Half of the funding for the Germany Scholarship programme comes from the federal government and the other half is provided by companies, foundations or private donators. In 2011, the Germany Scholarship programme was launched nationwide with the aim of providing financial aid to gifted students. Every year since then, scholarship recipients have been receiving 300 euros per month for a period of one year. A base of scholarship donators has developed over the course of the past decade who regularly donate money to support gifted and committed students at Ulm University as well as at many other universities. The new Germany Scholarships were awarded at the 10-year anniversary celebration, which took the form of a virtual ceremony.
The Federal Ministry of Education and Research initiated the Germany Scholarship programme with the aim of establishing a new scholarship culture in Germany. Criteria such as a good marks, social commitment, special educational biographies and previous employment are taken into account when selecting the scholarship recipients. For the first round, a total of 34 Germany Scholarships were awarded at Ulm University for the 2011/2012 winter semester. Over the past decade, around 400 students at Ulm University have received more than one million euros in financial aid in the form of Germany Scholarships. On average, 61 students have received one of these scholarships each year.
For the current funding period 2020/2021, 71 scholarships have been awarded with the support of 26 sponsors. Vice President for Teaching Professor Olga Pollatos, thanked the scholarship donators for their dedication during the virtual celebration. “We are delighted to be able to look back upon ten successful years of the Germany Scholarship programme. The scholarships enable committed and gifted students to focus even more on their studies. In cooperation with our sponsors, we hope to be able to better prepare young people for starting their careers. The personal contact between scholarship recipients and their sponsors can help with this”, says Professor Olga Pollatos.
Five sponsors who have been supporting the Germany Scholarships at Ulm University since the beginning were also honoured at the ceremony: Allianz SE/Allianz Deutschland AG, Karl Storz AG, Waldburg-Ziel Kliniken GmbH & CO. KG, the Ulm University Society (Ulmer Universitätsgesellschaft, UUG) and the University and Rehabilitation Clinics of Ulm (Universitäts- und Rehabilitationskliniken Ulm, RKU). Janina Burkhardt, who works at Allianz in the “Employer Branding/Personnel Marketing” department, describes the advantages of the Germany Scholarship programme and notes that the insurance company’s commitment goes above and beyond the purely financial aspect of support: “The Germany Scholarship programme is a great opportunity for us to support young people on their way to becoming professionals and to accompany them part of the way. We offer our scholarship holders opportunities to learn about Allianz and how they can start a career with us. We invite interested scholarship holders to join our talent pool and offer them opportunities such as individual career advising sessions or participation in exclusive events”.
To mark the anniversary, former scholarship holders were invited to participate virtually and share their experiences with the Germany Scholarship with Professor Dieter Rautenbach, vice president for careers at Ulm University.
For Jeannette Schnopp, the Germany Scholarship was a personal stroke of luck. The contact with her scholarship sponsor, Wüstenrot & Württembergische AG (W&W), enabled her to take the first steps on her career path while still studying. “Thanks to the Germany Scholarship, I was able to fully concentrate on my studies. I also benefited from the contact with my scholarship sponsor. There, I was able to participate in internal seminars and lectures and work on personal development. I gained professional experience during two internships at W&W, and after my first internship, the company had already offered me the prospect of employment once I finished my studies”, Jeannette Schnopp recalls. Following her master’s degree in actuarial science and business mathematics, she now works for her former scholarship sponsor in the life insurance division.
Dr Tobias Englert, who now works as a development engineer at Liebherr-Werk Biberach GmbH, also benefited from the financial aid he received during his electrical engineering studies at Ulm University. “The Germany Scholarship enabled me to be financially independent, which gave me more flexibility in my studies. It was also a great recognition of my performance up to that point, which gave me additional motivation as I continued my studies”, says Dr Englert, who did his PhD at the Institute of Measurement, Control and Microtechnology.
Interested sponsors can find out more about the Germany Scholarship programme for gifted and committed students at Ulm University. The next application process for students will begin in the autumn of 2021.
Text and mediacontact: Daniela Stang
Translation: Kate Gaugler