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Special Report: Class of 2012

Five graduates. Five capitals. The story of Europe's crisis.

AP’s Class of 2012 is an exploration of Europe's financial crisis through the eyes of young people emerging from the cocoon of student life into the worst downturn the continent has seen since the end of World War II. The Associated Press is accompanying these five young people over 12 months as their lives unfold in the crisis, telling their stories through text, photo and video dispatches - along with webcam diaries and tweets straight from the graduates themselves.



Koffi, 22, left her widowed mom in Normandy for "bohemian life" at the Sorbonne. Now the communications grad is heading into the real world.



Hentschel, 27, graduated near the top of his class with a degree in electrical engineering in Europe's top economy. He's sent out nearly 40 applications, and has no offers.



Nicholls, 22, graduated from fashion school brimming with optimism. It took just a week for real life to step in: She fell victim to a scam that left her broke and desperate for work.


Rafael Gonzalez
Del Castillo

Gonzalez, 24, pulled countless all-nighters to win a degree in his passion, architecture, just as Spain's building bust has littered the country with abandoned buildings.



Prassa, 22, mastered English in four years studying at a private university. It's a skill that may not help her much as she hunts for work while hard-right thugs roam her blighted neighborhood.




The entire Class of 2012 series