Study exchange Austria - Martin Lochman

3/28/2014
​During my stay, I realised we are still similar to Austrians in many aspects in terms of mentality and views.
​With a wide range of foreign exchange visits offered by the university, it was not easy for me to choose a single destination for my study visit in the winter semester 2013/2014. Finally, I decided to choose FH Oberösterreich Steyr in Austria, with which ŠKODA AUTO University has a Double Degree contract for the follow-on Master’s degree programmes. Since this programme is relatively new, my choice was a bit of a leap into the unknown. Having completed the programme, I have to say I made the right choice. During the five months that I spent in a foreign country, I gained not only new interesting friends, but also much knew knowledge and contacts of foreign companies. Thanks to higher demands of the programme, I did not have to deal with the usual Erasmus students problems, of how to deal with my free time. I can therefore definitely recommend this type of exchange study to all those interested. You will find more information about my stay abroad in three sections that describe various aspects of studying and living in a foreign country.

Studying at a foreign university
I want the first paragraph to be dedicated to all the matters associated with studying at a foreign university. Before leaving, I had to register in the Double Degree programme using forms supplied by the foreign university, confirm accommodation and adequate financial security with the foreign institution. After receiving confirmation of preliminary admission, other administrative tasks were completed in my destination during the first week with the help of the local International Office. What was great was the involvement of local students who helped with arranging registrations with local authorities. In case of any problems, students are not at the mercy of local bureaucracy, or left only with their knowledge of German language, which was necessary for dealing with the authorities. At the same time, this helped to establish contacts with local students.
 
After the necessary administrative tasks were completed, I could begin to focus on the third semester of the Global Sales and Marketing (GSM) programme I completed under the Double Degree programme. All courses were taught in English, but some supporting presentations were in German and I could therefore practice both the languages. Assimilation with local students of Global Sales and Marketing was quite quick, but differences in the level of English were noticeable, with local students having a really high level of English language. Classes took place also on Saturday most weeks, which was something you have to get used to. On the other hand, Monday and Tuesday was more relaxed since it was dedicated to projects with local companies. The habits and the way classes were organised reminded me of Czech high schools in a way. Particularly, because of a very low level of cooperation with other students. In addition, it was not possible to select optional courses for the third semester of the follow-on study. All courses were given by the curriculum. Local students formed a compact unit and were used to working together in their groups. Every year of each field of study had its “class teacher” students could talk to when addressing any issues with the study.

I would like to point out that local teachers mostly had many years of practical experience, which I consider very important. Lectures connected theoretical concepts with practical examples. It is not only because of this that I find the local teaching style attractive and effective. Compared to the Czech system, Austrians put more emphasis on analysis and synthesis of a given issue. The courses I took were focused on current issues and new approaches, something which is often expected and valued by employers. For example, the course Global Account Management lectured by Mag. Christian Stadlmann was very interesting and beneficial. Austrians also put great emphasis on presenting your own opinions. Learning by heart is only secondary in the Master’s degree programme.

Difficulty of studies is hard to estimate since the teaching style is really quite different. An interesting evaluation method were the Take Home Exams, where students receive the assignment via email and have to come up with a solution by the end of the day. The evaluation criterion was originality and applicability of the solution, again putting emphasis on practical use. The last point I would like to mention is a comparison of Double Degree with classic Erasmus programme. During my stay, I also attended two compulsory courses for Erasmus students, which were less demanding compared to the GSM courses. Language level of other international students was more or less comparable. 
 
Local customs and differences
During my stay, I realised we are still similar to Austrians in many aspects in terms of mentality and views. For example, cuisine and eating habits are very similar. Beer is a very popular drink, of course. It is therefore no surprise that there is a large number of regional brands in Austria and the choice is comparable to the Czech Republic. Since student events usually take place on Wednesday in Steyr, it was necessary to count with leaving for home early.

