What They Say

Prof Dr. Pierre Ritchie, University of Ottawa

Jakob Mainert worked as the Assistant to me and to my Deputy Secretary-General during the XXIX International Congress of Psychology and related governance meetings (e.g, Assembly, Executive Committee, Officers) held in Berlin over a ten day period in July 2008.

Mr. Mainert's duties spanned a wide range of tasks. While some were uncomplicated, most required planning, organization and judgment. Without exception, this young man was diligent and well organized in all areas of his work. He was consistently punctual and well-prepared. He actively participated in the planning and review of designated activities. He routinely took notes to ensure that he had a point of reference and to assist in organizing his work. His suggestions on carrying out tasks more efficiently were useful. In all instances, he quickly grasped what needed to be done, asking pertinent questions to clarify the issues. In addition to being dependable, he carried out his responsibilities with greater autonomy than usually attained by students at a comparable level. He then executed the particular job or combination of assignments very accurately.

We especially appreciated three general qualities. Mr. Mainert took initiative. When he observed that something needed to be done, he undertook the task. In doing so, and as the second generic characteristic, he showed good judgment. He observed what was happening and what was needed and helpful. When he was not sure, he asked appropriate questions. Third, Jakob has excellent interpersonal skills.

From a more academic perspective, he demonstrated a very good knowledge of psychology. His commitment to learning was manifest. Whenever we did not need him, he attended sessions of the Congress' scientific program. Whenever the opportunity was available, he would engage us in discussions on the substantive issues of the lecture or symposium he attended. This was an unanticipated intellectual stimulation for us which we enjoyed. He manifested a clear conceptual grasp of many areas of psychological science.

Mr. Mainert has a strong command of written English both receptively and in clarity of expression. His verbal English is excellent. During this assignment, he also had to deal with substantial amounts of money to pay for services he was purchasing on our behalf. His records were meticulous and he showed high personal integrity.

My colleagues and I were uniformly very satisfied with Mr. Mainert's achievements. He fully satisfied and exceeded the requirements of service as Assistant to the Union Officers. We concluded that he is the best student assistant ever assigned to us. If I can be helpful in providing additional information that would advance his studies or professional endeavors, it would be a pleasure to do so.