in May 2008 the German First Generation University Student Katja Urbatsch founded the webpage ArbeiterKind.de (“working class kid”) in order to encourage high school students to become First Generation College Students and to support them on their way to their successful degree.
Thanks to the surprisingly large media attention, the webpage has developed to become the only and biggest German Network of current and former First Generation University students with nationwide 5.000 members and volunteers who are engaged in 70 local groups. Also, over 30,000 people use the website every month.
The initiative tackles many of the problems facing German higher education in a systematic manner. By dubbing youth with non-academic parents as “Arbeiterkind”, it gives them a positive identity within society. Through Arbeiterkind.de, children with non-studied parents become aware of the speciﬁc problems they face related to their social background, and as they meet peers confronting similar challenges, they gain conﬁdence and self encouragement.