I would also like to mention a couple of differences. Austrians devote a relatively large portion of their time to recycling waste. Sorting into these five groups is very common: waste paper, plastic, glass, metal, biological waste. Public holidays are often accompanied with social events for the public and it is therefore common to see entire families participating in various parades. Our southern neighbours are also fond of their folklore clothing, which includes a checked shirt and leather pants. Typical clothing can be purchased at almost every corner. Many models are designed for daily use. It is very inspiring in what way they try to preserve their unique clothing style. What is also very noticeable is the effort to support and buy local products. The price is not the most important factor. Similarly as in Germany, stores and supermarkets are closed on Sundays and it is therefore necessary to buy more food on Saturdays. 

Furnishing of houses and apartments is on a high level. Most people have a job in a field in which they studied. Wouldn’t it be appropriate to introduce this system in our country as well? Companies are used to supporting schools and talented students (not only financially). Living in Austria is generally associated with less stress. At the same time, I believe that work efficiency would be higher there. Work is just rewarded more fairly based on length of study, abilities and the position. Thanks to sufficient income, Austrians are used to save up already from starting their first job. Loans are approached only very carefully and many students rather look for paid internships to help cover the study costs.

The last habit I would like to mention is knocking on the table at the end of every teacher presentation. This replaces our clapping. I got used to this difference very quickly and I have to say that after returning home, I quite miss this group thanks to presenters.
 
Places of interest nearby
Besides sightseeing in Steyr itself, which is a city rich in history (in the past, the city was an important trade town, ore mining, Protestant population in the 14th century, available energy of water streams has attracted industry), the exchange stay also gave me the chance to visit several interesting places around Steyr. I would like to highlight two places that are good to visit during the stay.

I would definitely recommend visiting the Kalkalpen National Park, which is less than an hour away by car or bus. Nature of our neighbours is really beautiful and very well kept clean. The downside is that certain parts have to be paid for and are only limited for the summer season.

I also visited local Bad Hall spa with typical outdoor heated swimming pool, which is open during the winter as well. Services were top notch and the price was almost comparable with Czech water parks. The town of Bad Hall also has a very interesting place of pilgrimage – the Adlwang Church. Locals believe that together with prayers, the church can protect against disease. You can also visit a nearby abbey in Kremsmünsterm, which is surrounded by legends from the 8th century.
 
The conclusion of my report will be brief and I would like to thank ŠKODA AUTO University for the opportunity to participate in the Double Degree programme, the European Union and the Olomouc Region for financial support that helped to cover increased costs. I firmly believe that the knowledge gained from studying abroad will help me to succeed in the current labour market and also better understand the mentality of neighbouring nations.
 

