This winter semester 2020/21, the Faculty of Electrical Engineering, Computer Science and Mathematics has a total of 72 enrolled international students - out of a total of 134 at the whole UPB. Every year, shortly before lectures start, there is a special Welcome Week for the group of students from all over the world to welcome them at the University of Paderborn, to give them all the information they need to start their studies and to make it easier for them to connect with each other. As usual, students meet in the lecture hall, explore the campus together and get to know each other a little better in a relaxed atmosphere in a pub. This is of course not possible in pandemic times. Nevertheless, students from all over the world should not start their first semester in Paderborn without a welcome and a little star help - for this reason the Welcome Week took place for the first time in digital form, as Welcome (Video) Chat.
A few days in advance the students were welcomed by Dean Prof. Dr. Peter Schreier via video message; on 19 and 20 October there was then an extensive program via Videochat: It began with a greeting by the head of Department, Prof. Dr. Holger Karl. He gave the students all the basic information they needed about studying, living and working in Paderborn and the OWL region. Afterwards, all subject areas of the professors were introduced and a PAUL training was given.
On the second day, the Hochschulsport (University Sports Department) started by presenting its course program and booking system. Afterwards there was specialist input from Prof. Dr. Marco Platzner (Computer Engineering), Dr. Harald Selke (Computer Science) und Prof. Dr. Bärbel Mertsching (Electrical Systems Engineering). Afterwards, the Lernzentrum Informatik (Learning Center for Computer Science, „LZI“) presented its Buddy Program, in which German students support their fellow students from abroad in all aspects of their studies and life organization. The student councils also offered a video conference to inform about their activities and offer help. They ended the event with a Q&A session to answer all questions regarding the start of the semester.
Despite the exceptional circumstances, the international students were able to meet the professors and student councils (virtually), learn how to use PAUL and clarify any uncertainties at the start of their studies.
If you have any questions or uncertainties regarding courses and lectures, PANDA is the first point of contact for students! Otherwise, your mentors are always happy to help.