From Refugee to Skilled Worker

About how a new country also offers new opportunities

We have an appointment with Mohamed Omar Jaamac (26) and Mohamed Yusuf Nur (32) at the Wilhelm Schütz site in Weilburg. Both successfully completed their training here and have been supporting #TeamSchütz as skilled workers for road construction ever since. But besides their professional careers, the two are also connected by their history of origin. Jaamac and Nur came to Germany from their homeland Somalia in 2013 to pursue a better prospect of a self-determined life and (vocational) training. Now they are talking to us about what the early days were like for them, how they imagine their future and what role the Hessian dialect played in the process of integration.

One of the first stations after their arrival was the Wilhelm-Knapp-School in Weilburg, where they took part in integrative classes in order to gain a fundamental understanding of the language and the new culture. It was also there where they met the Schütz company for the first time. As part of the cooperation with the Wilhelm-Knapp-School, Schütz employees inquired about interested persons for an internship. The two of them readily agreed and thus got a feeling for the new job. When they realized after just a few weeks that the work suited them, the training offer was already on the table. Training: Check.

They also settled in well outside of school and professional life and learned new things: “I also have many colleagues in football with whom I have talked. They have helped me a lot”, Jamaac tells us, who is passionate about football and continues to pursue this passion in a Weilburg sports club. Both of them learned German as their fourth language in addition to Somali (their mother tongue), Arabic and English. But somehow, communication sometimes didn’t go that smoothly. Words and sentences sometimes sounded completely different from what they were taught at school. “Ei, Gude!” wasn’t in any dictionary until then… Here and there the Hessian dialect put a spoke in their wheel. They couldn’t always deal with that properly, Nur just confessed and started laughing. Despite the difficulties caused by the dialect, neither of them seems to have regretted their decision. On the contrary, what they like most about their new profession is the variety and the work on different construction sites. “We are on the road a lot. Sometimes in Wiesbaden, Frankfurt Airport, sometimes Gießen, sometimes Wetzlar… You see a lot of new things,” Nur tells us euphorically.


By loading the video you accept the privacy policy of Vimeo.
Learn more

Load video

Video only in German

We are interested in how they imagine their future, so we ask them if they already have plans. “This year I want to earn enough money to buy a car,” Nur tells us. “After that, I want to do some further training.” He was offered early on to take advantage of the many further training opportunities at Schütz and to get in touch as soon as something in particular appealed to him. Jamaac is also determined and wants to take advantage of the opportunity for further training. Having successfully completed his training recently, he would like to continue gaining experience in construction and learn how to handle one machine or another. At some point he might become a foreman… but he says there is still plenty of time for that.

We are happy that both of them are enjoying their new job and wish them all the best for their future.

And who knows… maybe next time we’ll talk to each other in Hessian.