Orientation Course

Fundamental Ideas

The Society of Founders of The International Peace University is cooperating with schools, universities, authorities (e.g. labour offices) NGO's, enterprises, institutions, artists and the media to establish an orientation course for young people who have just left school or are about to start further training (university or apprenticeship) but also for those who are looking for work and are seeking to change or improve their job situation.

The orientation course is to support individuals in rediscovering their own vocation - their inner voice as it were - , to choose a profession in tune with their vocation and thus to fulfil their unique task in society. The course wants to stress the voluntary element, it is accessible to anyone who wants to take on responsibility, both for themselves, their own actions in their immediate working environment and for others ( the environment, society).

The process of the orientation course to date has been characterised primarily by contributions and proposals developed in working group Perspectives of Work of the Vienna Peace Talks in 1999. Some of the ideas proposed during lectures and symposia on the issue of work held at the Society of Founders of the International Peace University in recent years as well as at the board and advisory council meeting of the International Peace Foundation held in Vienna in March 2000 were also considered for the concept.

The Responsibility of the Individual

Everything takes its beginning in the individual, their spirit, their soul and their heart. If a person is not aware of their own complexity and conflicting truths it will be difficult for them to perceive and admit these elements in a wider context/ or in society and to make use of them creatively.

Today's fast-paced world needs people who are aware of their own skills, strengths, talents and creativity, as well as their weaknesses and fears, so that they can meet the challenges of the future. It needs people who are prepared to take on responsibility for their own and other people's growth at all levels of society.

Those who have learnt to deal with difficulties and problems creatively and are open for real dialogue and ready to accept the point of view of others, are a valuable asset for any enterprise and for the community.

Individuals should feel more confident in sorting out their personal (internal) matters and subsequently in contributing to the development of a culture of peace in accordance with their abilities.

Individuals and their Working Environment

Requirements for individual elements of business life, be they enterprises or members of staff, are changing ever more rapidly. In the old days, every enterprise had its hierarchy, now is the time to accept and structure new liberties. Members of staff used to be given a fairly clear course of work, today they are overwhelmed by the wealth of possibilities from which they have to quickly seek out the most promising options. They can only do so once they have found a clearly marked path for themselves, their contribution to and responsibility for their working environment.

Thus, we are faced with a change of paradigms which, consciously or subconsciously, has begun to affect both parts of business life, i.e. those who work in it and the organisations themselves who want to stay successful despite changed circumstances. Far-sighted entrepreneurs in particular are looking for responsible, mature and confident people who are able and willing to integrate their many skills into their work. This means that businesses on the one hand need to give their staff new scope for creativity while staff on the other hand must dispose of the ability to become creative at work.

The orientation course, which is prepared and implemented by the Society of Founders of the International Peace University, is intended as one step towards Working Environments with a Purpose. The project (orientation course) focuses on the individual and their ability to help create their working environment to suit their own peace of mind and to ultimately make a real and fulfilling contribution. During the orientation course, we will make first steps towards establishing a network of businesses, institutions, etc.
This network will constitute a fundamental element in the further development of Working Environments with a Purpose.


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