​On 26 – 29 March 2018 the JEUL project partners gathered together at Nanjing University of Aeronautics and Astronautics (NUAA) participating in the project practical workshop.
​20th September 2017. ŠKODA AUTO University is now admitting students for its new MBA programme Global Management in the Automotive Industry. The programme has been prepared in cooperation not only with foreign universities, but also with multinational companies, the Automotive Industry Association and the German-Czech Chamber of Industry and Commerce.  It is a prestigious programme grounded in the context of the automotive industry. Courses will start in December 2017 in the office of the German-Czech Chamber of Industry and Commerce on Wenceslas Square.
Our student Václav Volf travelled to Ingolstadt in Germany to do his compulsory internship in Audi AG. He worked in the Department for Coordination of Fair and Exhibition Vehicles, where he supported the permanent staff in the process of planning vehicles for fairs. He was responsible for this year’s exhibitions in Detroit, New York, Shanghai and partly also for the Frankfurt fair in autumn. You can read the whole report from his stay in Ingolstadt below. 
​Martina comes from Jičín but currently lives in Prague. She completed her follow-on Master’s degree programme at ŠKODA AUTO University in 2014. Right after graduation, Martina started working for Estée Lauder, first in the HR department. She worked her way through marketing to a PR position and currently takes care of promotion of seven world-renowned brands.
She likes to spend her free time doing sports – mostly running, badminton, volleyball and mountain hiking. Also, because of her profession, she likes fashion and design.
​Viktor Myslil, a graduate of our Bachelor’s degree programme Business Administration and Operations, comes from Prague. His passion for ŠKODA AUTO cars made him decide to study in Mladá Boleslav. He also wanted to try something different than all his other classmates.
​I have been dreaming about living in a foreign country since I was small child. This wish made ŠAVS more appealing during my “university selection period” because I learned, thanks to their Open Day and a visit from the ŠAVŠ PR Department to my high school, that this school offers a lot of possibilities to study and complete internships abroad, the latter which is important in one’s future career. When I got the opportunity to spend my mandatory internship abroad, I did not hesitate a single moment. After my Study Erasmus in Slovenia, I left to spend another semester in Dublin, Ireland to work with Škoda’s Irish importer.
Mladá Boleslav is the hometown of our graduate Ing. Ivan Vaněk, who currently works for the British luxury car manufacturer, Bentley Motors Ltd., where he undertook his six-month internship as a student of ŠKODA AUTO University.
​Our graduate Michal Maruška works as a coordinator in the Connected Car and Infotainment Department. His internship involved many technical responsibilities. However, in order to further grow professionally, he needed a study programme that focused more on management. For this reason, he chose the Bachelor’s and follow-on Master’s degree programme Business Administration and Operations, both which combine the two fields in an ideal manner.
​The new Intercultural Competence course, which was first taught in the winter semester 2015/2016, has brought new knowledge of the cultural milieu of foreign countries as well as improved German language skills. The new course helps students understand the cultural differences between various nationalities and understand situations that may occur during long-term stays abroad. The students could also test their language skills. The course was introduced as the first specialised course taught in German. The guarantor of the new course is PhDr. Martina Žáčková, who is also the lecturer.
​Bc. Michala Fořtová studied the part-time form of the Bachelor’s degree programme Business Administration and Sales. As she says, she chose ŠKODA AUTO University because of her interest in cars. However, the deciding factor was the option of studying part-time as well as the great facilities of a modern university comparable to schools abroad. What she appreciated the most at ŠKODA AUTO University was the personal approach, something unthinkable in large institutions with large numbers of students, the excellent facilities, access to modern technology and the high level of the university in general.
​Ondřej is a graduate of the Bachelor field of study Business Administration and Financial Management and the follow-on Master field of study Corporate Finance Management in the Global Environment.
​Our student Andrea listened to the advice of her classmates when choosing her internship. She also visited the Magna company booth at the ŠKODA AUTO University Career Day and she– this was the partner for her six-month internship.
We are pleased to invite you to the Summer School of ŠKODA AUTO University.
I would recommend an internship to everyone. It is a great way to discover yourself, plus you get to learn the language and customs and most of all, it is an unforgettable experience.
Martin Dolejší, student of our Master Programme Global marketing and Sales, spend quite a lot of time abroad whilst studying at our university. Now he has three different experiences abroad: studies in Finland, internship at ŠKODA AUTO UK and also the prestigous programme, Global Village, in the USA. You can read the interview we did with Martin to see what he learnt and how he assesses his stays abroad.

 

I worked in the Purchase Department in the Projects team which consisted of 16 nice colleagues who were always prepared to help me kindly if I needed it. The beginning was quite exacting as we had to manage our bank account and request all Bentley systems such as SAP, TEVON, AVON, B-release database, but everything was arranged sooner than we expected.

