I am Carina Blecking and currently in the second year of my apprenticeship as “merchant in wholesale and foreign trade” at thenex GmbH. Thanks to thenex and the Erasmus+ program, I had the chance do a one month internship at our partner company BCE Srl. in Italy.

After a 12-hour car drive I arrived at Caronno Pertusella and had my first day at BCE on the next day. I received a very warm welcome by the BCE team. I learned about their daily routines and was shown around their facilities.

During the following days, Mr. Marco Paticella, Sales Manager at BCE, explained me the company’s products as well as the tasks of each department. His detailed information about different types of burners, combustion equipment and management systems was extremely interesting. As thenex has no in-house engineering department, I always found it difficult to understand technical processes, but here at BCE it became a lot clearer to me!

Next day Mr. Orlando and Mr. Franchi (Technical Sales Managers at BCE Srl.) took me to the workshop for a final inspection of burners, produced for a customer in Italy. I was fascinated to see the MPJE burners at work for the first time! With the technical documentation, we checked measurements and the equipment features of the burners. This experience really helped me to understand the functionality of the burners itself, but also made it much clearer to me how important the accurate provision of spare parts is. Before my internship, I had only seen spares and equipment on paper at thenex GmbH.

The following week I had my first plant visit with BCE’s Marco Paticella and Roberto Lopes. I needed to buy protective equipment for the planned site survey at the Alba Power plant. The plant provides hot steam and power mainly for the nearby Ferrero Rocher Chocolate Factory as well as for the city of Alba.

BCE had discussions with the end users about the best solution for revamping old burners and equipment. The main objective is to reduce emissions and optimize energy consumption of the plant. I felt privileged to participate in such important meetings.

I was really impressed by the size of the machines as we were taken through the entire plant. As you can see on the picture, I also had the opportunity to watch the flame of a duct burner through a peephole. As a final highlight of this day I got the chance to see the Ferrero Rocher Chocolate Factory outlet. This of course is a highlight for everybody loving the Ferrero products.

I have learned a lot at BCE and achieved many new tasks:
Together with my BCE colleague Alessandro I created nameplates for the equipment, developed 3D burner designs on the PC. For finished orders, we prepared and printed operating instructions – quite some paper when you normally work in an almost paperless office!

In the last week of my internship we went to the packaging facilities for a pre-shipment inspection of the packaging of burners together with the BCE customer I was amazed about the effort, since it took almost 2 hours to pack only one burner safely into a seaworthy crate with a waterproof bag.

We finalized my training with a great company dinner in Milano – together with the entire BCE team and thenex GmbH Managing Director – Henry-J. Nientimp, who visited BCE for the occasion.

The training at the BCE company was a great success for me, because I got the chance to gain new working experiences in a foreign country, meet a lot of great people and improve my English. I would like to express my gratitude to all colleagues at BCE for their support and kind attitude, which made me feel very comfortable during my stay. I am looking forward to the next possibility to work and visit there again!

Italy is a beautiful country and I took the advantage to explore some lovely parts of Italy. Milan, Florence, Pisa and Verona. A highlight was surely a dinner at lake Como. I spent a great time at the lake in Argegno and specifically enjoyed the trip by boat to the beautiful city Bellagio.

Arrivederci e cordiali saluti!

Carina Blecking