International Internship Royal Ahrend APAC
External Learning Activity - graded 8/10 - B3.1 - ID@TU/e, Royal Ahrend APAC
Taicang City, Jiangsu Province, China.
During this internship I focused on developing my self-directed and continuous learning competency in combination with the professional skills of teamwork and communication. This all from a different cultural perspective. Additionally, I wanted to be more competent with the Technology and Realization competency described in the ID competency framework. I learned how design decisions made when creating a concept influence production process aspects. For example, when connecting two or more metal parts, there are different weld methods that create different results. Also the effect of bending can have big influences on your final product. Every time I made a product drawing and sent it to the factory, a worker came back to me to ask what I meant. This made clear to me what I did wrong in my drawings and how to improve so I could easily communicate my designs to the workers in the factory. Furthermore, my planning around concept development started well. However, my company coach urged me to keep following my planning even though it is hard. Why I stepped of my path was because I felt like some parts of the planning were not relevant anymore. This shows me that when I think aspects are not relevant anymore, I take little to no time thinking about it anymore. In the future I need to keep this in mind and ad my coach advised me, keep the planning a living document. Additionally, He told me that I could be more visible with my results so to make clear to everyone what I was doing and what I had made.
Design Vision and Professional Identity
My internship experience did change my vision on design a lot, it augmented my view on opportunities. This international experience was very influential and affected me personally and professionally because it took place completely outside my comfort zone. The internship taught me a lot about international opportunities such as the difference between the Middle Eastern Market and the Chinese Market, but also differences in cultures and the effects on design. It focused my vision on design even more on working environments. Which is where I find most personal interest for designing at the moment.
When looking the design vision of Ahrend, no aspect of the design is unnecessary. This draws a parallel with my current vision on furniture design. Additionally, I tried to go for an as clean as possible aesthetic in my concepts, to avoid any distractions for the end user. When it comes to my professional identity, this whole process has made me more competent in communication, planning, reflecting, organizing and collaborating. Mainly because of the real life working experience that enabled me to develop myself in these certain professional competencies. Additionally, because it pulled me out of my comfort zone, which is the place I think I learn the most and the fastest.
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