Recent UCF Alumnus Lands Job in Vienna, Austria

Marco Funk

Marco Funk

Imagine living in a beautiful and exotic city, learning the culture and interacting with different people.

This was exactly the task assigned to Marco Funk, ’11, when he moved to Vienna, Austria and later begin his job as a research and communications associate for the International Organization for Migration. Funk works in the Research and Migration Law Department, with the European Migration Network (EMN), a Europe-wide network of government institutions, think tanks and NGOs that prepare comparative studies on migration issues in Europe. For Funk, being a research and communications associate means having to fit a variety of different tasks into his work routine. For instance, he is responsible for creating newsletters, brochures and other stakeholder outreach materials; updating the EMN Austria website; planning and organizing events; desk research; maintaining a database of national stakeholders and document proofreading.

Funk spent some years in Italy and the United Kingdom before coming to UCF, and went on to do his master’s degree in Paris, France after graduating. Despite the great distance from his alma mater, he still tries to stay connected to UCF. Funk was happy to share his UCF memories with us.

Why did you choose to attend UCF?

I liked the flexibility of UCF’s political science program, which allowed me to freely choose many elective courses. I was impressed by the huge selection of student clubs and extracurricular activity options, and generally found that UCF offers a good value education.

How has your UCF degree helped you in your career?

American degrees are generally well respected in Europe, so my UCF degree has helped me stand out from others in job applications. I was also able to build job-related skills early due to extracurricular activities.

Were you involved in any extracurricular activities at UCF?

Yes, I was very involved in Model UN since the very beginning, and became president of UNA at UCF after two years. I was also active with the College Democrats, especially during the first half of my time at UCF, and regularly wrote articles for the Central Florida Future.

Have you stayed connected with UCF since graduation? If so, how?

I am in touch with my old friends and some professors, but haven’t been to any alumni events due to the distance.

What is your best UCF memory?

Election Day 2008, which marked the successful result of several weeks of very intense campaign work with the College Democrats.

What is your most memorable experience on the job?

After three months on the job, I already got the chance to represent Austria together with a colleague at an EMN meeting held at the European Commission in Brussels. It felt surprisingly familiar due to my past experiences with Model UN (except for the translators)!

What piece of advice would you give to current students as well as UCF alumni?

Find out what you’re good at, stick with it, work towards becoming great at it, and learn how to convince prospective employers that you’re already great at it.

If you could watch only one TV show, what would it be?

Ice Pilots

What is the last thing you searched for on Google?

Discounted snowboard boots for next winter.

What is your favorite place to visit?

The northern Italian Alps, especially the Dolomites mountains.

If you could witness any event — past, present or future — what would it be?

The fall of the Berlin Wall.

What profession other than your own would you like to attempt?

Bush pilot in Alaska (I was close to actually doing that before starting college!)

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