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From Bonn to San Marino: Where do Bonn students actually come from?

From Bonn to San Marino : Where do Bonn students actually come from?

Here are some statistics: Bonn students come from 148 other countries besides Germany. Almost twice as many come from Luxembourg as from Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania - and 243 Berliners are also among them.

The corona crisis has left only minor traces in the student body of the University of Bonn. This is shown by a glance at the statistics, which were updated on 1 December for the current winter semester. According to these statistics, 38,330 young people are currently enrolled in Bonn. 5,399 of them do not have a German passport. A year ago there were a total of 38,884 students, 5,541 of whom were from abroad. "The figures are largely stable," says university spokesperson Dr. Andreas Archut.

If you take a closer look at the figures, Bonn is well positioned internationally with guests from 148 countries. Their share last winter semester was 13.7 percent, which is slightly above the national average of all 426 German universities, including the 106 universities. This was 13 percent.

Nevertheless, the Rheinische Friedrich-Wilhelms-Universität has regional roots. 13,706 students come from within a radius of around 30 kilometres. Young people from Bonn are particularly keen to stay in their home town after graduating from high school. 5,008 students at Bonn University also previously lived in the city. In addition, there are 3,927 from the Rhein-Sieg district, 2,848 the neighbouring city of Cologne and 1,288 from the Rhein-Erft district. 635 students come from the district of Ahrweiler.

Bonn University is a university for NRW: Two thirds of the students come from the federal state

Bonn University is clearly a university for students from NRW. Here, it recruits a total of 24,967 students or almost two thirds (65.1 percent). By contrast, only 3,041 students (7.9 percent) come from neighbouring Rhineland-Palatinate. All other federal states follow at a distance, led by Baden-Württemberg with 1,141 students, Lower Saxony with 981 and Bavaria with 908.

243 young Berliners escape the hype surrounding the federal capital and prefer to study on the romantic Rhine rather than there. Very few students are sent to Bonn by Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania rather than Bremen or Saarland. Only 86 students come from Rostock, Stralsund and Co.

China plays an absolutely special role among the students from abroad - regardless of whether they came to the country to study or have lived in Germany before. The 680 young men and women from the People's Republic make up 12.6 percent of this group. They are followed by 349 Indian men and women. However, within a year, they have displaced Turkey, the former recruitment country, to third place with 315 people.

The proportion of EU students among foreigners is just less than a third (29.1 percent last winter semester). This is by no means based on the size of the population of the Länder. Obviously, personal contacts, or concrete exchange programmes, play a decisive role. The small Grand Duchy of Luxembourg, for example, with 143 students, is almost three times as strongly represented as the similarly close Netherlands with 45. 65 French students are also few, given the close economic ties between the two countries. From January 2021, the university will hardly be affected by Brexit. Only 43 young British students are studying in Bonn.

It is noticeable how attractive the University of Bonn appears to be in some smaller countries - compared to heavyweights like the USA. While only 108 students come from there, only 20 from Canada, 70 come from Colombia and 51 from Ghana. Even the island paradise of Mauritius is represented by eleven people. And the dwarf state of San Marino has a man or woman in Bonn. As a result of the refugee crisis, Syria is now also quite strongly represented with 160 nationals.

Women are also the majority of foreign students

Speaking of men and women, at least in terms of numbers, there are significantly more women among the students from abroad. In last year's evaluation, women accounted for 7.5 percent of a total of 13.7 percent of foreign students and only 6.2 percent were men.

And what do they study in Bonn? Mainly economics – with 305 foreign students. Then comes medicine with a total of 282 enrolled, with women dominating, closely followed by computer sciences - a total of 281, with men dominating. Physics and Asian Studies follow in second place with 267 and 261 students respectively. Despite clusters of excellence and international orientation, the mathematics programmes only have 230 students from abroad.

Overall, studying in Bonn is of particular interest to students from abroad, especially before taking a Master's degree. 39.4 percent of them were aiming for this degree last winter semester. 27.2 percent were only in their Bachelor's programme. 12.2 percent wanted a state examination, which only makes sense if they have prospects of remaining in Germany in their later professional lives. 18.5 percent had come to Bonn as doctoral students within the scope of their doctorate.

(Original text: Martin Wein, Translation: Mareike Graepel)