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Working with corporate partners on practice projects – What’s it like? 5 Master’s students share their views

Students from 23 different nations have made their way to Hamburg, Germany and are currently studying at Brand Academy. We have asked a few of them…

…working with corporate partners on practice projects – What’s it like?

I had already worked with big companies before joining Brand Academy, but what’s different here is the clients’ attitudes. They know that we are students and that most of us are from foreign countries, hence they tend to be more open-minded and curious than in a regular client-agency relationship. At the same time, we are not under pressure to do just what the client wants. Instead, we can focus on what the brand needs. Not least, while in an agency you tend to specialize in doing the same thing over and over, our practice projects offer a lot of variety. However, it means that I can’t just focus on the creative part but must also deal with strategy. This more holistic approach helps generating better ideas and more profound arguments to defend those ideas.

Ana Maria Bernal, Colombia, 4th semester International Brand Communication M.A.

First of all, I think it’s very cool that we are able to work with companies on a regular basis. Some public universities may offer similar opportunities, but certainly not many and not to the same extent. In any event, there you learn more theory while here at BA you get more first-hand practical experience. The companies I’ve worked with so far have all been very friendly and receptive for our ideas. That’s good news because it tells me that we are learning a lot and are able to apply our knowledge effectively.

Josh Kongmany, USA, 4th semester International Brand Communication M.A.

It’s very cool that BA has partnerships with a lot of companies – not only with interesting local ones, but also with famous global players. I think the latter is important because not matter how long we stay in Germany, we will always keep some traits that are typical for our cultures. Therefore, we may be more suitable for working in multinational corporations. In turn, multinational companies may particularly benefit from our diverse experiences and backgrounds when it comes to generating and implementing fresh ideas.

Kattya Cruz Ruelas, Mexico, 4th semester International Brand Management M.A.

Gathering work experience in German companies is very important to me as an international student. However, getting in touch with potential employers is difficult if you have to do it on your own. The practice projects at BA facilitate this a lot and also, we are better prepared for applications because after each project we know a lot about the company, its processes and its marketing.

Mina Kardi, Iran, 4th semester International Brand Management M.A.

I think the many practice projects with company partners bring a lot of benefits for us Master’s students. Most of us are from foreign countries, many even from outside of Europe, and without the projects it may be very difficult for us to find opportunities for getting face time with potential employers and for presenting our ideas and skills to them directly. Everything you learn during the respective course goes into the  project, so you are learn everything you need and nothing unnecessary. That said, I think the level of commitment and skill required in BA’s practice projects is appropriate for Master’s students. Corporate partners join the practice projects because they want fresh ideas, and as students fresh ideas are our strength. We think outside the box, which makes us attractive candidates for jobs. Once you have spent 3 or 4 years in the same job you may start thinking in a certain way and can’t break the cycle.

Nikita Ashok, India, 2nd semester International Brand Management M.A.