Martha's story: Overcoming job market barriers with Kiron
For the last three years, Martha has been adjusting to her new home in Hamburg, Germany, 9,000 km away from her homeland Nicaragua. Facing a bureaucratically challenging new country, a two-year gap in her CV, and no prior knowledge of the language, accessing the job market was not so easy.
“At the beginning, it was very hard because there was a lot of paperwork that I have to have here, and most of it was left behind because I never thought at the moment that I would have to leave the country because I came here for a political situation.”
Before her move, Martha already had a diverse CV, first working at an NGO and then becoming a lawyer. While it took about a year and a half to have her law certification recognized in Germany, she realized not having a firm grasp of the language would make practicing difficult. Without C1 German as well, the other option of a university placement posed to be difficult and expensive.
Discovering Kiron Campus
Looking for alternatives, she stumbled on Kiron and immediately start her online learning journey. She thought, “Oh my god, I think this is the place where I can start doing something. And I actually find very, very interesting courses. I found Kiron very, very supportive and helpful because I know all these courses I will have to pay for and I’m doing it for free, so I’m trying to take advantage of it, as much as I can.”
Even though she was excited by the Kiron Campus, online learning did not always come easy. Self-paced learning although flexible requires time management and motivation. Martha was learning and taking care of her children, which meant sometimes she would be studying in the early mornings at 4:00 AM. “You have to have a very, very strong will to persuade you of your goals. I find this for me was very helpful because I can focus now as I focus on this course the first time I can focus on another thing in the same way. Just with my own will.”
Martha took German lessons and focused on an HR specialization to prepare herself for the job market. She has also been completing a course on supply chain logistics, encouraged by her mentor from Deutsche Börse.
The value of mentorship
In 2021, Martha took part in our mentorship program with Deutsche Börse — a capital market company based in Frankfurt. With her mentor, she set up her goals and was introduced to the European working culture, which was very different from previous companies she had worked at. The meetings were productive and his advice guided her through her career transition. She also learned soft skills during their meetings, like time management, which she had struggled with before. Now, since completing the mentorship, she has started an internship at Deutsche Börse!
“It was very productive and I’m very thankful for that because this opportunity came from Kiron.”
To all future learners out there, Martha shares her advice, “Look for what is motivating you. Why do you want to do that exactly and then move forward and believe in yourself.”
We 100% agree.
Find out about our current mentoring programs on the Kiron Campus here. If you are interested in partnering with us or funding a similar program, reach out to our Partnerships Manager, Kathrin Dischereit!