Newsportal - Ruhr-Universität Bochum
“I can’t stress enough how important community is“
Dear members of Ruhr-Universität, dear students, dear lecturers,
Just like you, I feel trapped in an endless loop. I wake up every morning, and coronavirus is still there. For the third time in a row, I therefore welcome you at the start of the semester not in person in the packed Audimax at Ruhr-Universität, but only virtually.
Research-based learning is not only a guiding principle of academic education.
Rather than in the lecture hall, seminar room or lab, we will continue to meet in the digital space, at least for the time being. This doesn’t mean it’s impossible, but it is certainly more difficult to immerse yourselves in the academic community, which is all about learning other people’s arguments in a spirit of mutual respect, articulating your own positions and dealing with fundamentally different points of view, and also experiencing and expanding your own limits in critical discourse. Self-conducted experiments convince students of the power of scientific methodology and its fundamental limitations. Research-based learning is not only a guiding principle of academic education, but also an attitude that enables people to base their interaction on tolerance and an unprejudiced approach.
For all of us, this situation means sacrificing our social life and, especially for you as students, giving up all the things that are part of a student’s life. This includes not only face-to-face interactions in lectures and study groups or meeting up for lunch at the Mensa, but also all those things that make up the university experience: sports, culture, pub crawls and student parties.
For new employees, it means that onboarding often takes place while they’re working from home, without the much-needed direct contact with others – be they superiors or employees.
I can’t and don’t want to promise you anything that I ultimately have no influence on anyway, but I can hope that it will be possible to breathe life into the campus once again in the course of this semester. That the community will grow back again and that everyone – especially our new students from this and the last two semesters – will be able to experience the RUB spirit on campus.
It saddens me that many of you have met your fellow students only via Zoom or Moodle. As great as they are as teaching tools, they cannot replace community in action. I can’t stress enough how important community is. And to give you something to look forward to, we have put together some impressions to whet your appetite and build anticipation for what we hope will be a near future.
I look forward to it with all my heart!
You will see pictures of events that made up life on the Ruhr-Universität campus before the pandemic. These include the Summer Festival, the Academic Year Celebration, the official welcome of the first-semester students, sporting events and much more. I hope that these pictures will not only give you an impression of what was once possible, but also of what will soon be reality again.
Above all, I wish to meet you all in person very soon on the Ruhr-Universität campus. I look forward to it with all my heart!
Yours, Axel Schölmerich
First semester welcome in the Audimax in 2018© RUB, Kramer
In 2019, the Audimax was once again filled to capacity with new students.© RUB, Marquard
Flags, whistles, whispering bags: the student councils usually make a lot of noise after the official welcome to draw attention to themselves.© RUB, Marquard
Such images are created at Academic Year ceremonies, here the honored students of 2019.© RUB, Marquard
The members of the Rectorate then stand on stage as a group.© RUB, Kramer
Semester concerts are also held regularly in the Audimax.© Mareen Meyer
Oh yes, and of course the summer party ...© Michael Schwettmann
As is well known, the Campusfest does not exist without fireworks.© Michael Schwettmann
Of course, campus life also includes scenes like this.© RUB, Marquard
This is also part of campus life: Rector Axel Schölmerich personally welcomes athletes at an honor ceremony in fall 2019.© Michael Schwettmann
So many people were honored on this occasion.© Michael Schwettmann
We are all particularly looking forward to this: studying and teaching together side by side, preferably without a distance of one and a half metres.© RUB, Marquard
15 April 2021