Leuphana continues upswing

Leuphana is moving forward on the path of dynamic development. This becomes evident on account of the continuously increasing number of students. During this winter semester, Leuphana has 8,000 young academics enrolled, which is an increase of 700 students compared to the previous year. At the same time, the number of professors has gone up, third-party funds have doubled, and the number of students pursuing a doctoral degree has tripled over the last few years. The development of Leuphana’s campus is also making progress: 3,700 cubic meters of concrete have already been used in building the new central building designed by Daniel Libeskind.

Within the scope of the so-called higher education pact between the German federal government and the German federal states, Leuphana was able to increase the number of places available for freshman students in 2011 and 2012 by around 35 percent. Therefore it received additional funds. Since 2010 Leuphana has been among the fastest growing universities in Lower Saxony. The number of students who wish to study in Lüneburg far exceeds the number of places available. In this winter semester, there were six applicants for each place available. The President of Leuphana, Sascha Spoun, views this development in a positive light: “By accepting more first semester students, we contribute to ensuring future opportunities for a large number of young people going to university now.” Spoun points out that this development does not result in any loss of quality. The favorable student-lecturer ratio achieved over the past years will also be maintained in the future.

College has reached full capacity

Nearly 5,400 students are currently enrolled in the programs of study at Leuphana College. First semester students showed a particularly strong interest in the subjects of Business Psychology, Business Administration and Cultural Studies. The Studium Individuale program, which has been offered for the first time, gives students the opportunity to design their own program of study and has been met with great interest from the very beginning. There has also been a strong interest in the teacher education programs for prospective primary, lower secondary and intermediate school teachers as well as vocational school teachers. As a result, all subjects offered in Lüneburg are subject to restricted admission, i.e. there is only a limited number of places available. This applies to both the eleven major subjects offered at College as well as all subjects offered within the scope of the three teacher education programs. Since 2007 Leuphana has been adopting an innovative selection process: in more than 80 percent of the subjects applicants can improve their ranking in the application process by furnishing proof of extra-curricular activities, achieving good results in a suitability test or performing well in a selection interview. About 2,000 applicants took advantage of this opportunity in the last application process.

Graduate School continues on path of growth

Leuphana Graduate School, too, continues on the path of growth. About 1,900 students are currently enrolled in programs of study at Graduate School, and about 720 students of them have started their studies in the master’s programs in Arts & Sciences, Management & Entrepreneurship, and Education in this winter semester. The master’s programs offered at Leuphana are highly favored by college graduates from other universities. They account for 60 percent of the total number of students and, compared to the national level, make up an unproportionately high percentage. There is also a strong interest in the semi-structured doctoral programs: Leuphana has currently more than 400 doctoral candidates enrolled, which is three times the amount of doctoral candidates enrolled in 2006. By offering services such us the Key Competencies qualification portal, which provides access to all measures of continuing education and qualification provided by Leuphana in a subject-related and chronological manner, and by providing a wide range of scholarship programs, Leuphana Graduate School is attractive to master’s and doctoral students alike.

Professional School expands offerings

The number of students enrolled in the continuing education programs at Professional School has also increased. There are currently around 570 students enrolled in the fifty programs of study offered at Leuphana. As regards the bachelor’s programs, students have shown a particularly strong interest in the extra-occupational program of study in “Social Work for Educators”. The highest number of students has been reported in the MBA program in Sustainability Management. A new program of study is the master’s program in Building Law & Building Management. This program is marked by an innovative teaching concept that combines the fields of building law, building economics and building engineering with a strong focus on practical management. Another continuing education program, namely the master’s program in Competition & Regulation (LL.M.), is planned for next year. This program will be held entirely in English and aims to offer students the opportunity to specialize in the law of competition and regulation – an opportunity that is unique in the German academic landscape.

Digital School opens up new chances

The new Digital School at Leuphana aims to give students all over the world the opportunity to participate in the educational programs of Leuphana via the Internet free of charge and without being subject to any admission restrictions. Leuphana is the first German university that has bundled its digital course offerings this way. A special feature of the Digital School is the awarding of credit points. Depending on the home university, these credits may be counted towards the participating student’s degree program.

Participants in the first Leuphana online course “ThinkTank Cities” will design models for future life in urban areas. This project will be chaired by the renowned architect Professor Daniel Libeskind. For more information, please see www.leuphana.de/digital-school. The course will start on January 9, 2013 and will terminate in April next year.

Quality is measurable

“Growth is not merely a matter of the number of students”, emphasizes Sascha Spoun, the President of Leuphana University. Major indicators for qualitative growth of a university are research performance and the research topics chosen by the scientists and scholars. Research performance can be measured on the basis of, among other aspects, the number of scholarly publications and citations. According to the Web of Science index of international publications, the number of citations has increased six-fold since 2006.

Leuphana University of Lüneburg intends to enhance research performance also by appointing new professors who will contribute to Leuphana’ teaching and research profile with their expertise and ideas. It was only last summer semester that Prof. Dr. Axel Halfmeier was appointed to a lectureship in Civil Law, Prof. Dr. Paolo Mercorelli to a lectureship in Drives and Control Engineering, and Prof. Dr. Stephan Turbanski to a lectureship in Sports Sciences. At the beginning of this winter semester, Prof. Dr. Michael Ahlers started lecturing in Music Education; Prof. Dr. Sebastian Elischer was appointed as Junior Professor for Comparative Politics, and Prof. Dr. Jörg Philipp Terhechte assumed his duties as a Professor for Public Law, European and International Law, as well as Antitrust Law and Law of Regulation. After successful negotiations with Prof. Dr. Torben Schmidt (Didactics of the English Language), he will continue to lecture at Leuphana University. To strengthen the field of teaching, another two professorships will be financed through funds from the higher education pact: Prof. Dr. Tanja Thomas has assumed a professorship in Communication Science and Media Culture, and Prof. Dr. Dominik Schrage has been appointed as Professor for Cultural Sociology.

Central building project makes progress

After completion of the tendering procedure at European level, a bidding consortium from Lower Saxony has been awarded the biggest individual contract regarding the construction of the central building based on the design of Daniel Libeskind. The construction works totalling over 15 million euros started on July 12, 2012 and are expected to complete in fall 2013. Construction works and costs are fully in line with the agreed schedule. The new building is continuously rising from the building pit, which is about 5,500 square meters large and seven meters deep. The progress of the construction works can be followed by using a webcam available at www.leuphana.de/campus.