Nieuws - 20 september 2017

Blog: A white-collar job

Leonardo Medina Santa Cruz

Whenever I thought about my internship in the environmental sciences, I certainly didn’t see myself wearing a tie. But hey, life’s a funny thing.

Most of my friends from Wageningen would laugh in my face if they ever saw me in a suit. A year ago, I’m pretty sure I would have laughed at myself. And even worse, I think I kind of like it: the formal, grownup feeling. Everything’s suddenly very real and serious. As if my work had real-world consequences now. I think it actually does.

The funny thing is, when I applied to a business consultancy firm, I never thought I would get the job. I certainly don’t seem to fit in. After all, I’m the only one of my kind here. Our kind, us Wageningians.

You never know what kind of doors our university will open.

I work alongside business majors and economists with MBAs. All very serious capitalists, and all of them great people. In a mere two weeks, they have taught me so much. And I’m doing something good to boot: developing sustainability services for businesses.

You never know what kind of doors our university will open.

Getting used to the fast-paced culture has been the hardest thing by far. Everything moves slower in science. It needs to, otherwise mistakes would be made. But the business world likes it a little bit riskier. One needs to follow their gut, sometimes while ignoring the brain.

I’m not sure I actually like that. But it is what it is.

Other than that, there is not much difference. Lots of reading and learning and basically living in the abstract until suddenly there’s a click; things start to make sense.  You know that whatever it is you just grasped is valuable, and that you can use it for something worthwhile.

Never would have guessed it: having a white-collar job is not that bad after all.