Doing a Doctorate in Germany
An Interview with Amylia Ghani
Explore why Amylia Ghani says ―Have faith and do it!
Why did you decide to do a Doctorate in Germany?
I’ve always had a fascination with Germany, its culture and history. Being a chemist, it provided me with even more incentive as many of the great chemists were German and much of the technology we have today stemmed from Germany. I thought it would be a good idea to experience the education there to see how it differed from the education in Singapore. I was actually offered a PhD position after my masters at the TU-Munich. Having already spent eight months there and loving the lifestyle and the style of education, I decided to stay.
How would you describe the quality of doctoral studies in Germany?
I would say it is very research focused and very “hands on”. You’re not just reading about the research in theory but you’re actually doing it with your own hands and observing first hand.
How did you like your Doctorate? Did it fulfill your expectations?
I enjoyed every bit of it, even the hard and difficult parts! I think it exceeded my expectations and gave me opportunities I could previously only dream about.
How will the Doctorate made in Germany help your career?
I think having any kind of international expo-sure would enrich anyone’s CV instantly. It shows that you’ve had the courage to take up something completely new and are able to work outside your comfort zone. Also it shows that you’re able to adapt to different working environments and different working culture.
What would your advise be to anyone thinking of applying for a scholarship?
Have faith and do it.
How were you coping with the German language?
I had previously done 2 years of German while I was in NUS for my undergraduate studies. That did help a little when I was out and had to buy bread from the bakery. But the language of instruction in the university for research especially is English. The re-search groups in the university are so diverse and multi-national that everyone speaks English. So there’s nothing much to worry about the language barrier.
Besides from the research knowledge and personal enrichment, why would you encourage other students to go to Germany?
I think it is a good experience, fantastic life-style, excellent opportunities to travel and see Europe and work wise, it also opens the doors to other international opportunities since Germany has many international collaborators.
Which expectations did you have when you went to Germany and have they been met?
I expected an enriching experience and the opportunity to see the world, and I think I got what I wanted.