In line with Nouryon’s commitment to a sustainable future, we believe in creating a diverse and inclusive workplace where our people feel valued and are engaged to perform at their best. Because our employees are crucial to the success of our company, we are doing everything we can to provide trainees, such as Assane, a new place to work, learn and live.
A thirst for knowledge, perseverance and a high level of engagement - these are three qualities which chemist Assane Kouda brings to Nouryon as he begins a new life in Germany. In 2014, Assane Kouda, a young man from Burkina Faso, Africa, moved to Germany to seek refuge - facing an uncertain future. His determination to build a new life in Germany was as strong as his eagerness to learn, as the trained food chemist learned German intensively while completing various internships.
Assane’s contact with the center for ‘Education and Migration’ proved a great start during this process. This local coordination center runs the 'Job Starter' initiative, which aims to help young refugees to find traineeships. "The program is very effective," says Christina Marie Bartels, HR Business Partner at Nouryon. It offers companies and potential applicants the opportunity to get to know each other better before concluding a training contract during a 'try-out internship'.
During his first visit to the Bitterfeld chlorine plant, Assane immediately stood out with expert questions about electrochemistry and the manufacturing process and after just three months, he secured a role as a trainee in 2018.
Now midway through the program, Assane received the best testimony of all 7 chemistry trainees in the program – not a bad feat considering the traditionally high standards of German education and training in this field.
We are happy to have examples like Assane to show how integration can succeed through joint engagement. “The success of our site and future of our company is built on great people,” says Site Manager Stephan Junker. “Assane’s story shows that there is a win-win for the company and its employees when we come together and build diverse and winning teams.”