The Journey of a Macedonian Frankfurt School Alumna
Master in Management / 11 February 2021
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Master in Management Class of 2017
Sanja now works as a Business Expert at API Cluster Commerzbank in a dynamic team playing a big part in the digitalisation journey of the bank.

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When Mrs. Aika Bolat, Programme Manager at Frankfurt School, proposed the idea of conducting a workshop at FS, I immediately said yes. As a Frankfurt School (FS) Alumna, it felt amazing to be back again.

…giving back to Frankfurt School

The objective of the workshop was to present the API Banking Cluster of Commerzbank and the new agile way of working, the challenges we face as well as to interact with the students and exchange ideas. Together with Prof. Dr. Daniel Beimborn, Instructor of the Digital Transformation course, we designed the workshop with the use of three different case studies. The students had the opportunity to analyse the challenges we face on a daily basis and helped us find suitable solutions. For me and my colleagues from the Commerzbank, it was very insightful to get fresh perspectives.

The students were amazing and presented astonishing results in such a short time. We also discussed with them the possibility to meet again to follow up on their presented results. For alumni, there is no greater pleasure than sharing the skills, experience and lessons we learned with the young professionals being educated at FS. As Ivan Sutherland said, “Knowledge is a rare thing – you gain by giving it away.”

Studying at Frankfurt School

My 18-month journey at FS was an amazing and invaluable experience both personally and professionally. What are my impressions? To start with, the lectures and the professors are awesome at utilising their knowledge and broad experience. We were also given the opportunity to join many workshops and career fairs which I found both intriguing and beneficial.

Have you ever thought of studying and working at the same time? Although challenging at times, thanks to the 3-day model at FS this was actually possible. Being able to experience this personally, I have to say, this is one of the best features of the MiM programme. I was fortunate to get a Working Student Position at J.P. Morgan and gained professional experience right from the start. Combining work and study at the same time can be sometimes difficult and requires good time management skills but on the flip side, it prepares you really well for the career life after FS.

It is also worth mentioning the immense support of the overall FS staff for the students, especially for a foreign student. At the beginning you need a lot of help whether it is visa, lecture or German language skills-related questions. The staff were always there for the students and were able to provide us with fast solutions.

Last but not least, you have the opportunity to meet so many new people from various programmes and classes. Some of these connections have actually turned into everlasting friendships.

Continuing professional career at Commerzbank

Soon after graduating, I joined Commerzbank as an IT Trainee. So now the question, why move from business school to IT? Well, I thought that the knowledge I have gained during my Bachelors and Masters would be a good fit if I combine it with an IT know-how. Plus, considering the huge importance of IT in today’s world I knew this would be a great career move that would open many doors for me in the future.

For the first 18 months I was part of Commerzbank’s Trainee Programme where I got the chance to be involved in various projects and departments within the bank. Seeing the bank’s activities from various perspectives helped me gain valuable experience and knowledge. This also helped me with my next position as I am currently working as a Business Expert within the API Cluster. A dynamic team with huge importance for the digitalisation journey of the bank, working on important topics and interesting challenges but most importantly continuous learning is something that I truly enjoy every day!