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First-hand experience: Three years of being a dual student with iic

Hi, my name is Robert, and my passions have always been cars, design and technology. icon incar has given me the opportunity to do all these things in one office. After almost three years of being a dual student with iic, I am currently writing my bachelor thesis in the major media design. Over this time I have learnt a great deal about UI & UX design, design processes, prototyping and lots more.

How it started

After deciding to do a Duales Studium (dual study program) at the DHBW Ravensburg, Germany, I needed to look for a company that would sponsor and support me throughout my three year bachelor program. After applying to several companies, icon incar was one of my favourites due to their specialisation in the automotive industry – perfect for a petrol head like me. When walking into the office to meet with the studio manager, I knew this was the place to be. People were working away on creating the latest and greatest in the automotive UI/UX world, laid-back, friendly and most importantly interested in cars.
icon incar decided to incorporate me into the family, being the first time the office was supporting a dual student. I had no idea how much I was going to learn and develop over the course of the next few years.

How does it work?

The program is split up in two phases (practical and theory), I would be rotating every three months between working at the company, and studying at the university. Over the course of the program, there are no holidays stretching across several months: it’s switching between practical and theory phase every three months. Even though it can be quite exhausting at times, I do not mind this as it always encourages me to learn new things, be on the go and not let myself slack.
Which phase do I prefer more? Definitely the practical phase. During these three months I am always in touch with real projects, real customers and because of this learn so much more in this time.

The office

One of my favourite things about the team is that it is not too large. The office is split up into several smaller teams, of which I would switch around each phase. This allowed me to dive into different steps and phases of the design process. Relatively quickly I got the feeling of holding responsibility, and not having to do typical “intern jobs” – which is fantastic. One is viewed as a equal member of the team, contributing to the projects and always being able to ask questions and learn new things. This is one of the main reasons why I learnt so much every time I was there.
Besides the office having a very strong and diverse team, the people are great too. Whether it be cooking lunch together or hosting an event followed by a party, it always ensures for a great time.

Looking back

Now it has almost been three years, and every time I look back it astonishes me how much I have learnt since starting at the company. It has been great fun being part of different projects with different teams, and now I am very excited to write my bachelor thesis with icon incar and receive a lot of support from my supervisor and the team.