Soft Skills include the abilities to act and communicate confidentially, to give or take feedback, to make compromises, to get involved and to stay flexible. The development of these key competences differs from person to person, and this is where adveisor comes in, because everyone can improve their Soft Skills!
adveisor is the soft skill program for electrical engineers here at the TUM. The one-year program focuses on freshmen students, which want to gain more experiences within their academic career and choose to grow with real challenges. We aim to train young students in more than just their field of study - to evolve into engineers who understand themselves and those around them, who can inspire and animate their peers. The concept behind this is a trinity of knowledge, methodology and personal experience, to be gained and tested by working in teams on an engineering project.
For one semester the adveisees - this is what we call the participating freshmen - will learn methods and background knowledge. Weekly workshops teach them ways to manage their time and resources, to give constructive, useful feedback and to handle the task of managing a project. The adveisees are given a specified project and are asked to develop their own project plan to tackle it. In the second semester they will execute their plan. In groups of 9 to 15 people the adveisees will construct their planned project according to the specifications. In recent years the adveisee teams developed Rubik's Cube Solvers, miniature Segways, rotor displays, autonomous vehicles and built machines to throw balls or solve Sudokus. Along the way the adveisees will experience what it means to work in a team, including the challenges they will have to master and the dynamics a team can develop.
As nobody understands the adveisees better, our tutors are still students themselves, normally in their second or third year. The so called adveisors are coached by professional trainers in three multiday seminars and will pass on their knowledge and experiences. Each adveisor is responsible for one team of adveisees, propagating their gained knowledge within workshops in the first semester and accompanying them during the completion of their project in the second. The adveisors profit heavily from the program as well. They learn what it means to motivate a group, take responsibility for others and to organize events like a presentation for 300 guests.