Supporting both careers
FAU´s Dual Career Service supports life partners with their career plans
Anyone deciding on a scientific career nowadays needs to be flexible. Frequent changes of residence – within and across national borders, or from one continent to another – are part of everyday life for many researchers. Their life partners are also affected by this mobility. For this reason, the question of whether the new location offers career opportunities for both partners plays an important role when researchers consider an offer of a chair or professorship at a university. Therefore, FAU has a Dual Career Service which supports the partners of newly appointed professors and international postdocs.
Extensive network and expert advice
“The great advantage of FAU´s Dual Career Service is that we also serve the Dual Career Network in Northern Bavaria,” says Yvonne Eder, Head of FAU´s Dual Career Service and coordinator of the Dual Career Service Network Northern Bavaria. “In addition to FAU, other universities and research institutes from around northern Bavaria are part of the network, not to mention companies such as Areva or Audi.” Life partners profit from this network as the Dual Career Service offers superb opportunities to get in touch with potential employers in the region. In fact, the service offers even more. Yvonne Eder provides information on the particularities of the German job market, offers tips regarding the structuring of application documents, and – together with applicants – creates a so-called qualification profile: “We jointly access competences to search for suitable, specific job offers or employers.” Even when it comes to looking for further training, the approval of foreign qualifications, or the selection of a convenient language course, researchers´ partners can speak to FAU´s Dual Career Service. “Language proficiency is often underestimated. Although there are international companies such as Siemens or Adidas in the region, they usually expect good or excellent knowledge of the German language, “says Yvonne Eder. In addition to career-specific support, Yvonne Eder provides general advice regarding living and working in the Nuremberg Metropolitan Region.
The success of the FAU Dual Career Service can be seen from the feedback from numerous partners:
Swedish engineering physicist, who found a job at Siemens: „Particularly helpful to me was the support in finding a ‘point of entry’ for establishing a professional network in the area, as well as your information on general work-related questions. I perceived the collaboration with you as professional, accurate and responsive.”
Portuguese business analyst, who found a job at Adidas: „In my case the feedback and the corrections on my CV and covering letters was very important. The fact that I was speaking with someone that knows the local market, as well as the way the market works, was also very reassuring. The task of finding a job is energy-consuming and feeling that someone is with us giving an extra push is truly helpful.”
French-Chinese economist: “The Dual Career Service provided very useful information in English, such as social security, tax, language learning, or the University Family Service. Both their technical and psychological support proved to be very important to my final job search success. Generally speaking, through my 12-month-plus collaboration with the Dual Career Service, I was in contact with very professional and nice people. Not only have they always reacted to my questions in a prompt manner, but also they never hesitated to give me personal advice.”
Yvonne Eder suggests that partners should get in touch with FAU´s Dual Career Service as soon as possible before their arrival in the Nuremberg Metropolitan Region, so that they can best be advised: “The sooner people contact me, the better I can prepare myself for someone and adjust my support to their individual needs.” The free-of-charge, individual and comprehensive counselling is that some-thing which distinguishes FAU´s service from an average job agency: “The Dual Career Service does not facilitate jobs in the classical sense, it rather functions as a door opener to ease the access into the regional job market,” Yvonne Eder explains. “As a skills assessment coach, I can furthermore offer career-oriented coaching which can provide good support when it comes to professional reorientations or return to work.”
The Dual Career Service is an example of FAU´s dedication not only to helping national and international elite researchers join the university, but also to supporting their life partners´ professional career, enabling them to continue with their jobs once they come to the Nuremberg Metropolitan Region.