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Bundestag PM Dr. Thorsten Rudolph (2. from the right) discussed opportunities and challenges of a private business school with WHU's Core Leadership Team. Photo: Volker Schmidt.
01/29/2024

Dr. Thorsten Rudolph Visits WHU

Bundestag PM in favor of easier visa issuance for international students

Dr. Thorsten Rudolph, Representative of the SPD in the German Parliament (Bundestag), came to WHU – Otto Beisheim School of Management to meet with the Core Leadership Team and discuss the challenges and opportunities awaiting the university within its electorate. In a discussion with Professor Christian Andres (Dean), Peter Christ (Head of Administration), Professor Christian Hagist (Associate Dean Undergraduate Programs), and Professor Nadine Kammerlander (Associate Dean DEI & Sustainability), Dr. Rudolph praised WHU for its ability to attract top talent from around the world and noted its status as one of the region’s landmarks.

The core message of their discussion, however, concerned the increasing degree of difficulty that international students face when applying for their visas. “This topic is one of upmost importance to a privately financed university,” said Dean Andres. “When compared with the public sector, our masters-level programs are much more dependent on students coming in from abroad.” According to Dr. Rudolph, the problem is known. And given how relevant this is to the domestic economy, much work is being done at the Federal Foreign Office to digitalize and accelerate the process.

The notably high degree of imbalance concerning the terms for assistant professors has also become a point of concern at the school. In certain cases, state-funded schools may appoint assistant professors for an extended period of time should they have reached the twelve-year limit of their academic qualification before and after earning their doctorate. Dr. Rudolph agreed to look closer at these circumstances at the Ministry for Science of Rhineland-Palatinate. Other topics during this meeting included the future direction of WHU’s locations in Vallendar and Düsseldorf, the continued development of the program portfolio, and the desired level of diversity of the school’s student body.

“Internationally recognized universities such as WHU play a decisive role in bringing top talent to Germany—and in retaining them after their studies for the German job market on a long-term basis,” summarized Dr. Rudolph. The school administration is looking forward to regular discussion with Dr. Rudolph in the future.

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