Is it possible to concentrate on a career in sport after completing high school without neglecting your own education? With the Over-18 Education Offensive, Borussia Dortmund has developed a concept that offers high school leavers from the U19s and U23s the opportunity to take 9 months for themselves alongside their preferred career for the purpose of gaining interdisciplinary qualifications and orientating themselves with regard to their occupation.
Interview and rhetoric training, individual financial advice, occupation planning, lessons in foreign languages such as English and Spanish, the use of social media platforms and building your own website, your first apartment and the contracts involved, rules and social contacts – the key word here being social competence training – all of these things are part of the broad spectrum of subjects that will be taught. As part of that, there will also be a course of lectures on the themes of "Competitive Sports and Drugs", as well as "Building Willpower and Focussing on Targets", and also social projects and contact with peripheral groups in society. Above and beyond that, the participants will complete the qualification to become a B-Licence trainer. This will be carried out by the Westphalia Football and Athletics Association.
"On three fixed days a week, across a period amounting to a total of nine months, we will offer our players the opportunity to qualify themselves further after having completed their schooling, and to orientate themselves with regard to their occupation, so that they can create a plan B of substance should their football career not work out. Our education offensive has been designed in such a way so that the players will miss no training sessions, and will effectively strengthen their everyday competencies", explained the Head of Pedagogy at BVB, Matthias Röben, as he outlined the comprehensive package.
After its successful running last year, three handball players from the ladies' teams are involved as part of it for the first time, emphasising as such the fact that this educational programme is something that stretches over the different sport divisions. "We have brought real know-how into our training centre with the help of ARGE, Signal Iduna Insurance, the DGB Education Centre in Hattingen, different education providers, and qualified advisors", stressed Youth Development Coordinator Lars Ricken.