Sandra Knopik is one of the many international students in Sweden that were looking to start a career here. When she participated in an AI-matchmaking event, she didn’t know what to expect but ended up as a perfect match to the start-up Grafren who she now cooperates with for her Master thesis.
Sandra is from Curitiba in the south of Brazil where she did her Bachelor’s Degree in electrical engineering.
– After I finished my bachelor’s degree, I first worked in Brasil as an engineer but after some time I realised that I wanted some international experience and started looking at Master programmes abroad.
Getting to know the Swedish workplace culture
Sandra found her way to the master programme in Industrial Engineering and Management at Linköping University where she got accepted. She also got a scholarship from the Swedish Institute to support her studies. It was during her first summer in Sweden when she was looking for a summer job that she realized that it was quite hard for her to reach out to the Swedish employer’s.
-Therefore, I participated in Linköping University’s career programme for international students. It has helped me understand the Swedish workplace culture and recruitment processes.
During the programme she got a tip to participate in an matchmaking event where an AI do the matches between companies and talents, and she did not hesitate to apply.
-I applied just to see what could happen and the turnout was amazing! When I did my application, I thought it was a bit hard at first since you usually adjust your application the specific position or company you are applying to. With an AI doing the matches I had to be more general in my cv and cover letter. What I was very clear about in my cover letter was my past experiences but also what I wished to work with in the future.
It just clicked
Sandra got matched with two companies and with one of them, Grafren, it just clicked. Grafren works with technologies for graphene flakes separation and coating. The technology is used to create textiles and glass fibres with functions such as electrical conductivity, Joule heating and force/pressure sensing.
-When the meeting first started it was a bit confusing, we were both unsure of the concept. But when we got to talking it was a nice meeting and I was not nervous at all since It was more of a conversation than an interview. They were looking for someone to lead the work with a new innovation and it was a perfect match for me.
Straight forward and kind
Sandra is right now working on her master thesis along with Grafren and her project is about electrically conductive textiles that have the ability to heat up. She is right now working on finding the right market niche for this kind of solutions. Sandra states that she really enjoys the company culture in Sweden and especially at Grafren.
-Working at Grafren is a really nice experience, we have a free atmosphere where we can speak and make suggestions freely. The contact I have with other Swedish companies is also very positive. I find that people are always trying to help you in a way that is straight forward but also very kind.
If your applying to our next matchmaking
Lastly Sandra shares her advice to students who are applying to the matchmaking.
-Be honest about your competence and background and always communicate your goals. The best thing you can do is be yourself and speak from your heart!
Sign up for our next matchmaking event here!