The Winners of Our Scholarship Gain Advantage over Other Job Candidates in Europe
An interview with Dr Dimka Meridonov, director of Forum der Regionen in Brussels
Why did you decide to give scholarships every year? What motivates you to do it despite the difficult economic situation in which many companies struggle to survive and reduce their expenses as much as possible?
The decision to give scholarships to medical students was taken collaboratively by our organization Forum der Regionen, with headquarters in Brussels, and the governing board of Forum der Medizin in Germany.
The scholarship is aimed to support and motivate talented and ambitious medical students in a period of financial crisis to continue to develop in this noble profession. The scholarship given by us, amounting to 2000 euro is one of the highest in Europe.
What do you expect to read in the essays written by the scholarship candidates?
I have no personal expectations regarding the content of the essays. I would rather be pleasantly surprised by creative suggestions for taking the health care sector out of the crisis it is in now in Bulgaria and Europe.
The choice of the topic of the essay isn’t accidental. In order to build their personal career, doctors have to be aware of the main direction of the health care development in Europe. This will help them find the best place for their optimal career growth.
Could you give the candidates some practical advice regarding the essay so that we can be useful to them?
I don’t want to restrict their creative process by giving definite instructions.
Do you keep track of the education and career development of the people who have won the scholarship so far?
The scholarship has been given for two consecutive years. In 2012 Forum der Regionen awarded scholarships to students from the Health Management Faculty of the Medical University in Varna.
Our scholarship students are supported by our organization whenever they need help to solve problems or to achieve their goals.
Does winning the scholarship provide students with any other benefits except the financial one?
The purpose of the scholarship is to provide young doctors with financial support. It is huge recognition of the winners’ outstanding personal qualities. When they apply for a job in Europe, they will undoubtedly have an advantage over the other job applicants no matter whether it is the labour market of Germany or of any other European country.
This recognition is important especially for doctors coming from Eastern Europe who are not as competitive as their counterparts from Western Europe due to the lack of an employee work record system in Eastern Europe similar to the existing one in the Western countries.
I can tell from my experience as a career consultant that Bulgarian job applicants don’t have equal chances for getting a job in Germany as their competitors from Western countries. The reason for this is because in Bulgaria employers don’t provide doctors with a work record and an assessment of their skills and personal qualities or if they do, it doesn’t comply with the standards adopted by Western countries.
What can students graduating from medical universities expect from Forum der Medizin in terms of support for their specialization?
Forum der Medizin is a platform of several German companies which help doctors find the most suitable workplace offering them an opportunity for optimal career development. We provide career consultations, processing, translation and legalization of documents, negotiations with institutions and getting approbation, recognition of doctors’ specialty, and registration of doctors in the State Physician Register of Germany, recognition of the professional experience of medical specialists, preparation of the documents for receiving child benefits, preparation of the tax declaration documents and organizing doctors’ life in the foreign country. For further details, you can read the information about the services provided to owners of Pautalia card.