NE: Aaron Didam, age: 20, country: Germany, business sector: Joiner, website: www.schreinerei-didam.de
HE: Jörg Strupat, age: 52, country: Sweden, business sector: Joiner, website: sites.google.com/site/brovillansnickeri
Last year after I had concluded my education as a joiner and could collect a little experience in the occupation by this work in my teaching company and later by the work in the parental company, I made the decision to come out from Home to see something else and to be able to collect new experiences. Thus I came in contact with Jörg Strupat a German carpenter’s master who immigrated 15 years ago to Sweden. Thanks to the help of my instructor at school, I was able to make this contact with Mr Strupat.
With the help of Erasmus for young entrepreneurs, we put together my documents and I sent an application to Sweden. After a little while Mr. Strupat contacted me and we told about the works them are made, to the expiry of such a training period and from experiences with previous trainees. This sounded everything very well and I might be glad as myself the stay was promised. Then together with EYE we have provided an Activity plan and have cleared the remaining formalities, nothing more could be in way of the training period.
I received from the contact place in Sweden directly a nice welcome e-mail with all useful one what one as needs as example-white phone numbers addresses or holiday tips.
Already the trip to the training period place was unique, I might see directly the full beauty and nature of Scandinavia with the many wood and the lakes. After I had arrived in Österbymo Mr. Strupat showed me in the first days the Workshop and I was made close with the machines and working devices.
At the beginning we have built a camp cupboard for a stock space which surface works on and mounts the cupboards. Besides, we have furnished an office with shout tables and cupboards from massive maple. Later we have built an earthy culinary refreshment bar from Swiss pine which contains push boxes and frame doors with glass fillings.
For the farmer from the neighbourhood we had built and mounted new stable windows from Swedish oak (The oak was cut in the local sawmill. I was allowed to visit this on the occasion directly.)
In our model house, which shows the customer how they can design or implement their construction, we assembled window elements, insulated the roof, laid the floor and clad the ceiling.
Furthermore we have visited several Living and furniture measuring where we could issue our products. For this we have built before piece of furniture and have planned the exhibition stand in detail. This clarifies with the fairs one was with the customers in contact could step and could help them thus in her plans and images. On this occasion, I could learn a lot over the contact with customers, but also with the Swedish language.
Our main project during my stay was the construction of a sauna house with integrated rest space. With this project I could be present from beginning up to the end and learn, hence, a lot about the expiry and the organisation. We have planned the house, have put walls and roof, have put window elements, have laid floor, have dressed up walls and in the end have built the interior arrangement of the sauna.
After work or on the weekend I could experience a lot of the country and the culture. For example, we went fishing by boat, hunting or sightseeing in the big cities like Jonköping, Linköping or Kalmar.
I visited the thickest oak and the largest pine in the country. Likewise, I was in Vimmerby the birthplace of Astrid Lindgren, here you can visit the Nils Holgerson world or the Pippi Langstrumpf country. Also worth seeing is the farm Katthult where the series Michel (in Sweden he is called Emil) from Lönneberga was filmed.
Not to be missed is a visit to the moose park in Kosta Borda and Vimmerby. Because you were not in Sweden if you have not seen a moose.
During my internship, I gained a lot of new experiences and gained new skills, whether at work or at leisure. You learn to live and work independently and to take on more personal responsibility. Likewise, I was able to look at many career-related tips and tricks and think that I was able to expand my knowledge so extremely.
During the stay I met many people. Among them are other German emigrants or holiday home owners who have told me about their experiences. But of course I could also learn a lot about the Swedes, their culture and their way of life.
I also learned a lot about working with other apprentices or interns. During my stay I was allowed to work together with a German and a Swedish trainee. This also allowed me to learn a bit subject-specific Swedish, but also to improve my English skills.
What I can say at the end of the day is that I will still have contact with the HE after my stay, because we have really built up a great relationship and are a great team. I will motivate friends and acquaintances to dare something new and to take the step abroad. Maybe there is a carpenter I can only suggest the company Strupat.
Quotation regarding the experiences (NE)
In conclusion, I can say that the stay abroad was a really exciting and formative experience. I was able to get to know many new things, whether they were everyday items or work. I was allowed to learn a lot and above all work and think independently. We were a great team and the internship gave me a lot of fun.
I was able to gain a lot of new self-employment experiences and take a big step as a young entrepreneur.
I will remember this time for a long time with a grin on my lips.
I can only recommend to everyone to make such a stay and to know completely different sides of life.
All this was only possible thanks to the great support of the Strupat family and the TGZ Bautzen as well as the contact point in Sweden.
Thank you very much that I was allowed to participate in the internship.
Quotation regarding the experiences (HE)
Now, I have looked after Mr Aaron Didam for the duration of his stay abroad (6 months) under the Erasmus Program for Young Entrepreneurs as HE.
It was a very exciting and eventful exchange for both sides, and I was able to provide Mr Didam with help and advice in an intensive time, in which he showed himself to be a very receptive and interested young person. He has made a big step towards self-employment. He has learned that self-employment demands a great deal from many, but also means a great deal of freedom at work. Above all, it also means being able to realize your ideas and creativity, even if you are responsible for much more than a hired employee is.
I was very excited to see how Aaron implemented what he had learned and also developed a great ability to offer and implement solutions to problems.
We have presented our company at a few shows during this time and here he has learned a lot about ideas and experiences that will surely be of benefit to him.
I have learned a lot from him and gained a good insight into the world of a young motivated entrepreneur, which is always a great experience.
We will certainly stay in contact and will always be available for an exchange of experience and good advice in the future.
This article was funded by the European Union’s COSME Programme (2014-2020).
The content of this article represents the views of the author only and it is her sole responsibility; it cannot be considered to reflect the views of the European Commission and/or the Executive Agency of Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (EASME) or any other body of the European Union. The European Commission and the Agency do not accept any responsibility for use that may be made of the information it contains.