Magdeburg: In the heart of Germany

Located in the heart of Germany, just 1 ½ hours from Berlin, Magdeburg is a university town situated on the river Elbe.

City profile

Magdeburg is the second-largest city in Saxony-Anhalt and its political capital. Historically, city is famous as the home and burial place of Otto I, the first emperor of the Holy Roman Empire. A beautiful city on the Elbe River, today Magdeburg’s economy tilts toward services and nearly around 20,000 students attending its two internationally oriented universities. The city is also home to an array of research centers and scores with its proximity to Berlin, Hamburg and Leipzig.

Overview of universities

Otto-von-Guericke University Magdeburg 

Founded in 1993, the Otto-von-Guericke University is one of the most modern institutions for higher learning in Germany. It was one of the first universities in Germany to switch from diploma to bachelor’s and master’s degree programs and now focuses on natural sciences and engineering, as well as social sciences, economics, management and medicine.

One of the school’s strengths is its interdisciplinary cooperation: A team of the university’s IT specialists and computer visualists is currently developing a virtual training system for Germany’s leading liver surgeons. Dubbed LiverSurgeryTrainers, the program allows surgeons to simulate difficult surgeries on a digital 3-D model of the actual patient. The doctors can thus carefully plan and simulate a surgery to increase the success rate of the real operation.

Magdeburg-Stendal University of Applied Sciences 
If you want to attend a truly international university, then the Magdeburg-Stendal University of Applied Sciences is your school of choice. The university nurtures contacts with over 100 universities worldwide, offers an international degree and has over 60 exchange programs. Moreover, it currently oversees and runs Germany’s largest education export project: the German-Jordanian University (GJU). Located in Jordan’s capital, Amman, the GJU mimics the concept of a German university of applied sciences, providing practice-oriented education to prepare its students for the working world.

Did you know?

The teen rock band Tokio Hotel, which took Europe by storm, was founded in 2001 in Magdeburg. Martin Luther lived in Magdeburg as a schoolboy and came back in 1524 to preach the ideals of the Protestant Reformation.

The euro is not the only currency in Magdeburg — you can also pay with the Urstromtaler, a currency issued at a rate of 1:1 against the euro. It may sound like a joke, but it’s a very real way to help local businesses.

Things to check out

The city center is lovely for anyone — but especially if you’re a fan of architecture: It’s lined with medieval churches (the most impressive being the Protestant Cathedral of Saints Catherine and Maurice, which at 104 meters is eastern Germany’s tallest church), several neo-classicist buildings from the Communist era, and modern-day buildings constructed in the late 1990s.

Useful links is Magdeburg’s largest independent student community webpage, where you can find answers to any and all questions that come to mind (in German only).

The home page of the Intercultural Students - Studentenwerk- of Magdeburg helps you with your start in town.

The city’s home page, with lots of useful information.