Germany Training For African Professionals Opens Second Round

By Shout-Africa Correspondent – The second round of “Afrika Kommt!”, an extensive and practically-based professional business internship program in Germany has been announced. The initiative by German industry is aimed at young professionals and junior executives from sub-Saharan Africa.  Applications for the 2010-2012 program will be accepted for consideration until October 31, 2010.

Participant in the 2008 Afrika Kommt! program (© Afrika Kommt!)

After its successful start in 2008, the Afrika Kommt! program has returned.  After training 19 participants in Germany’s top firms, the initiative of German industry for future leaders from sub-Saharan Africa will hold another long-term training from March 2011 through late June 2012.

Similar to the first round, this next program will include German language training both in Africa (one month) and then for three months in Germany, as preparation for the nine-month practical training in firms within Germany.

Companies involved in the capacity-building program include industry giants such as Bayer, Siemens, SAP, Volkswagen, Bosch, BASF, Daimler and many more. The practical application phase embraces a wide selection of professional fields, such as engineering, health and pharmaceuticals, marketing and sales, information technology and human resources.

Participants will also receive management training, a study tour, cultural activities, coaching and networking opportunities. They are supported after returning to their home countries through an internet-based learning platform, as well as a two-week “refresher” seminar in Germany six months later.

The ideal candidate will hold a university degree, and preferably a postgraduate degree, have relevant work experience, strong English and not be over 35 years old. Women are encouraged to apply.

The Afrika Kommt program was developed by a number of German enterprises and the federal government. Due to positive changes in the areas of economic reforms and good governance, broad economic growth in sub-Saharan Africa and an increase in cooperation by Germany on the political level, leaders in German business recognise the continent’s potential and the possibilities for further cooperation.

The objective of the original programme was to promote the exchange between African future leaders and German Industry, laying a foundation for sustainable economic cooperation in the future.

From over 2000 applicants, 20 promising young African professionals were chosen to come to Germany to participate in a professional training program with 19 leading international firms.

The year-long program focussed on practical professional training at the companies, but also had a significant component committed to formal language training in German. In addition, the participants took part in specialized workshops, met with business leaders and government dignitaries, and will have special services provided to them after returning to their home countries.

A two-week refresher course will take place in Germany in mid-September, 2010.

Afrika Kommt