We welcomed eleven new faces to the German Research Centre for Geosciences on 1 September. Five of the young talents are trainees. They are striving for a wide variety of degrees. After three years of well supervised training, they will be able to call themselves "physics laboratory assistant", "IT specialist for system integration", "media and information services specialist" or "office management assistant". We also warmly welcome two dual students of computer science from TH Brandenburg. They will complete the practical part of their studies here on the Telegrafenberg. We are also particularly pleased about four young people who have decided to support the staff at the GFZ as FJNers during their voluntary year in science, technology and sustainability.
The first working day traditionally began for all of them with an introductory event as well as a science history tour on the Telegrafenberg. The size of the campus with the many institutions located here, as well as the historical significance as a whole, really excited many of the new trainees. All of them started highly motivated. They want to gain practical experience and, as one of them reported, explicitly support scientific work in a non-profit enterprise.
According to a representative of the youth and trainee representation (JAV), the first week is mainly for orientation and arrival but many of them reported things they were able to learn already in the first week. From the basics of programming languages to operating machines, the range of experiences was wide. At the beginning, many of them were surprised by the internationality of the colleagues and the fact how well they work together despite this and how much the differences seem to enrich each other.
Young people interested in science can also look into everyday life in science and then certainly get to know it well during the voluntary year in science, technology and sustainability. One FJNer told us that the focus is also on orientation for one's own career path.
A total of 21 trainees and dual students are currently working and learning at the GFZ. The GFZ needs highly qualified employees in science, in the scientific laboratories and workshops, as well as in administration and IT. It is therefore gratifying that the German Research Centre for Geosciences itself has been awarded the title of "Top Training Company" and can contribute to the professional qualification of young people. In addition to excellent trainers, we at the GFZ can stand out by a particularly international working environment, state-of-the-art equipment and excellent working conditions. In addition, the GFZ supports the trainees in doing an internship abroad in a country of their choice and thus not only gaining valuable insights into other companies, but also gaining impressions of the respective country and culture. The downer remains the fact that despite the advantages the GFZ can offer, only just under half of the training positions could be filled this year.
The JAV representative has one last tip for all "newcomers" when she says: "Always be open and communicative, but most importantly: have fun!" In this spirit, the GFZ wishes all new arrivals a joyful start to this new phase of their lives!