By Benjamin Tam, Year 3, Maritime Studies with ITP Specialisation
Interned in Peter Cremer (S) GmbH
"In these 3 months, I have been to Bangkok to inspect a vessel we chartered, to an oleochemical plant in Malaysia where the company ship products from and met with both brokers and traders from Ukraine and Germany."
The process of securring this internship; my first, was a pretty intense one. I didn't see any other short cut but to put in some good old fashioned hard work to get my resume in place, followed by due diligence in researching on the industry/companies and of course preparing for the interview. Both CAO and CEIT hab been very helpful in providing me the framework where I can build these capabilities up and when achieved to a certain level, subsequent applications for internships or even jobs would be much easier.
In preparation for the interview with Peter Cremer, the speaker series organised by CEIT have been helpful in providing a basic understanding of the industry. CEIT also made the effort to advice and mentor us which was especially helpful for those of us experiencing our first formal interview. Prior to the interview, I also met up with some seniors who had just been through similar internships to get a clearer picture of what to expect and what the companies out there were looking for.
In the office, it is a dynamic environment as no one trade is the same as another. Contracts, certifications and requirements vary from country to country. Risks and demands also changes along with the different counterparties and their respective cultures/business practices that they have; all of which have to be managed and even capitalised on by the traders and the supporting departments. Whether it was the routine shouting across the tables to bounce opinions on price changes and strategies, the phone calls to global offices often in their native tongue; there was never a dull moment here.
The view from my desk of the Port of Singapore also puts into perspective and accentuate that this is a global business. I am also fortunate to be a company that have put in time and resources to groom us, making my experience here nothing short of amazing. The staff there are warm, welcoming, more than willing to help/teach and the programme was thoughtfully structured to expose us to the different departments of the company.
Thought demanding and stressful at times, this internship has taught me so much more beyond the books and lectures and offered me a glimpse into what my lifelong career could be like.