How an internship at trivago turned my world upside down
Alessia Scognamiglio had her whole life planned out, but before settling down she thought “Why not take a 6 month internship at trivago…”
Monday the 3rd of April will be Alessia Scognamiglio’s last day at trivago. It brings to an end her 6 month intern position in User Research for the Design team.
Alessia turns 29 next month, she came to trivago from Rome in September of last year, and owns a home back in her native Italy that she bought to run as a Bed & Breakfast once she returned from her short visit to Germany.
But Alessia will not be going home next week to open her B&B, she instead will be moving to Chiang Mai in Thailand!
“Everything in my life was planned out, I bought this house that I was going to run as a guest-house: greet visitors, make breakfast, clean rooms etc. It sounded like a great, relaxed life-plan, but now, after spending time at trivago, I feel like I cannot see the challenge any more; the puzzle that needs solving!”
“I feel grateful trivago gave me such a confused mind!”
How did trivago factor in to this “Life plan” you had mapped out?!
“Well, I had already some connection to my Team Lead here from studying at the same University in Italy. We had the same teacher in common who told me about the position and kept saying I should come to trivago, and I kept refusing saying I better stay here, I have a plan. Eventually my inside voice said Come on! It’s only 6 months! and I gave in, thinking one last mini-adventure would be okay”
So, your first time in Germany, what were your first impressions of trivago?
“My first impressions were that I was scared of the person that was going to be interviewing me! I stalked Mirja, the Design lead, on Linkedin and saw everything she had achieved and I thought wow I am out of my depth! But in the interview she spoke to me like a friend, and we have since become friends! That is one of the best things about trivago, the ‘hierarchy’ is so flexible that it felt instantly like there was no barriers between myself; an intern, and Mirja; an experienced team lead. You just don’t get that in other companies! She was a really inspirational female role-model too, and that is also something that you see every day at trivago”
So what changed in that 6 months? How did trivago disrupt your plans? and why Thailand?!
“Well, I met my boyfriend here at trivago, he has worked here for 3 years in SEM, and decided to move to Chiang Mai, which is a bit of a ‘paradise for digital nomads’, to challenge himself and work as a freelancer. I thought ‘okay, my adventure is not over yet!’ So I will move with him! During my time here I have become a new me: trivago has taught me to constantly challenge myself and be fluid in all I do. I don’t know even know yet what I will do in Thailand, but I am going there with a completely open mind. I will probably rent out my house back home, use that as an income and spend some time doing what I really love: writing”
So this 6 months has had a pretty big positive impact on your life plans!
“I feel like I am going to a new country, with a new love, and a new me! I have learnt so much from living the core values of trivago. They are not just something that you hear on the first week and forget about, you live them every day, and even now after leaving trivago I will continue to live them! I am already planning which courses to do once I am in Chiang Mai, becasue ‘Fanatic Learning’ (one of the core values) has become like a sickness to me! I have learnt so much in such a small time period and I don’t want to stop now, I just want to study more and more!”
“Fanatic learning has become a sickness to me!”
“I have spent the last half a year finding solutions to problems, and now I feel like my life is a puzzle that needs solving, and if it is too easy it is not as interesting. I will leave next week with a curious and confused mind, and I am really grateful to trivago for giving me that!”