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Emilia Ergin: A lot of commitment for Bremen
September 2, 2020
They offer leisure activities for everyone, promote environmental protection and help people in need: For many students at Jacobs University it’s only natural to demonstrate social commitment. This is also the case for Emilia Ergin. The 22-year-old is part of the organizing team of "Explore Bremen" – an initiative that gives children between the ages of ten and twelve access to cultural offerings in Bremen and its surroundings. Born in Bremen, Ergin is also active in the Jacobs University football team.
The "Explore Bremen" project was initiated by Jacobs University students. Its cooperation partner is a local high school, called Gerhard-Rohlfs-Oberschule. "We go on excursions with the pupils, either in groups or individually," said Emilia. They go out for ice cream together, visit museums, do sports or play board games. "The excursions should be fun, but also fulfil an educational purpose, because the project is targeted at pupils from difficult backgrounds. At home, they often have no access to such offers," the student explained. The project aims to promote equal opportunities and social commitment.
"My fellow students act as mentors. They are in regular contact with the children and serve as role models.” Mentors and pupils – the mentees – exchange ideas on topics that concern them. Together, they reflect on the educational excursions and internalize what they have learned. Usually, the mentors look after their mentees for several years. However, they also stay in touch beyond the duration of the project. The mentors also benefit from this cooperation. "Many of them have moved to Bremen from abroad to study at Jacobs University," Emilia said. "They do not yet speak German very well. Through the exchange project with the pupils, they improve their language skills and gain insights into the culture and social life in Bremen." At the same time, the pupils learn English – it is a language exchange of a special kind.
Emilia's main task is fundraising. She writes applications and exchanges ideas with sponsors so that the project can be financed in the long run. A lot also needs to be organized on other levels: "We involve the social worker at the Gerhard-Rohlfs-Oberschule and of course the parents, that is very important," said the Hanseatic citizen.
Emilia has been studying Integrated Social Science at Jacobs University since 2018 - a mixture of social, political and communication science. "Since my studies are broadly diversified, I have many different career options after graduation. I am very interested in marketing, human resources, but also business psychology," said Emilia.
Emilia's great passion is football. From the first semester onwards, she has been active in the Jacobs University football club, playing as an attacking midfielder. In addition, she supports her coach as team captain in organizational matters.
So far, the women's team of Jacobs University mainly competes in friendly matches against other Bremen teams. "From the new semester on, we would like to become part of [the local club] SV Grohn, then we can also host point games," Emilia explained. The passionate sportswoman is already looking forward to it. Perhaps her team will then be enriched by new players from the North of Bremen: "Our training is open to all women who enjoy football and want to put in a good performance – regardless of whether they study at Jacobs University or not.”
This text is part of the series "Faces of Jacobs", in which Jacobs University introduces students, alumni, professors and staff. Further episodes can be found at www.jacobs-university.de/faces.