Internship at Evonik

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Image: Omar Zeair/Jessica & Jens Handt

A dream I had before coming to Germany to join MAP was to work in the field of chemical process simulation and optimization. This is a field I was very much in love with. Before joining MAP, as always when embarking on a new life journey, I had my doubts about whether the programme is the best choice for me. However, the interdisciplinary nature of MAP, the fact that it is international, and its ‘elite’ status were all factors that led me to my decision to join the programme – a decision I am now very grateful to have taken.

I started my six-month internship with Evonik in the process simulation team in July 2021. I first got to know Evonik from the soft skills course we received as MAP students from Dr. Andreas Hoff who is Senior Vice President Process Technology in Evonik and part of the MAP advisory board. Evonik is one of the world’s leading companies in the specialty chemicals. I got very interested in Evonik and decided to apply for an internship.

My experience in Evonik was amazing. I got the opportunity to work on three challenging projects, one of which an especially difficult research project. My task was to model phase separation of a three-phase mixed solvent electrolyte system in the polymer production process. The project was unchartered territory for the Evonik team, and we had to discover together what we can do. I can definitely say that the courses in MAP helped, especially that I specialized in advanced processes and computational material and process simulation for my focal subjects. What I believed helped me most, though, is the skill of learning how to learn. Our training in MAP prepares us for dealing with complex scientific concepts by learning how to find, understand, and analyze scientific literature. The fact that I also encountered many different subjects in MAP I previously had little contact with made me more confident when tackling new problems.

At the end, my internship with Evonik was very successful. I am preparing now to start my master’s thesis also with Evonik in the field of modelling carbon dioxide capture by amines. Such work has always been a dream I had before coming to Germany, and I am very grateful for having the opportunity to pursue it.


By MAP student Omar Zeair