Student - November 30, 2011

A warming-up scouting

Last Saturday I went to Amsterdam RAI and attended De Nederlandse Carrièredagen 2011 (the Dutch Career Days 2011). Besides the bag of little gifts from the exhibitors, I brought a truckload of questions home.

Hoards of visitors, workshops in Dutch, CV checking were all-inclusive!
My first impression of the event was that it looked like the Food-4-You Fair held in Wageningen last month. Even compared to the recruitment fair in China, there was not much difference. It was estimated that around 140 companies participated the career day, most of which were Dutch companies. They were boasted as the top-employers, but I didn't see the stands of Uniliver, Philips or Shell; instead Politie (Police), Koninklijke Marine (Royal Marine) and Rijksoverheid (Central Government) appeared. Two questions jumped into my mind: how can they use taxpayers' money to join this commercial exhibition? Is it difficult for the Dutch governmental agencies to infuse new blood?

Foreign hunters
Under such gloomy economic climate, I was curious who would like to dip their toes in this career bazaar. No wonder quite a few foreign students showed up and talked to the exhibitors...in English. 'Can you speak Dutch?' I asked several Asians. All the answers were "No". Do I want to work in Holland? Can I speak Dutch well? These are the tough but realistic questions I also have to face two years later.

Future prediction
There was a stand that offered career advice: you could receive a list of five employers most suitable for your characteristics by answering fifty related questions. The questions were in Dutch. Thanks to the Van Dale in my rucksack I could scrape through the survey and got five strange names I had never heard of: Capgemini, TNO, TCPM, ORMIT, ABB Benelux. I've written them down on a post-it and put it in my wallet, in addition I created an event "Wallet checking" in my Gmail on November 26, 2013. I'm just curious if that company KIESJEWERKGEVER is a top fortune-teller.

This weekend trip was more like a warming-up scouting to remind myself: one day I will have to leave the Neverland and start my career. But now, carpe diem, right?


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