Feb 23 2022

Why I'm combining my studies with volunteering


Devangi is an Arden University Berlin student, having started studying with us online from India during the pandemic before recently arriving in Berlin to continue her education in person.

She has also been involved in volunteering work beyond her studies and is very engaged with Rotaract, a branch of a worldwide institution. 

Read more about what she's enjoyed about studying and living in Berlin, and how her work volunteering has helped her community and her own personal development. 

Hi Devangi, What are you studying with us?

I am studying for a Master’s in Data Analytics and Marketing. I have started in November 2021, and I was attending classes online earlier, but now I have arrived in Berlin and am excited to go to college and meet my classmates.

What was it that led you to choose Arden?

As a UK based university, with campuses in multiple locations, studying with Arden means I can get exposure to the UK as well as Germany. And yes, the people are so friendly here. Throughout the entire process, I have enjoyed myself. I'm a big fan of the app, and everything is so nice.

What kind of things have you been learning about on your course?

It is all about data. Every day we are dealing with data online and offline – installing applications, becoming a member of something, or using online marketplaces. So, we are dealing with data, playing with data all the time. The course teaches me about how, especially in business, we can make decisions with the help of that data.

What do you want to do with the degree when you finish studying?

I want to move ahead in data analytics. I have done work in marketing for about 5 years, and I feel that this data analytics and marketing course would be a great extension to my experience. I am looking forward to working with an International Company.

What is your favourite thing about being in Berlin?

It is a new experience. I must say that the people are great too. Whenever I have travelled, I have not been familiar with the system. For example, if I am on a train and get stuck or lost, and I am looking for the stations then people help me. "You're new to the city?" They ask, "Let me help you." "Let me look at my phone and let me help you get to your destination." So, the people are generous and helpful. Even, when I went to the bank, the bank people were so nice!

So, you are involved with a lot of volunteering, what kind of stuff does that involve?

I started volunteering in India in August 2015, then for a year I worked in an international organisation where we did activities for the children from slum areas. We gave them food, we gave them warm clothes in the winter, that kind of stuff. I joined Rotaract in 2020 though when I wanted to give back to the community again. 

How has volunteering helped you?

It really helped me in all aspects of my life: personal development, professional development, and then there's an international aspect as well. I live in my local area, but I can connect to people all around the world through this. Everybody is living in a different area, but the mission is the same. “Serve to change a lives life.” That’s the tagline for the rotary this year. So, everybody is in the same boat: wherever they are living. 

For example, when I arrived in Germany I didn't have any accommodation. I was staying with my friend's place in Dresden. And I met some Rotractors in Dresden. We went to the tree plantation and engaged in activities to protect trees. I feel that wherever I go I can find like-minded people.

What has your work with Rotaract involved? 

So, I was a Professional and International Director of our club. There were people conducting professional workshops, such as resume making, there was mask making in 2020, and there were things like storytelling sessions. It helped the community. We also helped people at home through things like webinars. Then, around Divali time, we would go to areas where people are in much need of food, or clothes, and we would donate them around the festival. Then in 2021, I became the District Digital Media Manager for Rotaract District 3060. So whatever projects people are doing, I promote them on our social media, which is a fantastic opportunity for me. So, what I have given I also got back in the experience. 

Right now, I am here in Berlin, but still connected to my club. We are planning to build up the webinars in March with the Sri Lanka based Rotaract club. 

To see how an Arden Berlin degree could change your life visit arden.ac.uk/berlin and you can see some of Devangi's recent work with Rotaract Dresden on Instagram