Age: 26
Nationality: American

Erik studied Urban Sociology at the University of Amsterdam in 2015 and is currently a Business Development Representative at Revinate. 

“ITEA 2015 was a preliminary way to begin my career search. At that time, I was still deciding whether to stay in Amsterdam or move back to America. I wasn’t planning to find a job at ITEA right away, but I did.’

Erik found out about ITEA2015 through an email newsletter and decided to approach this event as a starting point to launch his career. He found his current job at ITEA 2015 and started working at Revinate in June 2015 before graduation.

How did your career path go after attending ITEA?

ITEA 2015 was a preliminary way to begin my career search. At that time, I was still deciding whether to stay in Amsterdam or move back to America. I wasn’t planning to find a job at ITEA right away, but I did. Visiting ITEA 2015 was a way to kick-start the process and decide where my career path would take me. Revinate was the first meeting I attended. After Maarten’s presentation, I was sold—I was so interested in their story that I skipped the rest of my planned meetings to focus entirely on Revinate. I made sure that I was able to get an appointment with them during a ‘speed-dating session’ later that day. I interviewed with Simon from Revinate, who was in the same position that I am in now. He set clear guidelines as to what the position entailed and provided an accurate picture of what the job responsibilities were. It was more of an informal session, and a good way for Revinate to meet a lot of candidates in a short amount of time. Other candidates for this position came from more of a business background, so I knew that my course load was a bit different. As my studies at UvA were focused on urban space and its effect on tourism and society, I used my unique perspective and hospitality experience to make an initial impression. After the event, I immediately sent Revinate my CV and had several follow-up interviews. After that I was offered a job at Revinate. I was fortunate enough to have another job offer at the time, but I eventually chose to work with Revinate.

What would you advise international students?

I would definitely suggest to use your connections, both in and outside of the university, as a way to learn more about the opportunities and options available out there. I discovered the other company that wound up offering me a position through a mutual friend on my local football team.

What would you say to non-EU students regarding work permits?

I got a work permit when I started working at Revinate. Revinate was very helpful in the visa process and we worked hand-in-hand to make sure that all my application materials were up to date. My advice for non-EU students is to work with the UvA and have everything prepared in a timely fashion, because often there are delays. Be up to date and make sure you hand in your application on time. The UvA does offer information and advice to non-EU students regarding permits, so use that to prepare if necessary.

What would you advise international students who intend to visit ITEA 2017?

I really utilised the ITEA 2015 mobile app before and during my time at the event. I thought the app was super helpful throughout the entire day, so I would really recommend this year’s attendees to take advantage of it.

Another aspect I found very helpful at ITEA 2015 was the resume workshop. Coming into the event, I definitely had a more of an academic resume and the ITEA staff helped me to shape my CV into business-specific copy. In this workshop, I learned how I could streamline my experience and make the entire resume more concise.

An important piece of advice I would give is for students to research the companies that are attending ITEA 2017. How does the company fit into what you’re studying? Likewise, research the individuals within the companies that are coming. Who are they? Do you have common interests or connections? I think it’s important for students that attend ITEA 2017 to treat their preparation for the event the same as they would prepare for a specific job or company.