BIGSSS Graduation: 36 graduates celebrated their PhD completion


The Bremen International Graduate School of Social Sciences (BIGSSS) celebrated its Graduation Day on April 13. In a festive ceremony at the ‘Goldener Saal’ in Bremen’s famous Böttcherstraße 36 graduates from four continents were honored for the completion of their PhDs. They successfully completed their studies at BIGSSS, a graduate school funded by the Excellence Inititative of the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research and jointly run by the University of Bremen and Jacobs University.

April 16, 2012

For the first time, BIGSSS graduates from both Jacobs and the University of Bremen were honored at this year’s ceremony.

BIGSSS integrates excellent areas of graduate education and research at both universities into a synergetic inter-university institution.

The graduation is not the only proof for „BIGSSS Success“. A rapidly growing international network of successful alumni carries the BIGSSS name into the world.

They now work as professors and scientists in Shanghai und Seoul, at the London School of Economics, the Social Science Research Center Berlin, the European Commission in Brussels, the German Science Council or at the Goethe-Institut in Sarajewo.

Luicy Pedroza Espinoza, for example, is currently a researcher at the Central European University in Budapest. She completed her doctorate at BIGSSS on the subject of the extension of voting rights to resident migrants in democracies. ”My research is still very close to my heart, which actually says it all,” she says. “BIGSSS has given me the academic freedom to create and develop a research project that I feel emotionally tied to. I had tremendous support in both professional and interpersonal matters.”

„We are proud of our graduates,” says Professor Susanne K. Schmidt, Dean of BIGSSS. “This is a special day for our PhD students as well as professors, employees, and family members who have accompanied the PhD projects over the course of years.”

BIGSSS is funded by the Excellence Initiative of the German federal and state governments and has a graduation rate of over 90 percent. The Graduate School can be proud of 57 alumni, who work successfully not only as professors and scientists, but also in non-academic positions in Germany and abroad. The proportion of women graduates has been constantly exceeding 50 percent.

More than 85 percent of this year’s BIGSSS applicants are from abroad, thus the Graduate School continues to profit from the cultural diversity of its fellows. BIGSSS not only provides all doctoral students with three-year scholarships, but also offers an excellent infrastructure and international cooperation with well-known institutions.

The students can count on support for research trips, conference visits and publications. Over the years the graduate school has established a unique research culture aiming at full participation. Against this backdrop, everyone at BIGSSS is now hoping to receive further funding by the Excellence Initiative in June 2012.

More information: www.bigsss-bremen.de
For enquiries please contact Werner Dressel
Tel: +49 421 218-66400
E-mail: wdressel@bigsss.uni-bremen.de