An Insight into Community Impact Projects

An Insight into Community Impact Projects

Though we love our little international bubble here on campus, you may be wondering how students at Constructor University get involved in their greater community in Bremen. The Community Impact Project (CIP) is a part of all undergraduate degrees here at Constructor University and it is designed to allow us to contribute to important social issues, integrate ourselves further in Germany, and build off of the theoretical knowledge we learn in our programs. It is worth 5 ECTS and it is a minimum of 125 hours. 

It does sound like a lot of time, but luckily our study plans accommodate for this project in our fifth semester with a lighter workload. It is also possible to complete it earlier in your first or second year. I personally would recommend this as it is an easy way to meet and make friends with students outside of your year. Also, you may find that you feel passionately about your project, so this allows you to continue working on it for years. You can even do more than one, as I did! 

So, how do you join a project? Here at Constructor University, there is a whole office dedicated to the management and support of CIPs. They usually host a fair each semester to showcase past and current projects, so be sure to look out for that to see if anything piques your interest. Typically, organisers will then send emails or put up posters on campus/on social media advertising their project and the positions or skills they are looking for. This is normally the case for projects that have been ongoing for multiple semesters. The basic criteria is that you must participate in a project that somehow relates to your major. There are usually at least five projects that occur each semester, so you will surely find a place somewhere. 

If you cannot find one that you are interested in, you can, of course, create your own. My advice though would be to start brainstorming as soon as possible and ask around to see if others would be willing to join you. This is crucial due to the second important requirement: your project has to fulfil some need in the community and you have to be partnered with a local organisation or institution in some capacity. So, you should set aside enough time to contact the groups you are hoping to collaborate with and to allow for some back-and-forth dialogue about their needs and your ideal plans. 

I began working on my first CIP in my second semester of my first year, as one of my professors and some second-years thought I would be a good fit for it. I was very concerned about the spread of COVID and the increasing amounts of disinformation online so I was pleased to help support other migrants find accurate information about COVID in Bremen online. It was difficult but rewarding, as each week we had to compile the most up-to-date information, write a script, translate it into six different languages, and film and edit our reporting video. We worked closely with the Bremen State Association for Health (LVG). I worked on writing and editing the scripts and was one of two English-speaking reporters. I am very proud to look back on the videos as they were an excellent source of urgent health information. I also made many second- and third-year friends. You can watch all of our videos here! (If your native language is not English, feel free to find our playlists in Romanian, Turkish, Russian, Arabic, or French!)

It is amazing to see the reach that the CIP projects have on campus and in our greater community. One example of this happened recently when CIP students organised a collection effort within 24 hours to donate goods, food, and emergency supplies to Turkey and Syria in the aftermath of a devastating earthquake. A long-term project that will also make a great impact is the “Traffic Strategy for Bremen,” which is assisting the Bremen administration in the development of future concepts for the traffic organisation in Bremen until 2025. This CIP aims to lower CO2 emissions by reducing the number of cars in the city via ridesharing. Some tasks students will engage in are conducting research reviews, collecting and analysing data, and creating surveys to fit Bremen’s needs and options.

The CIP project is a great way to make friends, get involved in social issues, and get further integrated into our community. For more information on CIPs such as examples of past projects, you can read here on the Constructor University website. 


An Insight into Community Impact Projects