When Russia invaded Ukraine, she was forced to flee to Germany. In 2023, Oksana participated in the Mentoring Exchange for Refugee Growth and Empowerment (MERGE), an eight-week learning and mentoring program for refugees and people with a migrant background in Germany held in partnership between Kiron, Deutsche Börse and Virtual Internships. MERGE supports the target group with an interest in or already having a career in finance and information technology to boost their skills and prepare to enter the workforce in Germany. We caught up with Oksana to learn about her experience.
Tell us more about yourself. What do you do besides studying with Kiron?
In addition to studying at Kiron, I continue to engage in scientific research in the fields of applied mathematics, computer science, and education, especially delving deeper into artificial intelligence and data analysis.
What has your educational path been like so far?
I have pursued a diverse educational path, with a strong foundation in Applied Mathematics, Management, and Ecology. I hold a Doctor of Philosophy degree in Theory and Teaching Methods of Informatics and a Doctor of Science in Professional Education with a specialization in information technologies. I firmly believe that lifelong learning is crucial for meeting the ever-evolving demands of science, technology, and the labor market.
That’s really interesting! Can you share about your work experience?
I have proven experience in project and scientific activities in data analysis, experience in working with corporate information systems, formation of scientific reports, mathematical modeling and programming. I’ve been a coach of international sports teams as well.
What motivated you to become part of the MERGE program?
My motivation to join the MERGE program stemmed from a desire to better understand my strengths and weaknesses while finding ways to leverage my abilities and improve upon my shortcomings. I sought to enhance both my hard and soft skills, gain access to mentoring and coaching support, and refine my job search skills.
Did you achieve these during the MERGE program?
The MERGE program proved invaluable in helping me develop my hard and soft skills. The mentoring provided me with guidance in choosing relevant courses and understanding how to work on my weaknesses and leverage my strengths. Through practical recommendations, I gained insights into internships and job search strategies. I liked everything about the MERGE program and I now have a heightened belief in my abilities.
How else would this training program help you in the future?
The MERGE program provided me with valuable knowledge in the field of capital markets and sustainable economies. I gained insights into trading shares and other securities, transaction services, and investing in global capital markets. It also enhanced my skills and confidence as I identified my personal and professional advantages and improved my international teamwork plus communication skills. These skills will undoubtedly contribute to my future career endeavors. As I continue my job search in Germany, receiving guidance from the mentoring sessions and completing the MERGE program has boosted my confidence as I now have clearly defined goals and a roadmap to achieve them. This experience has been valuable for me.
What are your next steps after the program?
My dream is to pursue a career in data analysis and machine learning. With the knowledge and skills I have acquired, I am confident in my ability to make a meaningful impact in these fields. Going forward, I will continue to focus on self-improvement outside of the program, further honing my expertise through specialized courses, practical projects, and staying updated with the latest advancements in the industry.
Find out about a related program starting soon here.