IRONNETWORK: A TRAINEE PROGRAM FOR STUDENTS OF NETWORK ENGINEERING

H. Woellik

Carinthia University of Applied Sciences (AUSTRIA)
The study course Network Engineering & Communication of the Carinthia University of Applied Sciences consists of a bachelor and a master program. During the bachelor program the students learn about the fundamentals of electronic communication and how to setup a complex computer networks. An internship during the 6th semester expands the skills of working in a team and working for the target achievements of a company. In the master semester the students have to look into higher sophisticated topics and learn how to work scientifically.
This publication shows how students can raise their knowledge about technical and social topics with the help of a special project task for working as engineers during outdoor sport events! Students formed in small teams get the task to design, construct and operate the communication network of the sport event. They have to find out all necessary requirements, have to speak with the organizer, have to discuss with the equipment provider and have to take care that the network will not break down. Because of the short time period for preparing and constructing the essential system, the levels of stress and emotions are very high. Group dynamic effects between the different team members show how individual problems can be detected and avoided.
This project spans over the bachelor and master program and combines the different skill levels of the group. It is defined as an internal trainee program which takes some weeks every summer season. The selected sport event is the Ironman Europe triathlon event series which takes place in different countries. The name Ironman is also the reason why the name of the trainee program is called Ironnetwork.
After the trainee program the students really know how to work under stress and precisely. They raise their social competence and learn how to communicate with other engineer specialists in foreign countries.