I can confirm that trips abroad are a great opportunity to become more independent, gain new experience and make new friends. All young people should definitely use this opportunity.
The five-week event brings together students, young professionals and businessmen from different industries from around the world. During courses, panel discussions, tours in businesses and organisations, debates, consultation projects, national presentations, trips to New York City and Washington D.C. and cultural events, the participants learn skills and insights necessary to become a successful leader.
Anna is a graduate of the Bachelor field of study, Business Administration and Sales, and the follow-on Master field of study, Marketing Management in the Global Environment.
I decided to study abroad at the last minute – in the last semester of my studies. But I can say that it was the right decision and I would not change it. Our university offers several options to study abroad. I chose to study in Italy as I was mostly attracted to this country.
At the annual ACBSP conference in Philadelphia held on 14 June 2015, docent Pavel Mertlík, Rector of ŠKODA AUTO University, accepted the accreditation certificate of the American association Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs (ACBSP), awarded to ŠKODA AUTO University in November last year.
When I found out that I was chosen for an internship abroad in Bentley Motors I was thrilled but at the same time very afraid of how to manage everything and especially how to cope with being alone for five months in a different country. Fortunately, I was teamed up with other interns who were starting at the same time. After that everything was much easier.
How did I arrive in this country and job? During the semester offers with foreign interships appeared on a bulletin board on the Information Document Server. Since I had always been interested in going somewhere far away, to improve my language skills and to learn about a new culture, I did not hesitate to send my CV and cover letter.
I got my first professional experience at Bentley Motors Limited. Bentley Motors Limited is a British luxury automaker, and a wholly owned subsidiary of the German company Volkswagen AG.
Europa im Wandel: The second stage of the 11th year of the joint project of ŠKODA AUTO University and Fachhochschule Münster took place.
Are you still looking for an internship for your next semester? Get some inspiration from the story of our student David Brancuzský, who did his half-year internship at the QA Department in the Libáň plant of our partner company Magna Exteriors & Interiors.
Evgenii did his internship in a Slovak company, Treves – Slovakia s.r.o. However, he did not stay only in Slovakia– thanks to business trips, he also got to visit Barcelona in Spain or St. Petersburg in Russia. The work he did during his internship was undoubtedly quite diverse...
Each year a bunch of students from our university is chosen and sent to Bentley Motors in order to do our internship abroad and gain some valuable experience.
Wednesday March 11 was dedicated to careers! ŠKODA AUTO University was visited by the representatives of its thirteen partner companies who gave presentations on the possibilities of internships and employment during studies and after graduation.
ŠKODA AUTO University celebrated International Women’s day. The event included not only interesting lectures by Biljana Weber, the General Manager of Microsoft CZ, and Libuše Šmuclerová, the General Manager of Czech News Center, but also a fashion show and a concert by INFLAGRANTI.
We would like to invite you to our OPEN DAY which will be held on January 14th 2016.
ŠKODA AUTO University has successfully passed the accreditation process of the American Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs, obtaining a prestigious institutional ACBSP accreditation according to all its standards.
At the invitation of the head of the personnel department and students in 3rd year of the Bachelor’s degree programmes at ŠKODA AUTO University, who are taking their 5-month internships in Magna Bohemia in this semester, four of our students visited the plant in Libáň u Jičína on 24 November. This company became a partner of Škoda earlier this year as one of the main suppliers of interior parts for ŠKODA AUTO and other makes within the VW group.
Obligatory or continuous internship at EY? Why not! Adéla Burdová and Jan Breburda talk about their first impressions of the internship.

If I had to evaluate my stay in Athens, the words I could use would be amazing and unforgettable. Not only that, I met with great friendly people from many parts of the world, and I also learned about Greek culture.

My daily task was to negotiate discounts with suppliers and ensure a steady flow of orders in the internal system called Workflow.

One of the main reasons why I decided  on Škoda Auto University was the possibility for extensive internships, not only at Škoda Auto a.s. but also abroad with companies such as VW, Audi, Seat and Bentley.

ŠKODA AUTO University offers a lot of options for an exchange semester abroad. As a result, it was not easy to decide which university is the most interesting.  I decided to study at the University of Applied Sciences Upper Austria.

From 10th February till 25th July 2014 I had a great opportunity to be a part of the Purchasing department in Bentley motors Ltd. in a small town called Crewe. Crewe is situated in the north-west part of Great Britain.

