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Alumni stories: Izabela Wilkosz

Alumni stories: Izabela Wilkosz

“Learn different skills, don’t limit yourselves to one discipline. You never know what may come in handy in the future, because the job market requires you to be very flexible and adapt to changes. Be open to learning throughout your life. And have the courage to aim high.”

Name and surname: Izabela Wilkosz

Place of residence: Bamberg, Niemcy

Position: Chief Social Officer

Degree subject: latynoamerykanistyka

 

  • What is your best memory of studying at the Jagiellonian University?

Lectures by Marzena Chrobak on pre-Columbian cultures – it was thanks to them and her support that I discovered this passion in myself, which many years later produced my doctoral dissertation on the Aztecs and a series of seminars for students. The lectures were fascinating and extremely engaging, and it was then that I decided that I wanted to work as a scientist and make a career in Latin America.

 

  • How did your career start? What were the turning points?

After my doctoral studies (Pre-Columbian Studies and Cultural Anthropology) at Freie Universität in Berlin, I moved to Bavaria and spent a long time looking for a job there. My skills didn’t align with the local market. The situation changed when I joined an international network for the Polish diaspora, gathering experts in various fields – I had the opportunity to meet educated Poles living in Germany and thanks to these contacts I soon got a job as a Project Manager in the IT industry.

 

  • How has your education contributed to your career development?

Paradoxically, my studies had nothing to do with what I am now doing professionally. The time of my studies was for me a period when I pursued my passion, improved my mind, acquired knowledge, but my specialization is extremely narrow. I had to re-train quickly because in Germany I didn’t have a chance for a permanent job at the university or for financial stability.          

 

  • Tell us about your current job. What do you do now?

I am a communication and social media specialist in an IT company based in Munich. In a nutshell: my job is to talk about what we do, where you can meet us and how you can get in touch with potential clients. I also provide training in social media for small businesses and teachers. I also try as best I can to lecture on the history of pre-Columbian cultures at the University’s archaeology department in Bamberg - I love teaching and telling about my passion!

  • What are your biggest challenges right now?

Social media is characterized by fast-paced and dynamic change. You have to invest a lot of time and effort to stay up to date.         

 

  • What is life and work like in the city/country where you live?

Germany is a wealthy and politically stable country. I live in Bamberg, which is on the UNESCO World Heritage List. It is a beautiful and very green city. I work remotely for the company in Munich; I drop by the office in person from time to time to meet and hang out with my workmates. I really appreciate this freedom and work-life balance.

 

  • What is your definition of success?

Just this balance. A sense of job satisfaction as well as respect, trust and appreciation of colleagues. I really like the people I work with and I have full freedom to define the scope of my duties, I enjoy the full trust of my supervisors.

 

  • What tips do you have for students who are just entering the job market?

“Learn different skills, don’t limit yourselves to one discipline. You never know what may come in handy in the future, because the job market requires you to be very flexible and adapt to changes. Be open to learning throughout your life. And have the courage to aim high.”

 

  • How do you imagine the cooperation between the Jagiellonian University and its graduates?

As sharing contacts and skills of graduates with students who will soon be entering the job market.

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