Back to blog
June 20, 2019

Our partner: Volkswagen

Since 2016, the Volkswagen Group and Kiron have been cooperating to support refugees on their pathway to higher education. In an effort to provide Kiron students with professional opportunities while studying or early on in their working careers, Volkswagen has organized a range of workshops on relevant topics such as job market access, integration and women empowerment.
Christoph Buerglen
Fundraising & Comms

The Project

Since 2016, the Volkswagen Group and Kiron have been cooperating to support refugees on their pathway to higher education. In an effort to provide Kiron students with professional opportunities while studying or early on in their working careers, Volkswagen has organized a range of workshops on relevant topics such as job market access, integration and women empowerment. With this project, we especially want to promote better access for refugee women with an interest in STEM subjects, to the German higher education and labor market.  

Impact

The jointly-developed professional guidance program was developed especially with female refugee students in mind, with the aim to foster exchange between the students and Volkswagen employees. One of the highlights of the program was the kick-off workshop at the Volkswagen headquarters in Wolfsburg, where participants visited the Volkswagen site, met the VfL women’s soccer team, and took part in an intercultural workshop. In 2018, the second round of the program came to a close, and in total, twenty-eight Kiron students and Volkswagen employees participated.

Engaging with an international company’s project allows me to better understand the workforce and labour regulations here in Germany. It also increases my personal career development.

Kiron student Rania, about the VW professional guidance program.
Kiron Student

Period: December 2016 – December 2020

Since 2016, Volkswagen Group and Kiron Open Higher Education have been cooperating to support refugees in their pathway to higher education. As part of the collaboration, Volkswagen has initially funded 100 study places for Kiron students. A particular focus of this mutual effort is on the STEM study fields: computer science and mechanical engineering.

In efforts to provide Kiron students with enhanced opportunities prior to and early on in their professional careers, Volkswagen has collaborated on a multitude of endeavors including aiding refugee students through integration workshops.

In continuum, a recent professional guidance program (“Lotsenprogramm”) was piloted with the aim of fostering exchange between refugee students and Volkswagen employees. The majority of Volkswagen guides are recent graduates and doctoral students, enabling information sharing about either the recently finished studies or the starting of a working career in Germany from a familiar young-minded perspective. Furthermore, Volkswagen offered pre-study internships which are obligatory for studying Mechanical Engineer at several German universities.