My name is Elena and I study Biomedical Engineering at the University of Cagliari. I was a DAAD scholarship holder during summer 2013, and I had the opportunities to be on an internship of 10 weeks in the German city of Karlsruhe, and to attend a two weeks German course in Berlin.
During my internship I worked at IMT (Institut für Mikrostrukturtechnik); my PhD tutor was Nicole Steidle, and I could give contribute to her research studying the adsorptive properties of the protein Streptavidin on micro and nano-structured polymer foils. Streptavidin finds many applications in the biomedical field, so it was very interesting, fascinating and challenging for me to give my small contribute to this research field. Thanks to this internship I was able to realize even more how much I enjoy lab life and I understood which academic path I want to follow: keep working as a researcher.
Germany seems like a valid candidate where I could continue my studies; during my internship I was really impressed for the level of care that Germany gives to research and education in general. I felt welcome and appreciated both in my workplace and at home, where I shared the apartment with a German student, Dominik. My typical working day was usually very different from the weekends; at work I usually had lunch with my RISE Spanish friend, Josep, who worked in my campus. Usually my work was over around 3-4 pm, and I could go back home or meet friends and visit the city and their surroundings.
My time in Germany has been marvelous; what I brought home was apart from the enriching work experience surely the love for and from many people, starting from my flat mate in Berlin, Stephanie, who helped me through pretty tough times, to my colleagues at IMT and my RISE friends. I have amazing memories of all of them. Germany has given me much. I will continue this amazing German adventure and I can’t wait for more!