Graduate in the Hydro Power unit – mechanical engineering
Location: Essen, Germany
What did I do before joining RWE?
Before joining RWE Power AG, I took a Master's degree in industrial engineering at Leibniz University of Hanover, where I specialized in power and process engineering. Besides studying, I did several internships and completed a student research project at a major German manufacturer of turbomachinery. In addition, I worked as a student assistant at Leibniz University's Institute of Turbomachinery and Fluid Dynamics for some time.
The highlight of my graduate programme so far
So far, the highlight of my graduate programme was visiting the Herdecke pumped-storage power plant. Apart from the power plant's marvellous location on the Hengsteysee lake and the historic Koepchenwerk station, I was particularly impressed by the shaft construction of the power plant. The power plant's generating set is positioned in a shaft with a depth of about 50 metres offering a sight that really blew my mind when I first entered the power plant.
My project stations
My 18-month graduate programme is mainly divided into four project stations. During the first station, I got an insight into the headquarters of RWE Power AG in Essen, Huyssenallee. Currently, I am deployed at the Herdecke pumped-storage power plant. What I find especially exciting here, in addition to becoming familiar with the processes in the power plant, is the fact that I have already been given responsibility for the management of several maintenance projects and that I have the opportunity to work on projects on my own responsibility. After completing my current project station, I will return to the Essen headquarters for three months and progress through several technical departments before concluding my training programme at the largest pump-storage power plant connected to the German grid: Vianden in Luxembourg. During that time, a major inspection of a generating set is scheduled to take place in Vianden that I will be involved in.
The graduate programme is complemented with regular seminars designed to sharpen one's soft skills, and graduate events are organized to establish an RWE-wide graduate network.
I received a warm welcome from my colleagues, who immediately integrated me into the team. However, it was not only thanks to my colleagues' friendliness that I had an easy start but also thanks to their expertise. I can always count on them for professional advice and know-how. Through working with them I was able to extend my knowledge both about hydropower and about technical and energy topics not related to hydropower, which is very helpful in my daily work.
My recommendation to applicants
To applicants I can only give the recommendation that they be authentic and approach the application process without reservations. During the job interviews as well as the assessment centre, the atmosphere was always friendly and free of pressure and I always felt at ease.
Generally, I would recommend every graduate who is motivated and interested in energy topics to submit their application to RWE as the company offers a wide array of opportunities for personal and professional development in the form of exciting, constantly changing projects and cooperation with qualified and open-minded colleagues.