Field Reports – Student Internships
FoamPartner Singapore Pte. Ltd.
Research & Development internship field report
Shortly after joining FoamPartner Singapore as the new Product Development Engineer, I embarked on a training stint. I uprooted from Singapore for a stretch of almost 4 months to work and live in Germany and Switzerland.
My training commenced at Reisgies in Leverkusen in Germany. I spent the first month picking up the basics of foaming in the laboratory. With the help from the R&D department I expanded my knowledge of the various polyester foam. In addition I had the possibility to assist to other departments within the company.
After spending two months in Germany, I began the second half of my training at Fritz Nauer AG in Wolfhausen in Switzerland. Similarly, I got to work mainly with the colleagues in the R&D department. This time, I have been exposed to the polyether and comfort foam business that FoamPartner is involved in.
Despite being in countries where I had no kin and where English is not spoken as the primary language, I did not feel lonely or helpless because my colleagues were very gracious and patient in helping me settle into the local working and living environment. Some of them even went out of their way and took time out to play host to me after working and over the weekends, enabling me to feel extremely welcome and very much a part of the FoamPartner family.
Living in a concrete jungle city of Singapore, the lush greenery and natural landscape in Europe felt as a fresh change for me. I thoroughly enjoyed the scenery that Germany and Switzerland offered throughout my stay there and on my trips to nearby cities and villages. I also savored the authentic cuisine of Germany and Switzerland, often enjoying the beer produced locally as well as the delicious Swiss chocolate.
The training program has enabled me to experience the the working methods and the daily life of my colleagues in Germany and Switzerland at close quarters. So I was able to get an impression of the dynamics in the polyurethane foam industry. The overall European experience has been amazing if not somewhat surreal because it seemed all new and different for me. I really had a good time and I have gained so much experience, independence and life-long knowledge from this training programme both on a personal and professional level.
February 2014, Paula Sng