May was an important month for ŠKODA AUTO University! We had the chance to welcome Eduard Hoeks, the Dutch ambassador, who discussed study possibilities at our University with the management, took a tour around our premises and talked to students. He described our study fields as unique and you can look forward to his lecture at our University!
Bohdan Wojnar, member of the Board of ŠKODA AUTO and Pavel Neuman, CEO of Magna Exteriors & Interiors (Bohemia) s.r.o., signed a cooperation agreement today between the two organisations. The cooperation will provide ŠKODA AUTO University students with many new possibilities, particularly in terms of work placements and graduate positions.
After last year’s successful acquisition of the European Commission certificate, the University is currently joining the elite club of institutions accredited by the Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs. From 8th to 11th May, the school hosted the first visit of the accreditation mentor prof. Kevin Cooney from Northwest University in Seattle, which will be followed by a visit of three accreditation commissioners in the autumn. The accreditation decision will be made by the end of 2014.
On Tuesday 6th May, ŠKODA AUTO University welcomed Dipl.-Kfm. Winfried Krause, member of the Board of ŠKODA AUTO for Economics, who delivered a lecture on “Managing Financial Results at ŠKODA AUTO”, in which he presented the development of ŠKODA AUTO since 1991, financial planning, management of financial goals as well as facts and figures of ŠKODA AUTO for 2013.
Miloš Zeman, president of the Czech Republic and Joachim Gauck, president of the Federal Republic of Germany, visited Mladá Boleslav on 7th May. As a part of their visit of the ŠKODA AUTO factory, they also met students of ŠKODA AUTO University.
I would highly recommend working in Bentley, because it is a unique opportunity to test school knowledge in practice and six months is long enough to get to know all the processes in procurement.
A great experience for me was the opportunity to become independent in a foreign country, use my foreign language skills in everyday communication and last but not least to make many new friends and contacts across Europe.
During my internship I was responsible for all documentation related to sales and car orders from the German production plant based on orders from dealers, so called Porsche Centers.
On April 15th 2014, Pavel Pěnička, Director of Siemens Elektromotory Mohelnice and Jan Dušek, Director of ŠKODA AUTO University signed a cooperation agreement on the premises of  Na Karmeli Educational Centre.
Jaroslav Follprecht, Vice Chairman of the Board of AIMTEC a. s. and Rostislav Schwob, member of the Board of AIMTEC a. s., Jan Dušek, Director of ŠKODA AUTO University and Petr Šulc, Rector of ŠKODA AUTO University signed an agreement on the cooperation between ŠKODA AUTO VYSOKÁ ŠKOLA, o.p.s and Aimtec a.s. on March 27th 2014 on the premises of ŠKODA AUTO University.
At the end of 2013, ŠKODA AUTO University received the Diploma Supplement Label, which is an international certificate awarded by the European Commission confirming quality and international standardisation when issuing qualification documents acquired by graduation.
The opportunity to spend several months in SVW as an intern was and will be a wonderful experience, life event and invaluable opportunity to gain world-class views while working in an international team.
​When I was deciding where I wanted to do my compulsory internship in the fifth semester, it became clear to me that I did not want to stay in the Czech Republic.
One of the many benefits from the Erasmus programme is the internationalisation of the study environment. As there is the possibility to encounter a wide range of cultures, and this allows students to learn and discover from each other. Felix Böttner, who spent winter semester 2013/2014 at our university, has shared his experience with us.
​I made use of my previous knowledge, gained a richer overview of business in the IT field, managed to combine theory from the basics of management and project management with practical use and thus gain valuable new skills.
​Vít Pečínka, a student of master´s degree, spent one semester in Finland. He would like to share his experience with us.
When I got the offer for a five-month internship at ŠKODA AUTO Deutschland GmbH, I did not hesitate and accepted the offer.
As with every new semester, we again welcome all the international students who decided to spend an exchange semester at ŠKODA AUTO University. In total, 12 international students arrived from Turkey, France, Slovenia, Germany, Ukraine, Austria and China.
