'Founding a new university means embracing a new idea and a new goal. Our aim is to shape this university into an instrument of a true European spirit – a place where professors from different nations and students speaking different languages come together.'
This founding spirit – expressed in 1948 by the first rector of Saarland University, Jean Barriol – is still very much in evidence at Saarland University today. Internationality has always been a defining feature of the University and it is an integral part of day-to-day life on campus, where people from different countries meet and interact and where academic study, teaching and research have a strong international component.
The University's international outlook is evident in:
- the wide range of international degree programmes offered (29 in total, 20 of which lead to either a double-degree or a triple-degree qualification)
- the large number of international students (around 20%, the average in Germany is about 13%)
- the many international cooperative programmes (with 240 universities in 28 countries)
- the substantial levels of European external funding (around €40 million from the 7th Framework Programme alone)
- its core strategic area 'Europe' that provides an interdisciplinary platform for addressing European issues in both research and teaching
- the ideal preparation that our graduates receive for careers in the international job market
- its attractiveness to foreign scholars, scientists and academics
- the opportunities for cross-border study and research offered by the University of the Greater Region – a network of universities in which Saarland University plays a key role.