Alumni Career Portraits

The following alumni portraits give interested persons and enrolled students some ideas about the career opportunities that graduates of Cultural Anthropology can pursue.
Lena Papasabbas

Lena Papasabbas M.A., Trend & Future Research, Editor & Project Manager

"I have always been fascinated by everyday culture. And future research basically means precisely observing and describing the present - and generating functioning models. My cultural anthropology studies prepared me perfectly for this."

Since 2015, Lena Papasabbas has worked as a speaker, editor and project manager at the Zukunftsinstitut in Frankfurt am Main, which was founded by Matthias Horx in 1998. There, she oversees both her own studies as well as commissioned projects from the business world and deals with a wide variety of facets of social change - from the impact of artificial intelligence on the world of work to changing ideals of beauty and the transformation of young people's identities as a result of globalization.

Lena Papasabbas studied cultural anthropology and European ethnology at Goethe University in Frankfurt from 2008 to 2015 and then joined the Zukunftsinstitut as an intern. The cultural anthropological view of her own environment and the methods of qualitative social research provided her with an excellent basis for working in the field of trend and futures research.

Gunvor Schmidt

Gunvor Schmidt M.A., Project Manager Deutscher Buchpreis

"It is very helpful when you learn to find out already in your studies: What makes my environment tick, how does it work? What are their inner mechanisms?"

Gunvor Schmidt has worked at the Börsenverein des Deutschen Buchhandels in Frankfurt am Main since 2012, initially as an advisor for literature and reading promotion. Since December 2016, she has been the responsible project manager for the German Book Prize.

Every year at the Frankfurt Book Fair, the German Book Prize honors the German-language novel of the year. It is based in the Börsenverein's Cultural Projects, Marketing and Communications department. The German Book Trade Reading Competition and World Book Day are also overseen here, as are measures to promote books.

Gunvor Schmidt studied cultural anthropology and European ethnology at the University of Frankfurt from 2001 to 2007 and then completed the one-year advanced training course in book and media practice, focusing on journalism, cultural management and editing. During her studies, she already gained insights into the publishing industry through jobs and internships, and after graduating, she worked in knowledge management at an international aviation group.

Jana Niemeyer

Jana Niemeyer M.A., researcher in the field of eLearning

"Science and Technology Studies and Media Anthropology help me in my work, as does the anthropological view on knowledge and transformation processes."

Jana Niemeyer is a researcher at studiumdigitale, the central eLearning facility at Goethe University Frankfurt am Main. Previously, she completed both her bachelor's and master's degrees at the Frankfurt Institute for Cultural Anthropology and European Ethnology. Her thesis is a media-theoretical and empirical examination of online dating.

Brigitte Hawelka

Brigitte Hawelka M.A., Neighborhood Manager

"I think what nourishes me in this work - with all the tasks that are given to me - is the encounter with people. And that's also what I liked so much about studying, the stories in everyday life. Because we're all human beings, and so it's always about living together."

Brigitte Hawelka has been neighborhood manager in the Goethequartier, Lehe district, Bremerhaven, since August 2014. Trained as an industrial clerk, she worked for many years in advertising agencies and as a trade fair and exhibition organizer in the consumer electronics sector. She then took a second course of education to obtain her Abitur (high school diploma) and subsequently completed a master's degree in cultural anthropology and European ethnology and comparative religious studies at the University of Frankfurt. After graduating, she moved to Bremen and worked for four years at the Bremer Heimstiftung in the area of social services and district work.

Brigitte Hawelka did projects and working groups on topics such as improving the living environment, neighborhood networking, or neighborhood events that have been created in the Quartiersmeisterei Lehe.

Andreas Kramm

Andreas Kramm, M.A., User Experience Consultant

"In my studies, I was always interested in how people use technologies, and how this use effects our relationship to ourselves, others, and the world."

Andreas Kramm was a User Experience Consultant at eresult in Cologne from September 2015 to November 2016. He is now employed as a Qualitative User Experience Researcher at Google in Zurich. Andreas Kramm studied Cultural Anthropology and European Ethnology as his major subject and Japanese Studies as his minor subject in Frankfurt am Main from 2007 to 2010 and graduated with a Bachelor's degree. Directly afterwards, he also began studying for a master's degree in cultural anthropology in Frankfurt, which he completed in September 2013. As a user experience consultant, Andreas Kramm works on the interface, layout, and content visible to users of applications and websites.

Julia Frey

Julia Karolina Frey B.A., Marketing and Media Communication

"Exposure to different topics, cultures, and people during my studies built a ability to adapt fast, which makes it easier to recognize and familiarize oneself with, for example, specific company cultures."

Julia Karolina Frey was an intern in the Textiles & Textile Technologies department of Messe Frankfurt's Marketing Communications and Press division from November 2016 to the end of January 2017. In her bachelor thesis, Julia Frey dealt with the possible changes in the fashion industry through participatory online platforms. Following her internship, she gained further experience in the conception department of a communications agency. For her further professional development, she is aiming for a master's degree focused on fashion journalism, e-commerce or marketing.