International Students Testimonies

"One day I want to be a prominent scholar in my academic field"

For Erastus Kalenga Hamunjela, a first dream has already come true when he came to Berlin to study Public Relations and Digital Marketing. He works as a Social Media Manager alongside his studies and is happy about all the valuable input he gained at HMKW. In addition, he is also active as a model: For example, he has appeared in the CSD Berlin Pride campaign and volunteered for equal rights of the LGBTQIA+ community. Well done and keep up the good work!

Erastus Kalenga Hamunjela has been studying "Public Relations and Digital Marketing" since winter semester 2020/21

Erastus Kalenga Hamunjela has been studying "Public Relations and Digital Marketing" since winter semester 2020/21

What comes to mind when you think about your studies at HMKW?

It makes me realize that I have a bright future ahead; HMKW opened so many doors of opportunities for me. From a street kid to a Master's student is a significant achievement. I am, and I will be forever grateful to the HMKW family.

Why did you decide to study “M.A. Public Relations and Digital Marketing”? And what made you choose HMKW Berlin?

I decided to do this course because of the uniqueness of the combination, which one can't find anywhere else in the world. A master's in Public Relations and Digital Marketing is one of the world's best known and most widely recognized. Its popularity as a degree has spread across the world to organizations of every type, both in the public and private sectors. Pursuing a course in Public Relations and Digital Marketing has been my dream and passion - one day I want to be a prominent scholar in my academic field.

I chose HMKW Berlin because the study program is offered in English and also, I wanted to experience how it’s like to live in a big city.

Did you get any work experiences prior to your Master's degree that you would like to share with us?

When I was in Namibia, I worked as an intern in the Communication and Marketing Department at the University of Namibia.

Are you working beside your studies? Please tell us more about your work: What do you like most about your current job position? What is your biggest challenge?

At the moment, I am working as a Social Media Manager for a company based in Singapore. My duties are to oversee the company's interactions with the public through implementing content strategies on social media platforms as well as on the website. This includes blogging, creating social media profiles, managing regular posts, and responding to followers. I also analyze engagement data, identify customer interactions trends, and plan digital campaigns to build the online community.

Working as a social media person is a fun and engaging activity because you are the frontline for the brand or anyone that comes in contact with the brand and every customer and I enjoy that.

The only challenge I have now is the time difference because Singapore is 6 hours ahead of Germany. Sometimes, I stay up late or get up early in the morning to get some things done.

Which seminar did you like the most so far?

I enjoyed the PR lab seminar with Prof. Dr. Kim Murphy and Prof. Dr. Christian Möller. It was convenient, and I have learned quite a lot. It was more of writing and learning how to produce content, write blog posts, press releases, digital newsletters, and camera training. But if I have to be honest, all the seminars at HMKW are fascinating, very educating, and entertaining at the same time. The professors are always prepared.

What was your favorite project during your studies?

It's tough to choose one specific project, I would say all the projects that we did so far were terrific because they were efficient even although sometimes they were very demanding, yet they prepared us for the job market.

With the help of our professors, we can always manage and finish our projects on time and this is one of the advantages of studying at a private university.

What is it like to live in Berlin? Was it easy for you to settle in? Would you like to stay?

Living in Berlin as an international student is ideal, there are so many things to explore. The city is always busy and there is always something happening. Berlin is a multicultural and big city in Germany with a good atmosphere. It was very easy for me to settle in and for the first time in my life, I felt so safe.

The future is unpredictable, but one has to remain positive, I would like to stay in a safe country maybe not just in Germany but anywhere, where I can find a good job.

 

We are really impressed by your Instagram account. Great pictures! Would you like to tell us more about it?

Thank you… Those are just pictures that I took when I am going out with friends or traveling around. Some of the photos were from the modeling projects, which is challenging because I don't have an agency yet.

The pictures with the rainbow flag were for the CSD Berlin Pride campaign, where I took part and worked as a volunteer. Although this was my first pride walk, it was exciting to see how supportive the Berlin community is. A crowd of people showed up with the message of love, understanding, and fighting for the equal rights of the LGBTQIA+ community. This was more like a message of hope to me that hate will end and the future generation will not have to know fear and exclusion.

What are your plans for the future?

I plan to find a good job after my studies to gain more working experience in this field, and after that, I want to go do my Ph.D. I am also planning to start my own Communication or PR consultant company. I want to be self-employed because this Master's has equipped me with all the skills and knowledge that I need.

Which characteristics should students have that want to study "M.A. Public Relations and Digital Marketing"?

Be prepared to work with other students on different projects and be able to communicate. This is going to be a journey that you will never forget.

Thank you very much for the interview. We wish you all the best for your studies and a great time at HMKW Berlin!