As long as I can remember I loved technology

Spiros Skoumpakis, student

Spiros Skoumpakis MSc PDEng trainee C2014

'As long as I can remember I loved technology. Through a gradual (course – oriented) procedure this love for technology focused on Software.

After my Master’s degree, in Electrical & Computer Engineering at Aristotle University of Thessaloniki in Greece, I faced a dilemma: doing a PhD or working in Industry. In my home country Academia and Industry are not at all connected but they both have attributes that appeal to me.

Smooth transition
Since I wanted to get an international experience I started searching abroad. Luckily, I had some friends in the Netherlands that informed me about the Designer’s Programs and immediately Software Technology caught my attention.

As a person I always seek new challenges and opportunities to further develop my skills both soft and technical. I knew that I wanted something more practical than a PhD but at the same time have a smooth transition abroad in a safer environment than a high-tech company. I had a strong indication the Software program would be a very good combination of those things and I decided to apply.

Putting Knowledge into practice
The very structure of this program - being part of a team collaborating with high-tech companies in small and diverse projects - is what I like most. After almost two years, I am now doing my traineeship at Philips Lighting.

Putting my knowledge into practice, I realize more than ever that Software is ubiquitous and that working in a protected but challenging multi-cultural environment can be proved invaluable as a starting point in one’s career.

Importance of soft skills
Last but not least, contemplating on what I gained from this program so far I feel the need to mention not a technical attribute per se but “know thyself” or “γνώθι σαυτόν” as the ancient Greeks used to say.

Psychologists and trainers help us along the way to understand the importance of feedback and soft skills in a domain perceived as purely technical. I now feel much more ready and equipped to continue my career as a Software Designer in High-Tech industry with the ultimate goal of becoming a Project Manager.'