Katschhof and Aachen Cathedral
Event "playground" at Katschhof in summer
The pictures above should give you an idea of what to expect at RWTH Aachen. The are many reasons for doing an exchange in Aachen. Some of them are listed below.
1. RWTH Aachen is University of Excellence
RWTH Aachen is one of eleven German universities with the title "university of excellence". It was selected for its cutting-edge research as part of the Excellence Strategy of the German federal and state governments and will receive funding from 2019 to 2026. Its international networking is also outstanding and you can take profit from that. Read more about excellence.
2. Division Rich in Tradition
Since the foundation of the university in 1870, geosciences have been part of RWTH Aachen University, at that time still with a focus on mineralogy, mining and metallurgy. The "Bergbaugebäude" is one of the oldest institute buildings at RWTH.
Today Aachen is one of the leading locations for geosciences and geography in Germany. The department is characterized above all by its broad range of courses with a focus on applications and interdisciplinarity. Increasingly, geological and geographical issues are being linked with the topics of sustainable resource use, environment and climate change, and the range of courses offered is being adapted to currently relevant topics.
3. A Typical University City
Aachen has about 245,000 habitants, whereof according to the city about 58,000 are students from six different universities. Strolling through Aachen you will notice that clearly. Everywhere you meet young people on the street and there are a lot of nice cafés, pubs and bars. In comparison to other German cities, the costs for rent and life are still affordable. There are regular special offers and discounts for students in restaurants and bars. Another advantage is Aachen's compact size, which makes it easy to get around the city on foot, by bike or bus.
4. Unique Location
Due to its proximity to the Netherlands and Belgium, Aachen is a real city of Europe. The "Dreiländereck", where the three countries meet, is located just 6 km outside Aachen´s city center. You can take a nice hike up there. In the border region you can find influences of all three cultures and there are good connections by public transport for day trips, for example to Maastricht or Liège.
From Aachen you can also get to the Eifel National Park quite quickly and can, for example, swim at the Rursee, explore the Vennbahn cycle path or hike the Eifelsteig. The North Sea can be reached in less than three hours by car and the major European cities of Brussels, Antwerp, Cologne and Düsseldorf are all less than 150 km from Aachen. Those who want to combine their stay abroad with travel and not only get to know Germany will definitely find what they are looking for here.
5. Cultural Offer
Throughout the year you will find a great cultural offer in the city. In addition to smaller events such as concerts or theater performances, some major events attract numerous visitors from outside the city every year. These include, for example, the "Öcher Karneval" (festivities with costumes) in spring and the CHIO equestrian tournament in summer, for which Aachen is known worldwide since 1924. The "Öcher Bend" funfair also takes place twice a year, at Easter and in the summer. In September, the open-air cultural festival AachenSeptemberSpecial is held and offers many musical acts as well as culinary variety and a Ferris wheel. To end the year, the Aachen Christmas market is set up, which is considered one of the most beautiful in Germany and makes the old town shine brightly.
6. International Flair
In winter term 2019/20, RWTH Aachen counted 11,280 international student out of 137 different countries. The International Office regularly offers events to bring people of different cultures and origins together. The internationalization of our department is also promoted. In addition to Erasmus+ and global partnerships, we maintain international collaborations, for example, the Indo-German Centre for Sustainability (ICGS) or the German University of Technology in Oman (GUtech). Students get involved through international networks such as the SPE Student Chapter and SEG Student Chapter.
7. Many Additional Options
RWTH does not only offer excellent teaching at nine faculties. The enrollment also includes the access to university sports including activities at Rursee, free language courses and the university library as well as the libraries of the institutes. In all university buildings you can use the university Wi-Fi, for example while preparing for an exam in one of many study rooms. Another bonus is the semester ticket, which is included in the registration fee. This allows you to use all public transportation in North Rhine-Westphalia for free.