Community

WHU Students Show Local Commitment

Student clubs resume their work at the start of the term and respond with new projects under corona conditions.

The beginning of the new term for Bachelor and Master students at WHU - Otto Beisheim School of Management in Vallendar does not go unnoticed for long. In the university town on the Rhine, things are getting livelier and louder again. Due to the canceled official introductory week and social get-togethers, students are looking for alternatives to get to know their new fellow students and their new home-of-choice. All this would be a minor problem if a pandemic did not occupy the world at every turn.

"The new normality created by the Corona crisis demands understanding, cohesion, and rethinking from society. Especially in a place as manageable as Vallendar, it is important to show consideration for one another," emphasizes Professor Dr. Markus Rudolf, Dean of WHU. It is precisely this kind of rethinking that has also taken place among the students, who are reacting to the Corona pandemic in their work in the more than 30 student clubs, showing that social commitment is necessary and possible, especially in times of crisis. "As WHU Dean, I am delighted that many of our students are taking up the challenges posed by the crisis and making a positive contribution to Vallendar," Rudolf adds.

Rhine CleanUp in Vallendar

The student clubs SensAbility - The WHU Impact Summit and WHU Studenten Helfen e.V. (WHUSH), which focus their commitment on sustainable business and social responsibility, called on the WHU community on September 12, 2020, to participate in the annual nationwide Rhine CleanUp campaign. As the strongest group on-site, the approximately 40 volunteering WHU students and members - equipped with cloth face masks, gloves, and garbage bags - went in small groups to the island of Niederwerth to clear the Rhine of garbage and create awareness of how to deal with waste. "For us at SensAbility and WHUSH, it is an important concern to make a contribution to the protection of nature and to become active for Vallendar as a community. Also, we were able to make personal contact with the citizens of Vallendar and strengthen the community in the town," explains Philipp Gerber, Bachelor student and co-organizer of the conference of the same name "SensAbility - The WHU Impact Summit.

First blood donation day under corona conditions

The WHU First Responder, who are greatly appreciated by the citizens of Vallendar for their rapid response to medical emergencies and accidents, organize a blood donation day for students and residents in Vallendar several times a year. The first blood donation day under Corona conditions was also a success. "Despite the strict safety requirements of the business school and the authorities, we were able to guarantee a smooth process and convince around 70 WHU students, WHU employees and citizens of Vallendar to join us in our efforts to save lives by donating blood," summarizes Paula Labus from the WHU First Responders. Especially in times like these, when many blood donation days have to be canceled, this is a special achievement of which WHU and the whole of Vallendar can be proud, said the Bachelor student.

"Instrument Heroes"

With the new cooperation "Instrument Heroes", the student club WHU Studenten Helfen e.V. (WHUSH) is pursuing the goal of enabling refugees and socially disadvantaged children and young people to immerse themselves in the world of music and fulfill the dream of learning to play an instrument themselves. Members of the WHU community can register as music educators and pass on their talent in singing, guitar, piano, or similar. Other WHUSH activities include recurring benefit concerts, a refugee support project in which WHU volunteers playfully help children of refugee families to learn German, as well as application training for graduates of local schools, and cultural events together with citizens of Vallendar.

None of these projects would be possible without the excellent cooperation with local partner companies in catering, hotel business, and event technology, and many more, says Catharina Janz, Master's student, and representative of the student clubs. "Nobel prize winners, successful founders, DAX board members, and sustainability pioneers - they all come to the small town of Vallendar to share their knowledge. This fact makes this place very special!"

Learn more about WHU’s commitment in Vallendar