During a digital trial study week, prospective students from South America were able to get to know the SRH University Heidelberg. Sarah Grabe reports from the Admission Office.

 

Finding the right degree programme can be a challenge, especially if one lives abroad and wants to study in Germany. A trial study week ‘Probestiduinwoche’ can help with this decision. Often visiting a German university is not possible because of the distance, and the current Corona situation does not help either. In order to give pupils from South America an insight into student life and study programmes despite Corona, the SRH University Heidelberg has organised a digital trial study week. This event is part of the „Welcome to the World of CORE “ Project, within the initiative “Betreuungsinitiative Deutsche Auslands- und Partnerschulen (BIDS)” from DAAD.

Twenty seven pupils from Paraguay, Brazil and Argentina participated in the digital trial study week of the SRH University Heidelberg between the 23rd  and 26th November, 2020. On the first day, the Vice-Director Markus Breuer welcomed the students. Afterwards, they were able to visit the campus virtually. The digital campus tour led to different locations on the campus, which were introduced by short explanatory videos: the library, gym, cafeteria, and central services of the university, just to name a few. The students had to pay attention to the videos in order to be able to solve tasks regarding the corresponding location. A unique selling point of the university could not be missing on the trial day: Ms Gusset-Bährer from the Academy for University Teaching presented the CORE Principle in a workshop and the participants interactively got to know the special teaching/learning model of the SRH University Heidelberg.

From the second day, the pupils were able to take part in 12 different courses regarding bachelor’s degree programmes at SRH University Heidelberg. They were able to gain an insight into the degree programmes as well as speak directly with the professors. The programme was rounded up by various workshops: in the workshop „Intercultural Competences“ the participants reflected on the differences between their own and the German culture, worked on critical incidents, and discussed possible solutions for misunderstandings that arose. In the presentation on how to apply for a university place in Germany, the participants learned how to write a CV and a letter of motivation in German. In addition, the pupils were able to ask questions live to the students of the university, the Admission Office and the International Office.

On the last day, two graduates of the SRH University Heidelberg gave the students an insight and tips for the time after graduation. In one alumni presentation, Oliver Schlenker (company: Game in Motion) and Luis Langner (company: Bildbrauerei) talked about founding their companies and their current work. Finally, the students gave their feedback regarding the entire week. One student praised the exchange with the SRH students: „The conversation with the students gave me useful tips“. Other students reported on their decision to study: „I got to know many courses of study and it helped me choose a career“ and „when I watched different lectures, I could finally decide in which field I will study“.

There was one suggestion for improvement though: the wish to be able to attend the trial study week on site in Heidelberg. Since 2020, due to COVID-19, the trial week had to take place online and unfortunately not in Heidelberg, as originally planned. We hope that next year in 2021 we will be able to welcome the students from Latin America to Heidelberg, thus fulfilling this wish.

Under the following link you can find information about the BIDS project at the SRH University Heidelberg: link.