Representatives of the International Office at ŠKODA AUTO University attended the 20th anniversary year of the largest education fair in Spain “AULA 2014”. The event which took place from 19 to 23 February 2014, was attended by more than 100,000 young people from Madrid and surrounding areas.
​7th year of The Central European Study Abroad Fairs Gaudeamus, 28th - 29th January 2014, Exhibition Centre Praha Holešovice, Halls E and D, 8:00 - 16:00.
​Getting an internship abroad had been a great motivation for me from the very beginning of my studies.
During the last week, a project seminar called “Europa im Wandel” was held, which was organised in cooperation with our partner school Fachhochschule Münster.
​Our student Denys Sliusarenko spent 6 months in Bentley. He will share his experience with you in this article.
On 14th November 2013, Seinajoki University of Applied Sciences hosted the signing of a double degree programme agreement by both Universities’ Rectors
​Between 4th and 6th November 2013, doc. Šaroch and Dr. Horská, from the Department of Economics, were invited to join the group of independent economic experts for the Czech Republic and participated in consultations of the European Commission in Brussels.
Between 18th and 19th November 2013, international team members of the project "Developing New Distribution Skills for SMES and HEI students” met to discuss matters regarding the project.​
​On 12th October 2013, the  fourteenth year of the Trends in Automotive Logistics Conference was held in Prague.
​The main reason why I chose to study at ŠKODA AUTO University was the prospect of obtaining professional experience in ŠKODA AUTO during my studies.
​I spent my Erasmus study placement in the Norwegian coastal town of Ålesund.
​The third annual Summer School “Global Management in the Automotive Industry” officially started on Monday 2nd September 2013 at ŠKODA AUTO University.
​The university arranges student internships and stays abroad not only in Europe but also in Russia, China, India and other countries. Our student Martina Bartošová spent winter semester in ŠKODA AUTO India Pvt. Ltd. She would like to share her story with us.
​ŠKODA AUTO University was the only Czech university which participated at the Annual Conference of the Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs held between 21st - 24th July 2013 in Salt Lake City.
​Our University participated in the 37th Education and Career Fair in Moscow during March 2013.
To study abroad is an interesting experience and a great change to everyday studies - Bc. Tereza Siebertová, Bc. Tomáš Holub and Bc. Petr Rolák. 
​David Řežábek studied at the FH Wien University of Applied Sciences in Austria.
​Lucie Dědečková studied at the University of Applied Sciences Upper Austria in Steyr.
​One of our students’ favourite places abroad for compulsory or optional internships is Bentley Motors Ltd. in the English town of Crewe.
​The students are slowly returning from their stays abroad, where they could not only study, but also work. They wrote interesting articles about their journeys, which we will gradually publish.
P​avel Srovnal undertook his mandatory internship at ŠKODA AUTO UK.  Below you will find his account of his time in the UK.
​The ŠKODA AUTO University opens annually the course Czech Language and Culture for Foreigners, where the students learn Czech, so that they can, once having finished the course, enrol to Czech universities (for Bachelor or Master programme).
​Jana Baková, a student, spent her internship in the ŠKODA Marketing department of Volkswagen-Audi, S.A. - ŠKODA AUTO’s Spanish importer. She will share her experience with you in this article.
​One of the other students, who studied abroad is Martin Dolejší, who studied in Finland and would like to share this experience with us.
​A group of advanced students of German, took part at a week long stay from 7th to 12th of November 2011 in the German city of Münster
​The Škoda Auto University is also attended by a few foreigners in the follow-on Master programme, which is taught entirely in English. Gaurav Mehra and Gopi Kasharla come from India.
​Lukáš Müller studied the Bachelor programme Business Administration and Sales at the ŠAU and then went on to study the Master programme Marketing Management in the Global Environment. 
​A Škoda Auto University graduate, Ing. Štěpán Lacina, who studied at the school from 2003-2009, responded to a few of Daniel Suchánek’s questions.
​Experience of the ŠKODA AUTO University’s student Anna Dolejší from studying at Fachhochschule Wien and from internship at Audi AG within the Erasmus programme.