Karin Ressel

Ashoka Fellow
Bremen, Germany
Fellow Since 2010


This profile was prepared when Karin Ressel was elected to the Ashoka Fellowship in 2010.
The New Idea
Karin has invented a set of hands-on learning modules that simulate real-life work experiences in order to support young people identify their strengths and to prepare them for the practical aspects of a future career. Berufsparcours® (which roughly translates as profession circuit) targets young people from grades 8 to 10 who, during one day, pass through individual learning stations where they can test different technical professions, from a mechanic to a policeman or a secretary, in a very practical manner. To create a long-term and effective intervention for youth, Karin works with schools to implement her modules and toolkits into curricula to provide outlets for youth to test their interests.

Karin has also brought her learning modules to companies. She works with employers (i.e. many of Germany’s largest industrial enterprises) to integrate them into local job fairs and recruitment processes, thereby allowing for direct, hands-on interaction between recruiters and applicants. Berufsparcours® is transforming the recruitment practices of companies, from a reactive application process to a process that involves proactive, personal outreach and the qualifications of broader target groups.

Each year Berufsparcours® conducts 110 Profession Tours in schools and 90 company fairs in eight German counties, reaching approximately 50,000 pupils yearly. The success of Berufsparcours® has led Karin to license her modules to student-run companies and schools directly, who then spread the product further.
The Problem
The Strategy
The Person

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