Meet Gesa...

Year of Birth: 1988
Degree Program: 9/2012 - 9/2014 Master in Management
University: ESCP Europe
Previous Internships: OTTO Group, Beiersdorf AG, Bertelsmann SE & Co. KGaA, Unilever NV, The Boston Consulting Group (BCG)
Interests: Strategic Management, Finance, Corporate Development, Marketing
Personal interests: Music (piano, singing), Travelling, Sports, Dancing

Student Challenger since Spring 2012 to November 2014.

Describe your educational background. Where did / do you study, what degrees did / will you receive?
During high school I had the opportunity to spend one year as an exchange student of Rotary International in Belo Horizonte, Brazil. After taking the ‘Abitur’ I decided to study Business Administration at the University of Mannheim, including one semester abroad at the Auckland University of Technology, New Zealand. In summer 2011 I received my Bachelor´s degree and I decided to take a year off to gain further work experience through different internships. I will continue with my Master studies in summer 2012, specializing in Finance and Strategic Management.

Describe your career history. What have been your professional experiences?
Smaller internships at a regional newspaper and the radio and television department of the NDR (Norddeutscher Rundfunk) enabled me to gain first insights into the media industry. During my studies in Mannheim I was a board member of the student organization MARKET TEAM e.V. and among other projects responsible for the organization of the ‘ZEIT Campus Forum’. Additionally I had the opportunity to gain work experience in marketing, strategic marketing and portfolio management during internships at CLAAS KGaA mbH and OTTO Group. After graduating I spend 5 months in the department of strategic controlling at Beiersdorf AG before starting my internship in the corporate development department of Bertelsmann.

What attracted you to Bertelsmann and your internships? What is / was your favorite aspect about your job?
I was attracted to Bertelsmann because of its diverse structure and international footprint within the dynamic media industry. As I was looking for a challenging internship within a strategic focus, gaining experiences within the corporate development department of Bertelsmann presented itself as an ideal opportunity for me. I especially liked the fact that I was treated like a real team member from the very beginning. My opinion and ideas were valued and I had the opportunity to take over responsibility in several projects.

What has been your most challenging / rewarding / exciting task or project thus far?
During my internship I was able to get insights into several very interesting investment opportunities for Bertelsmann. The discussion, analysis and strategic assessment of these opportunities within a close team structure helped me to get a better understanding of the market dynamics within the media industry and improved my analyzing skills. Especially within the Information Services project, I had the chance to take over responsibility by analyzing the strategic growth potential for Bertelsmann in different industry verticals.

What qualities do you feel are necessary to be a successful employee at Bertelsmann?
I believe that it is important to be out-going and to have a friendly and open-minded personality in order to fit into the Bertelsmann community. In addition I´m convinced that qualities such as the ability to work well in teams, to be passionate and creative but at the same time self-confident, goal-oriented and proactive are very helpful to be successful within the company.

What was / is a typical day during your internship like?
I don´t think that there was a typical day during my internship. Due to the fact that there was no daily business but very diverse project work, each day was different than the other.

What are your professional goals? Any others ;-) ? My next goal is to successfully finish my Master program and further develop my professional skills. I would also like to spend additional time abroad to study or to gain further work experience.

If you had one word to describe Bertelsmann – what would it be?