Hans-Peter Wild Talent Scholarships Awarded for the First Time

Scholarship award ceremony: 13 students receive funding in the MINT subjects at Heidelberg University

The scholarships are a wonderful boost to young researchers. That was stressed by Bernhard Eitel, Rector of Heidelberg University, when presenting the Hans-Peter Wild Talent Scholarships that had been advertised for the first time for this winter semester. 13 students at Ruperto Carola can be glad of the funding. At a ceremony on 19 November 2021 the Rector jointly presented the certificates with the scholarship donor, entrepreneur Dr Hans-Peter Wild. The scholarship programme supports gifted, motivated young people who are enthusiastic about what are called the MINT subjects.

In his greeting, the Rector thanked Hans-Peter Wild for his extraordinary commitment. Dr Wild, who studied law at Heidelberg University, congratulated the scholarship winners. They had held their own over 133 fellow contestants. The entrepreneur prophesied them an outstanding future: "We need your mathematical and technological know-how in order to shape our future society." With the scholarship programme, Dr Wild wants to contribute to attracting highly gifted students - among the best of their year - to Heidelberg University.

Christine Selhuber-Unkel gave a short talk with typical insights into her career as a researcher. After graduating and earning her doctorate in Heidelberg she had changed to Heidelberg University three times, she said - this year now as professor at the newly founded Institute for Molecular Systems Engineering (IMSE). There she does research at the interface between biophysics and materials science. From the start she was fascinated by the interdisciplinary approach, she noted, which was an important reason for her decision to return to Heidelberg.

Following the certificate awards, the two scholarship holders Rebecca Hann (chemistry) and Eric Matthias Kern (computer engineering) took part in a conversation with the Rector about how they came across the scholarship programme, what they appreciate about Heidelberg and what plans they have for the future. Marlene Maager accompanied the event with musical offerings - first on the descant recorder then on the violin. The biochemistry student was also among the recipients of a scholarship.

All 13 scholarship holders - five women and eight men - began their bachelor or master’s course in a MINT subject in the 2021/2022 winter semester at Heidelberg University. The Hans-Peter Wild Talent Scholarship, worth 1,000 euros a month, is primarily based on achievement. Strong prospective students from Germany and abroad can apply if they intend to take a degree in mathematics, computer science, a natural science discipline or in a technical field at Ruperto Carola. The funding can be extended beyond the two semesters after a successful test of talent and performance. The purpose of the programme is to support scholarship holders ideally to the end of their degree, and it is initially planned to run for ten years.

The entrepreneur and alumnus Hans-Peter Wild is committed in many different ways as a close friend, advisor and generous donor to Ruperto Carola, including in the group of supporters of the Heidelberg Center for American Studies. In recognition of his many years of contributions to promoting research and teaching at Heidelberg University, the Senate made him an honorary senator in 1996. Dr Wild’s strong bonds with his alma mater are also shown in his commitment during the fundraising campaign ZUKUNFT STIFTEN that concluded in 2019. For example, he made financial resources available to attract outstanding researchers to Heidelberg University and also contributed three million euros towards financing the new building of the European Institute for Neuromorphic Computing.

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