December 18, 2017
Internationality, diversity, high academic standard: If you ask Angolwisye Paul Mwakisu for three reasons why young people should study at Jacobs University, he does not have to think twice. The fact that the private, English-medium university is growing and that it has had a steady trend of increasing student numbers is also thanks to the 32-year-old. “Ango”, as he is called everywhere on campus, is one of six recruiters who get students worldwide excited to study at the university in Bremen.
Asia, South America and Europe: Jacobs University’s Admissions Team recruits new students on all continents and visits schools and trade fairs such as “Startschuss” and “Vocatium” in Germany. The regions that Ango focuses on are Canada and the USA. He goes there twice a year for around four weeks each. He was last there in September, on the east coast, traveling from Boston through to New York, Atlanta and Miami.
Approaching potential students, speaking to them and their parents, convincing them of the university’s offering in order to recruit the most talented students – that is customary in North America. “It is also quite normal even for well-known universities such as Harvard or the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT),” says Ango. What is not so normal for young Americans is the option of studying in Germany – in their home language at a university that is very similar to their own. “Most people aren’t aware of this option,” says Ango.
What many young Americans find fascinating about Jacobs University is in particular its internationality and cultural diversity. “At an American university, if 15 percent of the students come from abroad it is regarded as international. At our university it is 75 percent – that is very special,” reports Ango. Many US citizens also find the ability to reach many different countries from Bremen in one or two hours by plane appealing. It is unthinkable on their own continent. Add to this the high quality of the education and the fact that the study fees are not a deterrent – quite the contrary. Americans are used to paying for their university education. They see the 26,000 euros payable for a Bachelors degree per year, including accommodation and meals, at Jacobs University as cost-effective.
Only if you are excited about something is it possible to excite other people. As a recruiter for Jacobs University, Ango is also convincing because he knows what he’s talking about. “I want other people to also experience what I experienced. What the university offers is simply fantastic. It is possible to develop your personality here,” says the Werder Bremen fan who still occasionally laces up his soccer shoes to play as a defensive midfielder for Jacobs University’s soccer team and sings as a tenor for the J-Cappella choir. Born in Bochum, he moved to Dar es Salaam in Tanzania at the age of seven. There his predecessor fired him up to study at the international university. At first, he completed his Bachelors in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, which he followed with a Masters in Communications, Systems and Electronics. However, his work in the laboratory and at the computer appealed to him less and less and, via some detours, he landed up in the Admissions Team – and stayed.
Since 2011, he has been telling people about the study options at Jacobs University. “I simply love advising them and influencing their path in life,” says Ango. He meets some of them later as students on the campus and, at times, parents come up to him and thank him for his assistance. “That” says Ango “is a great feeling every time”.