“Having worked as an engineer for a while, I realized that I wanted to pursue my career in Project Management. From my observation, many engineers either advance technical knowledge and skills or specialize in the management field. Since I was very familiar with Taiwan, I wanted to experience life here and also to speed up my career development. While looking for a master’s program, I found that the IBMBA program in NSYSU was the best choice that suited my need.”, said Paskal Semerdzhiev, one of our outstanding alumni from IBMBA, College of Management, National Sun Yat-sen University.
With the background as an engineer, the knowledge from IBMBA was brand-new to Paskal, since he had no experience with the management and business fields before. However, thanks to the helpfulness of the administration team and professors, Paskal could successfully overcome many difficulties and achieve his Master’s Degree. “Each professor has their teaching style; they were all experts in their field and were willing to help when needed.”, said Paskal.
NSYSU’s location is one of the most fascinating and memorable things to Paskal. He believes that there are not so many universities in the world, which have the ocean view, and people can watch the sunset every day by the beach.
Paskal is now back in the Netherlands and working at ASML. His current position is “EUV Upgrades Coordinator.” As an Upgrades Coordinator, he is responsible for the day-to-day operations of such upgrades – following the progress of engineers, arranging the needed materials, and interfacing with different departments. The machines that his company sells to customers need improved performance every couple of years (for every new generation of microchips). According to Paskal, an upgrade can be considered a project, and it involves lots of hardware actions, so each project may take months to complete.
Talking about the job-hunting process, Paskal thinks companies have different requirements, and specific positions will require specific training. He believes the IBMBA program in NSYSU provided him knowledge about the business environment, and it helped him develop his career and be prepared for the job.
“As someone without any business or management experience, and minimal prior working experience, it was not easy to find a job that is directly related to management. However, I found the best possible next step – as a coordinator, my background as an engineer helps; most of my responsibilities are related to administration and interfacing with stakeholders. The NSYSU diploma is a ticket to get in the job market, and your motivation and experience are what matter after you are in”, said Paskal.
Sharing advices to the current and future students, Paskal mentioned networking as the first thing to keep in mind. In NSYSU, students will have the chance to meet people from all over the world and work with professors, who have many connections to the local business. If students want to work in Taiwan, remember to take those opportunities to build the network because they might be the ones who help you to find jobs. Second, if students are someone who will probably go back home after the study, spend more time to experience the local culture. Lastly, if students have a chance to work with a local company – take it. It will be a valuable asset in any future job.
Paskal is from Bulgaria. He achieved his Bachelor’s Degree, specialized in Electrical Engineering, in Hanze University of Applied Sciences in Groningen, Netherlands. After that, he moved to Eindhoven to work as an engineer for three years at ASML before pursuing his Master’s Degree at NSYSU. ASML is the biggest supplier of lithography equipment for the semiconductor industry. During his time working as an engineer at ASML, he had to visit the company’s customers, and the Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC) was one of them. He worked mainly in Tainan and spent some time in Kaohsiung before studying at IBMBA.
Interviewee: Paskal Semerdzhiev
Interviewer: Dang Phuong Thao - Alex (IBMBA & GHRM MBA Students Association Vice President)