Dual study programme at ALDI SOUTH – between job and lecture hall

Qualified employees are a valuable asset. That is why ALDI SOUTH is cooperating with Ruhr West University of Applied Sciences (HRW) in Mülheim an der Ruhr. Niclas is the first student to complete a dual study programme and work for our International IT department as part of this cooperation. 

Niclas, tell us about yourself, where are you from? 

Niclas: I was born in Viersen, but grew up in Mülheim an der Ruhr, where I still live today. Therefore, the opportunity to study at HRW was of course particularly attractive to me.  

What exactly are you studying and what degree are you aiming for? 

Niclas: When completing the dual study programme, I will qualify myself as a Bachelor of Science in E-Commerce.  

You knew ALDI SOUTH even before your studies. 

Niclas: Exactly, before I started studying, I completed my apprenticeship to become a commercial specialist at ALDI SOUTH. That is also why my Head of Studies, Professor Sarah Hosell, informed me about the planned cooperation between ALDI SOUTH and HRW. And one successful job interview later, I was good to start my dual study programme.  

What are the advantages of a dual study programme for you? 

Niclas: I was convinced by the idea of being able to deepen everything I learned during my studies in practice, where I can directly share ideas with experienced professionals. This way, I can enrich my theoretical knowledge with the experiences my colleagues are making in their daily work. This helps me better understand topics.  

And what exactly does this look like? Where are you employed at ALDI SOUTH? 

Niclas: I support the E-Commerce team within the Customer Interaction department. In principle, we are responsible for everything to do with online stores. For example, we take care of customer registration, but also the correct linking of the individual systems internally. 

And that's where you’ll stay during your entire studies? 

Niclas: Basically, all us students work in a specific team for the entire contract term. At the special request of the student, however, you can also be “loaned” to another team, for example for a semester. 

What is your specific task within the Customer Interaction department? 

Niclas: In my team, I have assumed responsibility for user management, as we call it internally. This means that I am responsible for providing accounts for our internal applications. I also make sure that new employees are accepted into our team as well as possible by establishing contact and showing new colleagues the ropes.  

How is work divided in a dual study programme? 

Niclas: In a full-time study programme, you are on campus five days a week for six semesters. This is followed by an internship semester at the end of the study course. Afterwards, you work on and write your Bachelor’s thesis, ideally in a company. Students completing a dual study programme, on the other hand, regularly work in the company from the very beginning. Studies with fewer modules often take a little longer but you learn more sustainably. After spending two to three days at university, I am closely involved in real projects at ALDI SOUTH.  

What does this mean exactly? 

Niclas: I can gain practical experience and assume responsibility far beyond the scope of usual internships in a company. This also offers advantages for my professional career as I am gaining a better understanding of work processes.  

And that works well at ALDI SOUTH? 

Niclas: Absolutely! ALDI SOUTH is a globally active and very renowned company. The fact that I can make a long-term contribution to the success of the company is a great challenge. In addition, all employees – not only students completing a dual study programme – receive comprehensive support. I for one have already had the opportunity of being trained in presentation techniques and English courses, which now help me further in my studies.  

Would you recommend HRW as a partner of ALDI SOUTH for a dual study programme? 

Niclas: Absolutely! The university is modern and well equipped. The relationship between lecturers and students is great. Lecturers react quickly and reliably when necessary. And HRW not only wants to convey knowledge to us, but also teach us a positive attitude. A spirit of initiative, for example, collegiality and of course entrepreneurial thinking. 

What do you wish for the future? 

Niclas: Of course I would like to successfully graduate with a Bachelor of Science degree in E-Commerce – and I am looking forward to the years to come when I can demonstrate what I have learned and which will take me further in my life. 

Niclas, thank you very much for the interview and all the best for your dual study programme.  

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