Berlin Here I Come

Hi! My name is Mason Roadcap, I am from Harrisburg PA and I am currently studying Marketing and Supply Chain Management.  While I am a sophomore at the University of Pittsburgh, I am planning on graduating next Spring, after only six semesters.  Outside of my classwork I am very involved around the University.  I am an active member of the Sports Business Association and Phi Beta Lambda, a professional business organization.  I am also a Student Equipment Manager with the University’s Athletic Equipment department. I currently work to help to manage equipment inventory, issue team gear, and prepare team equipment for the baseball, softball, soccer, cross-country and track & field, gymnastics and wrestling teams.  Beginning in August I will be transferring to work with the football equipment team.

I have travelled abroad in the past both for personal and academic purposes. In May of 2018 I participated in the Plus3 Costa Rica program where a group of about 20 students traveled to Costa Rica for two weeks to study the history, culture and economy of Costa Rica.  Our studies there focused on the supply chain of coffee and included site visits to coffee farms, mills, roasters, exporters, and sellers as well as cultural sites around the country.  We were also able to stay with host families for the duration of the trip. This was my first time seriously leaving the country and submerging myself into a foreign culture. I enjoyed the experience so much that I went abroad again during spring break this past semester.  This program involved a three-credit course where we studied the history, culture and economy of China throughout the semester and spend 10 days in country during spring break. The value of both of these experiences was incalculable and I quickly realized that I had to seize every possible opportunity that I could to study abroad.

This is what motivated me to seek out the International Internship Program.  After becoming more experienced abroad I sought a program that gave me more independence. I was also looking for a more hands on type of learning; an internship as opposed to simply coursework. After looking at the location options I quickly found that Berlin was the perfect location for me.  I come from a German background and my mother studied abroad in Germany during college, therefore, I thought it would be cool and interesting to connect with my past and learn about my cultural history.  In addition to my personal reason for choosing Berlin there are many professional and academic reasons for decided to work there.  Berlin is the economic center of Europe making it the perfect place for me to learn about the application of the business concepts that I’ve learned about in the classroom. It also appeals to my interest in entrepreneurship since it is a major center for innovation in Germany. All of these factors indicated to me that there was no place for me to intern other than Berlin.

With each experience up to this point I have grown as a person. Every trip abroad has allowed me to learn about and gain insight into the diverse cultures around the world. Since I have never been to Europe my first goal for this trip is to learn about German and other European cultures and see how they differ from those in Central/South America and China.  While interning in Germany I would also like to gain as much professional experience as possible and learn as much as I can about the field of marketing, especially in the international market.  Ultimately, I would like this experience to allow me to grow as a person and as a businessman and I would like it to increase my cultural awareness and sensitivity to help me in international experiences in the future.