Logistics students enjoying lunch at the historical central canteen of Rotterdam harbor. Photo: Krystof Diatka

Rotterdam – the hatchery of logistics jobs

ROTTERDAM (Panorama): «It is always nice to have a fresh international attitude in the company,» commented Kees Groeneveld, an executive of the NCL branch stationed in Rotterdam, on possible employment of Norwegians in the company. But how to get there?

Logistics students in the Erasus University of Rotterdam
Logistics students in the Erasmus University of Rotterdam

When it comes to logistics, Rotterdam could be considered the capital of Europe. The behemoth of a coastal port in the Netherlands brings significant portion of goods to the European market. In other words, the city is a breeding ground of logistic solutions, innovation and most importantly employment. Therefore, it should not be ignored by any European logistics student about to enter the job market as a possible opportunity.

The NCL itself offers internship positions for students within which the language barrier is not a problem since, as Kees Groeneveld said:

«English is the international language of logistics.»

But he also said that the competition from Dutch students might be tough regardless.

Logistics students on the fieldtrip in front of the Erasmus University of Rotterdam. Photo: Krystof Diatka
Logistics students on the field trip in front of the Erasmus University of Rotterdam. Photo: Krystof Diatka

Fortunately, there is an option for those feeling appealed by the possibilities Rotterdam and liberal Netherlands have to offer. The Rotterdam School of Management at the famous Erasmus University of Rotterdam runs an international masters program focusing on supply chain management. Completing this program only takes one year, so as one could imagine there would not be much free time on the schedule.

Nevertheless, considering the position, reputation and magnitude of the Erasmus University, the knowledge and experience with supply chain management gained there is of the highest quality and state-of-the-art.

 READ MORE: Logistikkforum’s first trip abroad – to Rotterdam

«This line of studies offers a combination between the operation and strategic aspects of supply chain management, and I think that if you  put together this with all the practical experience you can get studying here makes up a wonderful masters program,» commented Erwin van der Laan, associate professor of Logistics & Operations Management, who gave a presentation about the program.

The program accepts 150 students every year and one Norwegian student is taking this path at the moment. The downside is that, since Norway decided to keep their independence from the European Union, the tuition fee for this program  is 12.000 Euro. For the EU citizens, this sum reaches only as high as 1.900 Euro.

That and more was revealed at a presentation at the Erasmus University of Rotterdam, which took place during the first day of the Logistikkforum’s three-day field trip to Rotterdam the 13th through 16th of March.

Professor René de Koster during his presentation. Photo: Krystof Diatka
Professor René de Koster during his presentation. Photo: Krystof Diatka

The other part of the presentation handled the development in terminal operation and modeling, and was given by professor René de Koster. During the lecture, he pointed out an interesting advantage of the Rotterdam harbor as opposed to a competing one in Hamburg. With the development in logistics, the shipping vessels are getting larger and larger and the channels of Hamburg are already small for the largest vessels. Rotterdam’s position does not pose any such limitation, which makes its harbor very valuable for the future evolution in logistics.

Regarding the situation on the job market in Logistics, professor René de Koster advises students that «there is an increasing interest in the Euro-Asian market». Therefore, he said, a way for the European logistics students to make themselves easily employable would be to explore the Asian side of the situation.