"Our goal is that you should follow your own path. Here at Geisenheim, the education you are receiving now will help you to face the challenges you will be confronted with in your respective fields after you have graduated," said Professor Otmar Löhnertz, Vice-president of Academic & Students Affairs at Hochschule Geisenheim University, as he welcomed 401 new Bachelor degree students at a ceremony held in the Rheingau Atrium last Monday. The President's Council, lecturers and representatives from the AStA Student Committee also extended a warm welcome to the new students.
Warm words of welcome were also given by Christian Assmann, the Mayor of Geisenheim and Andrea Engelmann, managing director of the Rheingau Winegrowers' Association. "Establish contacts and take avail of the opportunities the town and the region have to offer you", said Engelmann, who, having studied here herself, has maintained "close ties" to Hochschule Geisenheim University for over 20 years. Geisenheim is a family, graduates always leave the Rheingau with a very special attitude to life, she added. What it means to be a "Geisenheimer" was then impressively demonstated in a new video produced by VEG – Geisenheim Alumni Association e.V., featuring the paths chosen by three generations of past students and alumni since they left the university.
Freshers' Week: information, culture and a wine tour
Following the official welcome ceremony, which was interpreted into English for the international students, freshers had the opportunity to get more information on what is on offer onsite: the University Sport section, Frankfurt Student Union and the International Office introduced themselves. The freshers were then taken on a tour of the campus in the brilliant sunshine by older students. A small drinks reception hosted by the Student Committee at Villa Monrepos rounded off the afternoon's activities.
A separate information event was held on Tuesday when staff from Hochschule Geisenheim University staff gave a presentation on scholarships and funding opportunities, e.g. to finance studying abroad for the new students. To mark the 125th year of its existence, the VEG Geisenheim Alumni Association also gave a presentation. Thanks to an intergenerational agreement within the Association, students can avail of its services free of charge.
On Friday the freshers will have the chance to appreciate the beauty of the local Rheingau region: for the third year running, Kulturland Rheingau, in particular, Rheingau-Taunus Kultur und Tourismus GmbH, has organised a bus trip to the surrounding region for the new students, which will stop off at Schloss Johannisberg, Schloss Vollrads and Eberbach Monastry and include a guided tour, wine-tasting and a typical regional supper.