Florian Zahorka

Research assistant | social worker, University of Applied Sciences St. Pölten | AKUTteam Lower Austria

Florian Zahorka
Florian Zahorka


Study Program: Social Work, Social Policy & Management (Master)

How did your studies prepare you for your current job?

I see the master's program as a necessary and essential extension of a previous bachelor's program. Especially for those students who are looking for the possibility of sorting, reflecting, deepening, and most of all searching for scientific-theoretical examination. Ideally, this process culminates in a master's thesis with the opportunity for a specific specialization. The special feature of the study program is its design as a full-time course of study with a large number of on-site events, making it necessary to prioritize studying during this period of life. 

Especially in a time characterized by multi-tasking, it is an increasingly convenient competence to be able or to have to dedicate oneself exclusively to one subject over a longer period of time. Furthermore, the inclusion of business administration courses introduces students to what at first appears to be unusual, but are nonetheless very much relevant discussions in terms of financing, controlling and management in social enterprises.

A study program is an educational offer to people who are willing to learn. The Social Work, Social Policy & Management degree program at MCI offers this with three different majors and can be used in many facets depending on the commitment. In my current job, I benefit particularly of my knowledge of a scientific-theoretical approach.

When I look back on my time at the MCI today, then...

First, Innsbruck and its surroundings are captivating because of the scenic backdrop that never fails to amaze; hence the resulting wide range of leisure activities encourage students to open their minds for studying or enable them to switch off. I particularly remember the opportunities for exchanges, discussions and consolidation of content, participation in extra-curricular events (Alumni Club lectures by national and international personalities from politics, business, etc.) and the interconnection with the University of Innsbruck (use of infrastructure, participation in events, etc.). MCI itself appears to the outside world to have a strong entrepreneurial orientation, and it is hardly surprising that much in and around the organization is oriented towards this approach. Social work seems to me to be in a position to promote critically reflective teaching and learning, and for this very reason to be considered firmly established among the numerous degree programs.

What would you say to someone thinking of studying at MCI:

Do your research, consider to what extent you are able and willing to invest the appropriate time and resources in a full-time study program; to what extent you also want to engage in debate and critical discussion; and to what extent you are willing to engage in a systematic approach to social problems. The program is very versatile and the chance to spend a semester abroad (e.g. in South Korea) is something I can absolutely recommend it.