Brandt School Universität Erfurt

AGEP Professional Reintegration Workshop for Students from Africa, Asia and Latin America

With their final semester at the Brandt School approaching, it is time for the students of the MPP Class of 2016-18 to work on their Master theses and to start getting prepared for their professional life after the Brandt School. While international students who are planning to return to their home countries have skills and knowledge to offer and to put to work for their societies, they might also face challenges regarding their reintegration into the domestic labor market. How to prepare a career strategy and to make it work, before and after their return home?

This is where the format of the reintegration workshop, organized under the auspices of the AGEP (German Association of Postgraduate Programmes with Special Relevance to Developing Countries) network and taking place at the Gustav Stresemann Institute in Bonn, comes in. It aims at preparing students from Africa, Asia and Latin America for a successful (re-)entry into their home countries’ labor markets after their studies in a development-related program in Germany. The workshop consists of a diverse mix of lectures and interactive sessions including personal experience reports by alumni who have had a successful professional return, application training and simulations.

The Brandt School has been a member of the AGEP network since April 2017 and appreciates very much that three of its current students had the opportunity to attend such a two-and-a-half day reintegration workshop in January or February, respectively. In total, 60 students from 18 AGEP member programs attended the two workshops, which enabled them to network and to gain additional qualifications as intended by the AGEP.

 “It was a success”, summarizes second-year student Lanre Michael Agbajeola from Nigeria who attended the workshop from February 02 to 04, 2018. Lanre called it “an eye opener” because he realized in an exercise of discussing work experiences with a partner “how short I have been selling myself on my CV, there were quite some things which should have been included on my résumé but never came to my mind. For example, the participation [in the] African association program in Erfurt and the Global Anti-Corruption Campaign project group [were] not included on my CV.” The reintegration course also enhanced his “level of awareness” with respect to “avoiding some simple mistakes that someone might be prone or vulnerable to do when applying for jobs”. The workshop provided a great opportunity to increase one’s network and Lanre “cannot say anything else but to advocate for more of this kind of workshop”.

You can find more information about the AGEP and its events and activities on their website