International degree-seeking students are not just interested in studying in Germany – many also hope to begin their professional careers here. To support such international students at the University of Konstanz, members of the Department of Computer and Information Science together with colleagues from the Career Service and the International Office initiated a novel programme that will help students to prepare themselves for a successful transition from the German seminar room to the German work place. This project, entitled “Your Steps towards Professionalism – The Career Passport Programme”, was recognised in the first round of the “STEMinternational innovative” competition and will receive 50,000 Euros for implementing innovative internationalisation measures at the University of Konstanz. This competition represents the fifth and last call for proposals as part of the STEMinternational funding line. It is a programme initiative of the donor’s association for the promotion of science and humanities in Germany (Stifterverband für die Deutsche Wissenschaft) as well as Daimler and Benz Foundation (Daimler und Benz Stiftung) and the Daimler-Fonds. The Career Passport Programme will now compete in the second round of the competition for a 100,000 Euro innovation fund.
Internationalisation is a central mission for the University of Konstanz. To advance this mission, the university encourages a creative and decentralised development process for programmes, measures and instruments that support internationalisation. The Career Passport Programme developed out of conversations with international students as well through discussions with colleagues from relevant university support services, especially the Career Service and the International Office. “We recognised that the international student life cycle and our university student support programmes should not be designed to only ensure degree completion. We should also offer our students support in terms of career orientation and career preparation”, explains Maria Hesse, the master’s studies and internationalisation coordinator at the Department of Computer and Information Science at the University of Konstanz.
Designed as a certification programme for students interested in working in Germany, the Career Passport Programme will not only prepare participants for the formalities, expectations and requirements of the German labour market, but it will also familiarise them with the German work culture. To earn a certificate of completion for the Career Passport Programme, international students are required to participate in programme events offered in four qualification areas: 1. Application know-how, 2. German language proficiency, 3. Soft skill training, and 4. Practical experience in industry and economy.
According to Alexandra Marenčáková, the Career Passport Coordinator at the University of Konstanz’s Department of Computer and Information Science, the region and Germany as a whole will also benefit from such innovative projects as the Career Passport Programme: “As a successful research university, we can prepare talented international students to become skilled professionals in research and industry in Germany by combining our resources and expertise in Konstanz and by collaborating with partners and networks at the university level and within society.”
The “STEMinternational innovative” funding line was created to help advance internationalisation at German universities and to attract talented international students in the STEM fields (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) to Germany. As one of eight finalists, the University of Konstanz will now take part in the second and final round of the “STEMinternational innovative” competition on 28 June 2018 in Berlin, where the projects will be presented in person.
- The Career Passport Programme at the University of Konstanz is recognised in the first round of the “STEMinternational innovative” competition and will receive 50,000 Euro in funding.
- The innovative project will prepare international degree-seeking students in Konstanz for working in Germany by offering programme events in four different career qualification areas.
- STEMinternational is a programme initiative of the donor’s association for the promotion of science and humanities in Germany (Stifterverband für die Deutsche Wissenschaft) as well as Daimler and Benz Foundation (Daimler und Benz Stiftung) and the Daimler-Fonds.
- To compete in the second and final round of the “STEMinternational innovative” competition for 100,000 Euro, the Career Passport Programme will be presented in Berlin on 28 June 2018.