HAW Hamburg and the University of Shanghai for Science and Technology (USST) jointly founded the Shanghai-Hamburg College in 1998. Approximately 300 students in three Bachelor’s degree courses – Electrical Engineering, Mechanical Engineering and Foreign Trade/International Management – are taught by HAW Hamburg and USST instructors. The degree courses are bilingual (Chinese/German).
The college focuses on providing students with a practically oriented qualification as an engineer or business administrator. The knowledge and skills taught in the courses are intended to enable graduates to work independently and with a practical focus in companies with close links to Germany. For this reason, particular emphasis is placed on language training and the acquisition of cross-cultural skills.
New semester-abroad programme
The mandatory semester abroad at HAW Hamburg is a new addition to the Electrical Engineering degree course regulations. During their semester in Hamburg, students will complete five subject-specific modules. They will be welcomed and supported by volunteer students, so-called ‘buddies’, as they get settled in Germany. Among other things, the buddies will accompany them to the resident registration office, to open a German bank account, and on outings.
Project coordinator Xin Ahlers was also an international student
The coordinator of the semester-abroad programme is Xin Ahlers, who works in HAW Hamburg’s International Office. She studied German in Beijing. In the fifth and sixth semesters of her Bachelor’s degree she spent a year abroad in Göttingen, after which she decided to do her Master’s degree in Heidelberg. As a former visiting student from China she understands the difficulties foreign students encounter in Germany. ‘I want the students from Shanghai to feel at ease here, and I want to help them as much as possible to make this the case,’ she says. ‘I think it would be nice if, at the end of their semester here, they want to come back again.’
Excitement about spending a semester abroad at HAW Hamburg
In Shanghai, the students are currently preparing with the help of an online independent-learning portal, where they are learning about living in a student residence, sorting garbage and the healthcare system in Germany, among other things. The student representatives from the class, Jiyuan Gong and Yi Zheng, say they are looking forward to everyday life in Germany and to talking with different native speakers. ‘We haven’t been to Germany before, so we’re curious about whether it’s easy to talk to Germans. And how do original German dishes taste? And how are on-campus courses run in Germany?’ During their time in Hamburg, the two hope to get to know people from different countries and become familiar with German culture.
More information about Shanghai-Hamburg College:www.haw-hamburg.de/en/international/shanghai-hamburg-college/
Information about HAW Hamburg’s intercultural programmes:www.haw-hamburg.de/en/international/intercultural-programmes/