Erasmus Traineeship Learning Log – Michael Hinkel – April 2019

Learning Log

  My name is Michael Hinkel and I have just spent a month with TrainingMatchmaker in Belfast as an Erasmus Trainee. At the start of my traineeship in March 2019 I set out to achieve an ambitious number of learning goals – you can find my training plan here.   One month on and this is what I learnt:   

“Canva App”

During my traineeship with Trainer: Christine Watson I learned, how to use Canva, a free platform to help business with graphics, in form of backgrounds, templates, symbols and more.  I was advised by Trainer Tina Calder that there were free Canva tutorials which would help me use this tool to create visual content for business use. I found a few on youtube and then I practised with a task to create a graphic for business use. This is what I created for Trainer: Christine Watson: Canva Graphic Created Erasmus Trainee Michael                   I also edited a previous design to support the promotion of a training course being delivered by Trainer: Christine Watson on 15 April and this was uploaded to the Instagram for Business page for the training company to communicate to the business audiences about the Licensed WorldHost training course that was available in Belfast –  

“Belfast culture and history”

After being in Belfast for a while, I learned lots of new things. During my bus tour to the “Giant’s Causeway”, I drove across many old places that impressed me by their historical background. Furthermore I achieved an impressive view of the Atlantic ocean. I learned about Queen Elizabeth and the shipbuilding industry links to Germany and how the rock formation at the Giant’s Causeway happened – as well as a little funny story about Giant Finn McCool’s wife and how she cheated the Scottish Giant by dressing her husband up as a baby – to scare him back to Scotland!   My Trainer and Host Christine, who works as a Tourism Trainer, also recommended that I call into Visit Belfast to find out about all of the things I could do and see when I was in Northern Ireland.   She also advised me to take the free Belfast City Hall Tour. The city hall is influenced with memorial facts and the tour also informed me about the history of Belfast. I learned that the City Hall is older than 100 years and about the various Lord Mayor’s and I got to see inside the Great Hall and the Chamber where the politicians sit. I also took Christine’s advice to visit the Dome in Victoria Square to enjoy the view of the city and I walked up Cave Hill to enjoy the views and see Belfast Castle.


“Why blogging is so important” My trainer: Christine Watson and other Trainers who delivered a Blogging For Wellness roadshow events project that ran for Libraries NI invited me to join them to learn about blogging and why blogging is so important. I attended the Antrim library event and I also used my time at this event to record video footage of the Trainers for their individual Trainer profiles. I learnt from Wellness Trainer Vivian that people are often scared too much to think about blogging and encouraged them just to start, even before they thought they were ready! This is now my second wordpress blog and before my Erasmus Traineeship I had never before blogged.

“How to use WordPress”

WordPress is the platform that the website has been built on and I learned how to upload new content online using wordpress throughout my traineeship.  

“Quik by Go Pro”

Quik by Go Pro is a free a app that allows you to create short videos in less than 3 minutes. It`s easy to use and your videos can be shared easily. During my Erasmus Traineeship I created 3 videos using Quik.


My traineeship with educated me as to the many free classes that I could take at the Apple store in Victoria Square, Belfast. I attended the courses:
  • Video Walk: Capturing Cinematic Shots
My colleague Gerrit and I learned how to use different options on an apple device to take video footage, we used an app boomerang – I knew of it before but had not used it. We learned in store with the trainer and then walked outside the store to practice skills. I learned how to use an apple iphone device to take pictures from different angles. The tutor gave us a tip to use architecture lines to make the photo more interesting: – Today at Apple free photography course Belfast Erasmus Trainee Michael   He also taught me how to use reflection in photography: – “How to use Google Drive” To assist the workflow, Trainer Tina Calder advised me to use Google Drive. Whilst I have a personal gmail account this is not something I recognised but I was committed to learning how to save and share documents this way to help in business. Political Database I learned that Northern Ireland has a lot of different politicians – local councillors, MLAs, MEPs and Lords. Days of The Year Each day has many different events such as table tennis day – the website shows each official day to celebrate. This can help inspire online content for businesses. As well as days of the year there were also weeks and months such as Go Diaper Free Week and Poetry Month for example. Finance Admin I sorted business expenses to identify cash and card purchases by month to help with finance administration. Working from Home I had the opportunity to work from home on occasion – this is more unusual in Germany, here in Northern Ireland I learned that when working from home it can be time saving compared to travelling into an office location. I learned that it is important to communicate work achievements.

“English course on OpenLearn by Open University

One of my main learning goals was to complete the free english course provided online by OpenLearn- Open University – I committed to a time investment of 24 hours and by the end of my Erasmus Traineeship I completed 75% of this programme. Once I fully complete this free online training I can obtain an english learning certificate to demonstrate my english skills level.   I found the Erasmus Traineeship to be a lot of fun and during my journey I also met a lot of new friends from all kinds of countries. I found the local accent, at times, to have an impact on my understanding but my English vocabulary has improved and the Erasmus programme is something that I would recommend other people to do.  

About Me:

Erasmus Trainee from Germany Michael My name is Michael Hinkel and I am from Germany. I am aged 18 and I decided to complete an Erasmus Traineeship in Belfast to be able to graduate from my college – working outside of my home country is not compulsory but it is advised. The Erasmus programme funds me to travel and live in Belfast for four weeks. I am studying Business Management for Information Processing and I enjoy playing table tennis and exploring nature.

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