An Indian young man who lived in Dubai for the longest time of his life - sounds interesting, doesn´t it? And I had the pleasure of talking to him and asking questions about his exciting life so far. While talking to Arun, my second international interview candidate, I was not as nervous as before the first interview. I was very relaxed and looking forward to all the stories behind this master student at accadis. We met pretty spontaneously and from the very beginning it was nice and easy to talk to Arun, a very pleasant and communicative person. From my point of view, he always seems to be open-minded and looking for the best present opportunities on the sunny side of life.
Arun about himself
It is a bit of a complicated name...Arun jokes...so I usually say Arun Bala. I am 27 years old and from India, but I grew up in Dubai. I stayed there for around 14 years. I basically lived outside of India longer than I actually lived in India. After my schooling I went back to my homeland to get my bachelor’s in electronics and instrumentation engineering. After I worked in Dubai, I worked in India and then in Germany. So, I lived in a few places and therefore, I got great impressions from a few different industries. I worked in Lighting, IT Software and I also worked in motorhomes.
How was your life before accadis?
Before accadis, I moved to Germany in 2016. I was here for 15 months in a trainee program at a company called Erwin Hymer Group, which is the largest motorhome manufacturer in Europe. I lived in Bad Waldsee for this time and as a foreigner, I needed to learn German over there because it is a small town with little Internationals. It was a very good experience since I got to see rural Germany, the small villages, the alps and I experienced interesting parts of the German culture like “Fasching”, which I really enjoyed. It was the first time I lived outside of a city because I grew up in very big cities. When my trainee program ended, I wanted to proceed with a master’s, so I was applying everywhere. I actually wanted to go to Canada, because it is an English-speaking country. But I also got the opportunity to stay in Germany and I liked it here. I now know the language and I know the culture.
How did you come across accadis after applying at very different universities?
I was actually looking for a specific course. My aim was to do something that is related to digital business, because of today’s world. So I applied to a few universities. While I was just focusing on digital business, accadis caught my eye. They had the exact course I wanted, digital business strategy. I looked up where it is and saw that it is near Frankfurt, which is one of Germany´s most international cities. It sounded perfect to me and it seemed like a great idea and it still does. I am really happy.
If you could change anything around your master studies, what would that be?
The only thing I would say is, when we reached here for the “Fit for Studies” course. I think there should have been some sort of an overview session with some information on health insurance, bank accounts and train tickets. I think that was the only thing, otherwise, I am pretty happy with the way accadis handled everything else like accommodation for instance.
What makes studying in Germany at accadis different for you?
The biggest difference between the Indian and the Western education system is the way they want to impart knowledge. The Western education system is more application based, they ask you to think and figure out answers by yourself while the Indian method is more theoretical. They expect you to understand the theory and to make your own interpretation. But in the end, education is how it works for each person. If you are able to adapt to it, both systems work.
Do you already have a favourite spot in Frankfurt?
It is a tough question because it is very easy to find a favourite place in Germany. You have so much nature and so many other options. But I like hanging out at “Hauptwache”, go shopping and stuff like that. I would not say I have a favourite place as such yet because I am still discovering. I would pick Frankfurt over and over again. I somehow like the feeling of this city. I have been to Stuttgart, Munich and Dusseldorf, but Frankfurt is far more international and far friendlier.
Was there a special experience or acquaintance you have had so far here in Germany or at accadis?
I mean, I got to know all my colleagues and classmates and everyone has a different story, everyone has a different journey. I am a natural conversationalist: I sit down in front of people and I start talking. I always find everybody interesting, I find everything that somebody says fascinating because it is his or her life story, it is his or her perspective and if somebody is willing to tell his or her story, I am always willing to listen. In that way, I usually would not say that he or she is the most impressive person I have met, because I think everyone has his or her own special story. So far: Everyone I have met is interesting and everyone has got something interesting going.
Do you already know where you want to go after accadis? Is there anything you dream of in your future?
I am generally a very open-minded person because my life has taught me that every time you make plans, things change. Therefore, I make an idea for a plan and then I start adapting as things come through. But my passion, although I am doing digital business strategy, is motorcycling and I used to work in the motorhome industry. Maybe later, in the future, I might work in the motorcycle industry in some way, but ideally, I prefer to keep my plans open right now. At the end of my master’s, I will look at the job market, I will look at where the demand is for my skills and decide accordingly. I am not the kind of person who says that I am only going to live here or there. Actually, I am open to the whole world and you only have one life to travel, so I try to experience as much as possible. Graduation is two years away, which is too far for me to plan, but ideally, I have the dream of working in a relevant field to what I am studying. Life always throws up some new challenges and I am willing to accept them.
Especially Arun’s answer to my last question impressed me: He is extremely open-minded about all future options regarding his career. He does not limit himself to one special dream, which, I think, might be a typical German way of addressing the future. After the interview, I was thinking about all the opportunities we probably do not even realize since we just focus on one particular job or one particular country. Additionally, moving to different countries does not seem to be a problem for Arun at all. He moved to Dubai when the city just started to transform rapidly and he as a citizen had to be able to adapt. Later on, he told me, that he has always lived outside his comfort zone and therefore, adapting to different countries and cultures is absolutely no problem. I admire this way of living because I think that this makes everything a lot easier for you and thus, you are able to experience a lot more in life. Thanks heaps Arun, for this awesome interview and keep it real!