Eva Roddeck is the current IT intern at the DAAD New York office. She is responsible for system and network administration and supports the staff in all technology matters. She studied and received her bachelor degree in Applied Computer Science at the Ruhr University Bochum in Germany. After she completes her internship in New York, she will return to Germany to pursue a career in software development.
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We asked Eva a few questions about her work and experience in Germany:
- Why did you decide to pursue an internship at DAAD New York?
This internship in network administration is a perfect addition to my education in computer science. Through my former student job, I also have a background in international higher education and this internship seemed like a perfect opportunity to gain hands-on experience in an international setting.
- What are you currently working on?
My internship is coming to a close, so right now I am preparing my work space for my successor who will work at DAAD for the next 6 months. I am also finishing a project on integrating additional workstations into our domain, as well as a feasibility assessment on data migration.
- What was the most ‘German’ experience you have had?
I was invited to a bar here in New York to celebrate a friend’s birthday. I arrived at 8pm sharp, as stated in the invitation, an hour before everyone else. My punctuality made me feel very German at that time.
- What advice would you give to students who are thinking of working in your field?
Even though computer science is offered at most universities nowadays, it’s a field that demands practical experience. Next to learning the theory, it is important to work on real projects as soon as possible. That’s the case for network administrators as well as software developers. An internship is the perfect opportunity to apply the things you learned at a university and I would advise any student to do so at least once during their studies.
- What advice would you give to North American students who are thinking of studying abroad in Germany?
I may be biased, but you should consider choosing one of the universities of the Ruhr Area, where I obtained my bachelor degree. I grew up there and in addition to some great universities we have friendly people and the right mix of urban areas and nature.
- Which pictures, plants or unusual objects are there in your office?
The most unusual thing about my office surely is the view onto the East River and Roosevelt Island. It’s fascinating to be able to watch Manhattan from above during a normal office day. There is also a pin board on which past and present IT interns share advice and computer science humor with the next intern. One such item is a fortune cookie paper stating: “if your work is not finished, blame it on the computer.”
- Can you cook a German meal without a recipe? If so, which one?
I can cook some mean Bratkartoffeln, which are simply fried potatoes. It’s an easy and common dish in Germany that is often prepared to make use of leftover boiled potatoes. The potatoes are cut into pieces and fried with onions, ham and fresh chives.
- Is there someone who has significantly inspired you in your studies or career? If so, who and why?
As a female computer scientist, I admire the mathematician, Ada Lovelace, who is considered to be the first “computer programmer” as she wrote the first algorithm for a computer in 1842, more than a hundred years before the first computer was even built. She based her work on a concept of an “analytical engine,” devised by Charles Babbage. It is impressive how early the concept for the modern computer was developed and I’m happy a woman helped conduct this process, as females are still underrepresented in computer science.
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