Adnan Brđanin talks to us about the Technology Scholarships and explains why this scholarship offers much more than just financial support. He would encourage everyone to apply for this scholarship and can also totally recommend to start with the Master’s degree programme in Informatics at the University of Klagenfurt. He completed his internship at Alturos and was then offered a permanent job. Read more about his experiences in the following interview.
Tell us something about yourself, where do you come from, what are you studying at AAU? Write a short story.
My name is Adnan Brđanin and I come from Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina. In Sarajevo I finished my Bachelor studies at the Faculty of Electrical Engineering, University of Sarajevo. I am 22 years old and I arrived in Klagenfurt in October of 2019. At the University of Klagenfurt, I am studying the Master’s degree programme in Informatics, with a specialization in Data Science in Data Engineering.
Why did you decide on your chosen degree programme? Was it clear from the beginning what you wanted to study? Why did you choose the University of Klagenfurt for your Master’s degree programme?
I knew from the beginning of my Bachelor studies that I would like to pursue a Master’s degree in Computer Science/Informatics. The fields that have always attracted me were Data Science, Data Engineering, Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning as well as Computer Vision. What I realized is that I would like to do my Master’s studies in one of these fields and the University of Klagenfurt offers exactly that. It seemed like a perfect solution for me as the University had most of these specialization fields in the new curriculum. What I liked the most is that the studies are completely in English which helps us, international students, to integrate better, while we learn the German language. As a person who has published two scientific papers during my Bachelor studies, I also wanted my Master’s degree to be somewhat research oriented. The University of Klagenfurt offered a perfect blend of research and practice work which I liked and this helped to make my decision in June of 2019 of choosing the University of Klagenfurt as my future university easy and logical. After one year, I can say that I have not been disappointed by a single thing here in Klagenfurt during my studies.
Has your view of the world changed through your studies? If yes, how?
What has changed most is the fact that I do everything on my own now, in new surroundings, culture and with new people. It was difficult at first, since I did not know anybody here in Klagenfurt, but that changed soon as the people were very helpful and friendly. I have found it easy to get around here, even with my low level of German in the beginning. I can say that my view of the world has remained mostly the same. I still have the same, if not even bigger goals to pursue, just with some new people around me.
You are a Technology Scholarships holder. How is that for you? In what ways did you benefit from the scholarship?
The Technology Scholarship at first glance offers exactly what a student needs from a financial point of view. However, that is just the tip of the iceberg – the Technology Scholarship offered me way more than that. I have had the opportunity to have a study supervisor, to have career guidance, to meet company representatives and talk to them in person, assistance in applying for a residence permit, booking a dormitory and more than everything, the Technology Scholarship has helped me https://www.alturos.com/become a better individual in most aspects of my professional life and career.
Tell us a little bit more about your internship experience (Where did you complete your internship? How long did you work there? Which task did you have to do?, etc.).
I did my internship with a company named Alturos Destinations GmbH in Klagenfurt. I met the company’s CTO at one of the meetings organized by the International Office of the University of Klagenfurt here in Klagenfurt. My internship lasted from May until the end of the September, and I can proudly say that even though my internship has officially ended, I have received an offer to stay with the company as a Software Engineer, which I gladly accepted. The focus of my internship was on developing a software solution (a Data Warehouse). I am very grateful for the opportunity to work on such a project. Firstly, not just because it is related to my specialization field at the University, but also because I find this project very interesting and I have learned a lot from the experience in these 5 months. Also, this project was not a mock project for an internship, but an actual live product, which is still in an early phase of development. I look forward to working on this project for months and years to come, but also on some other similar projects in my company.
Would you also encourage other prospective students to apply for the Technology Scholarships? Can you tell us why?
I would encourage (and I already did in a couple of cases) everyone to try and apply for the scholarship because it is truly a life-changing experience. The Informatics curriculum is great, there are so many interesting specializations to choose from, people from OeAD and International Office are amazing, and the scholarship is sufficient to cover all your monthly costs for a year of studies. There is not really a single down-side which I could point out. It is a „no-brainer“ – apply to become a Technology Scholarship holder.
What are your future plans and goals?
My plans for the near future would be first to finish my Master studies. I am writing a Master’s thesis with professor Julius Köpke, who was also my study supervisor during the scholarship. My Master’s thesis is related to inter-organizational business processes, precisely the execution of business processes on Hyperledger Fabric. As Professor Köpke and myself have lots of ideas for this topic, we plan to publish a couple of research papers on this topic too. Other future plans include staying in this lovely city – Klagenfurt, continuing to work as a Software Engineer while pursuing research as a hobby, as well as enrolling on a PhD programme one day. Who knows, maybe AAU will be the university for it 🙂