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From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Helmut Schmidt University

Campus and main building
Established 1973
President Hans Christoph Zeidler
Faculty An unknown number of teachers in 4 faculties/departments
Students 2144
Location Hamburg, Germany Germany
Logo of the Helmut Schmidt University

The Helmut Schmidt University (originally known as the University of the German Federal Armed Forces Hamburg), located in Hamburg, Germany, is an educational establishment that was founded in the year 1973.[1] The university is exclusively for officers and officer candidates of the Bundeswehr (German Federal Armed Forces), hence its original name. However, despite the university's strict enforcement of this exclusiveness, civilian students can on rare occasion be allowed to enroll. Both habilitation and an academic degree are achievable at the Helmut Schmidt University.[2]




Chronology of establishment

  • June 11, 1970: the Federal Minister of Defense at the time, Helmut Schmidt (for whom the university was later named and who later would become chancellor of Germany) publishes a decree that a university be established for the purpose of schooling certain members of the German Federal Armed Forces.[3]
  • 17 May 1971: the decree passed a year earlier by Schmidt is appraised.[3]
  • 29 June 1972: the German Federal Armed Forces agrees to collaborate with Schmidt's ideas for the university.
  • 3 October 1972: the agreement is finalised and legally concluded.
  • 1 October 1973: the first classes of students begin schooling.
  • 30 September 1976: the first graduate leaves the university.


Helmut Schmidt University is located in Hamburg
Helmut Schmidt University
Helmut Schmidt University shown within Hamburg

Since the beginning of the university in 1973, there have been seven presidents of the institution, including the current president, Professor Hans Christoph Zeidler,[4] who has been in office since 2004.

Table of Presidents[5]
Name Beginning of Term of Office: End of Term of Office:
Prof. Ellwein 1974 1976
Prof. Wässerling 1977 1977
Prof. Sanmann 1977 1984
Prof. Homuth 1984 1991
Prof. Strunk 1991 1998
Prof. Gerstein 1998 2004
Prof. Zeidler 2004 present
Logo of the university before the renaming.


It was in the December 2003 that the University of the German Federal Armed Forces Hamburg was rechristened "Helmut Schmidt University / University of the German Federal Armed Forces Hamburg" to honour the man who passed the decree for the university's establishment and who was the brainchild for the idea of a university. Schmidt was present at the ceremony and was awarded an honorary degree.

Campus and faculties


There are four faculties at the Helmut Schmidt University: Electrical engineering, humanities/social sciences, mechanical engineering and economics/social sciences.[6] The size of the faculties relates to the ability to keep the learning groups small and enable scientific research to be carried out.

  • Electronic technology 13 professors
    • Parts industrial engineering
  • Mechanical engineering 7 institutes, 19 professors
    • Mechanical engineering
    • Computational Engineering Science
    • Parts industrial engineering
  • Humanities and social sciences 9 institutes, 27 professors
    • Educational sciences
    • History
  • Economic and social sciences 19 institutes, 40 Professors
1.) Industrial engineering (Wirtschaftsingenieurwesen/lit. economic engineering) cannot be designated to a particular faculty, even though electronic technology has taken the lead in teaching the subject.

Accommodation and Financing

The university is designed as a campus university, with rooms both on the university grounds at the Douamont barracks and at the Hanseatic barracks. Due to structural changes in military training, several external accommodation had to be acquired including the former Lettow-Vorbeck Barracks, which is now used by the Federal Police (Bundespolizei). The use of barracks accommodation is free for soldiers under 25, after which they are required to pay. Exceptions to this are those with private housing, called "home-sleepers"("'Heimschläfer'").

As the majority of students are military personnel, they are paid according to rank and service years.

While normal military posts have a military dining facility, the university does not. It has a Mensa, where the majority of students and teaching personnel can eat, as well as an officers club.

Conditions of enrollment

There are several conditions of enrollment which are strictly observed at the university. Any student that enrolls at the university is expected to serve at least 12 years, more commonly 13 years in the service of the German Federal Armed Forces. As university is part of the officer training program, the selection process considers not only the ability to partake in the academic training, but military aptitude in general. Even if selected, standard university access authorisation is required to school at the university.

Military aspects of student life

Prior to their studies, soldiers must train at one of the three respective Officer Training school: for the army in Dresden /('OSH'), for the air force in Fürtsenfeldbrcuk ('OSLw') and for the Navy in FLensburg ('MSM').

During their stay at the HSU, military personnel are required to complete certain standard procedures every year. These include:

  • 30 km marches
  • German Sports Badge
  • Physical Fitness Test
  • NBC Training
  • First Aid Training
  • Small Arms Training

On occasion:

  • political education
  • Training courses (such as MOUT etc.)
  • Military ceremonies (such as changing of Commandants etc.)

See also



Additional sources

External links

Coordinates: 53°34′04″N 10°06′26″E / 53.56778°N 10.10722°E / 53.56778; 10.10722


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