STAY ABROAD

SST in MUSKEGON

Lukas Zeit­ner

, thanks to SCHERDEL, I was final­ly able to expe­ri­ence the “Amer­i­can Way of life”, a dream I had cher­ished so long. The “Best Trainee Pro­gram” gave me the chance to work as an intern at Scherdel Sales and Tech­nol­o­gy in Muskegon, Michi­gan. This enabled me to get a com­pre­hen­sive impres­sion of liv­ing and work­ing in the USA. My jour­ney began in Munich on Sat­ur­day, August 19, 2017. Just 20 hours lat­er, I found myself in the sec­ond biggest city of Michi­gan, Grand Rapids. From there I con­tin­ued to where I would be stay­ing, the lit­tle town of Spring Lake on the coast of Lake Michi­gan. My new home was a clas­si­cal, Vic­to­ri­an vil­la with a gen­er­ous veran­da. Before leav­ing for SST on Mon­day, I got to know Muskegon and its sur­round­ings. The town of Grand Haven, which is very close by and boasts a beach vot­ed one of the most beau­ti­ful in the USA. Some­thing uncom­mon by Ger­man stan­dards is not only the street scene there, but the strik­ing­ly large super­mar­kets that are open 24/7. I left for SST on MOn­day morn­ing, dri­ving along the high­way towards Muskegon. Hav­ing arrived at SST, I was warm­ly wel­comed by Sander Schoof at the recep­tion, who gave me an inter­est­ing tour of the plant.

As I am cur­rent­ly in my 5th semes­ter study­ing engi­neer­ing, the first depart­ment I worked in was in fact engi­neer­ing. It was a bril­liant oppor­tu­ni­ty to use and improve my Eng­lish while work­ing with col­leagues. On Fri­day after work, I took up the chance to go on a boat­ing trip on Lake Michi­gan with one of my col­leagues. This lake is the only one of the Great Lakes that is found in its entire­ty in the USA, and is the size of a sea. Over­all, there is a real lot you can do in this area. On this week­end, I also took the jeep along an almost end­less dune land­scape around the neigh­bor­ing Sil­ver Lake. I worked in main­te­nance in the fol­low­ing week, help­ing the elec­tri­cian with his job. Thanks to my train­ing as a mecha­tron­ics tech­ni­cian, I was able to be of some help. I met with some Amer­i­can col­leagues after work for a total­ly Amer­i­can expe­ri­ence. Accom­pa­nied by coun­try and west­ern music blar­ing from a pick­up, we did some shoot­ing using firearms at a fir­ing range. Add a cold Bud Light beer to this scene and you have the per­fect evening. All in all, this was a unique stay for me being a big fan of USA any­way, and one I would love to do again. After my intern­ship with SST, I vis­it­ed a few oth­er cities, such as New York, Wash­ing­ton D.C., Las Vegas, Los Ange­les, San Fran­cis­co and Mia­mi. But I felt most com­fort­able in the mid-west on Lake Michi­gan! I would like to give a word of advice to all present trainees: It is real­ly worth­while giv­ing your appren­tice­ship all you have got!