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Inside the Heart of Konexio

In a borrowed room in the northeast of Paris, a dozen or so students typed determinedly. This seemingly quotidian scene masked an important social and economic transformation; these students had generally come from interrupted educations and lives, and they were now seeking to build the competencies necessary to support themselves and their families, as well as to contribute to the new society in which they found themselves. One of the greatest challenges faced by refugees in France is developing the skills and qualifications necessary for career advancement. In this class, Konexio was helping them meet that challenge.

Near the end of my spring 2018 internship at Konexio, I had the privilege of working with these students in one of the computer skills classes. The class, conducted in French, focused on advanced competencies in Microsoft Excel. As part of my previous work in this internship, I had researched the substantial value that advanced Microsoft Office skills confer on job seekers. Additionally, in projects for Konexio itself and in my previous internships, Excel had been invaluable for fluent analysis, organization, and presentation of information. Having supported Konexio’s efforts on the back end, I found it tremendously rewarding to work with students directly and to see how our courses were creating a positive impact on their lives. This opportunity also gave me the chance to brush up on my own skills. It was clear that Konexio’s instructors provide patient, engaging, and well-balanced content free of charge to participants who might otherwise not have the opportunity to obtain these skills. I’m excited to see how Konexio grows its impact in the future, and how the students I met will use their new competencies.


David Rathmann-Bloch

Stanford University junior and Konexio intern (Spring 2018)

Re-posted from original content, Jun 17 2018

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