|The Orientation Course
|"It is imperative to make people develop for themselves that which they develop. Having into
being. Recognizing a person and their abilities also implies having the ability to be leisurely
creative, and to be at leisure is not merely to consume but to be able to perceive the world we live
in: intellectually, emotionally and artistically. Creative, intelligent,
interesting, emotional, artistic people, whatever their abilities, will always be content with themselves."
Prof. Dr. Iring Fetscher
|Phase One, I:
How the Individual Prepares, Retreating to One's Inner Self
The initial stage of phase one is all about communing with oneself, about letting go and emptying oneself. This will help to sharpen one's own perception and to encourage dialogue "with oneself". Several courses, e.g. on meditation, are available to provide additional support.
The duration of this preparatory phase very much depends on the needs of the individual. It is considered a preliminary step for the orientation course and is not linked to the timeframe provided for the phases which are to follow. Sometimes, individuals have already recognized their vocation in which case the preparatory phase is not necessary.
|"However, to find one's profession one needs to hear and understand the inner call for it. It is
a skill that can be taught, a skill the young ones should be made sensitive to early on in life. For
those who have a profession they were called for not only feel needed but actually are needed too."
Dr. Rüdiger Dahlke
|Phase One, II:
Becoming Aware of Oneself and Developing One's Own Creativity
During the second step of phase one, emphasis is placed not only on dialogue with "oneself" but above all on dialogue with others ("one's opposite" or "you" ), the immediate environment, with teachers and coaches. Individuals are encouraged to integrate themselves truly and fully into the group dialogue. They experience themselves as part of the group and are given feedback to their contributions. They learn to see things in their context, to better understand them just as they will better understand themselves and the points of view of others. By recognizing themselves in their opposites - looking into the mirror as it were - individuals can find out whether and how they will integrate into their future working environment.
Getting to know oneself means being confronted by one's own being and personality, one's individual potential, one's skills and talents, but also one's weaknesses and fears. The objective of this phase is to make individuals aware of all their possibilities and to help them find the right direction in life. There are many forms of creativity from which to choose (e.g. theatre, dance, music, books, creative writing and painting, experimenting with language) to experience and express oneself in a variety of different ways.
The individual is more than the sum total of past events. Yet it helps to deal with one's past to understand "who I am and which part of my environment has influenced/is influencing me most."
Individuals are called upon to see, hear and sense for themselves, to decide for themselves how they want to deal with outside influences in the future. Obstacles are challenges too for they bear many opportunities in them.
The orientation course is open to people of all ages and thus becomes a place of contact for different generations. By engaging in dialogue with each other participants become aware of what makes each one of them individual and unique but also of what all of them have in common. Thus they learn how to complement each other creatively to form a meaningful whole.
Becoming aware of oneself
Once individuals have recognized their vocation they are assisted in developing different options and in finding a suitable place for practical training.
Duration of first phase
|"Society at the turn of the millennium is characterized by a general search for
the meaning of life. Work is an integral part of that life. We cannot really escape
the trends of our time and we live in a time where employers want to see their employees
as partners and where employees expect their employers to recognize their worth as
Sir Sigmund Sternberg
At the end of phase one of the orientation course individuals decide on a subject matter and thus choose the practical training offered by the partners in the international network.
During practical training, individuals are given the opportunity to inform themselves on the subject matter they have chosen and to recognize how their potential might be of use in the context. Enterprises/institutions get to know potential future staff who due to their willingness to be responsible for themselves and their social competencies will demonstrate skills which are not taught at schools or universities.
During practical training, individuals may call upon professional coaches (from the Society of Founders of the International Peace University network) to help them reflect on their immediate job environment and to develop new, efficient strategies as a team. Companies/institutions, etc. should appoint contact persons (mentors) to answer questions and provide feedback.
At the end of phase two individuals are given the task to write a paper. The paper is to contain theoretical and practical findings and to show up how individuals think they can put their vocation into practice in a real working environment.
Practical training in a company/institution is to be without payment.
Duration of second phase
The orientation course is concluded by a one-week reflection phase. Questions asked are how individuals were able to contribute their potential, whether in dialogue with themselves, their peers or their superiors. Do they lack the ability to put their vocation into practice?
Individuals are given the opportunity to reflect on their experiences with the group, with colleagues, teachers or professional coaches and to prepare a clear training and job strategy. The goals defined in part one are compared to actual experiences to develop specific steps for future action.
|"The way of strength is through your heart. Those who live for their duties radiate wholeheartedness and
enthusiasm. They know why they live in this world and how they would like to change it."
|As long as we live we will not stop looking for our identity.
Duration of third phase
Fees for the orientation course
The Society of Founders of the International Peace University will make every effort to keep fees for the orientation course to a minimum. They will be determined in cooperation with the partners in the network.
The Society of Founders of the International Peace University will provide grants to enable those in financial difficulties to also participate in the orientation course. One way of financing such grants is to ask partners in the network for support.