Paderborn: Slam dunks and microchips

Whoever said Catholic cities can’t be progressive? The city of nearby 150,000 souls enjoys a reputation as a hotbed for computer sciences and IT.

City profile

The history of Paderborn revolves around two prominent figures: The city’s patron, 4th century Catholic Saint Liborius, whose relics have been interred at the town Cathedral since 836 — and the city’s most famous son, computer pioneer Heinz Nixdorf, whose machines revolutionized the German IT industry, while bringing employment and prosperity to the region. 

A vibrant town, Paderborn is also a focal point for American sports with a championship-winning baseball team, the Paderborn Untouchables, a successful American football team, the Paderborn Dolphins, as well as the Digibu Baskets.

Overview of the universities

Paderborn University

The university has its eyes set firmly on the future: In 2006, Paderborn’s Computer Sciences program was ranked among the top three programs nationwide in the academic excellence ranking of German universities by the Center for Higher Education Development (CHE) and DIE ZEIT newspaper. The English/American Studies department is top-of-the-line in North Rhine-Westphalia, while the History Department’s Institute for Medieval Studies enjoys a reputation for its professor position in UNESCO World Heritage. In 2003, the university launched a Chinese-German Technical Faculty together with local authorities in Qingdao, China.

Catholic Technical College North Rhine-Westphalia in Paderborn (KFH NW Paderborn)

The Catholic Technical College North Rhine-Westphalia, also called the University of Applied Sciences, (KFH) has students enrolled at locations in Aachen, Cologne and Muenster. Options include Bachelor degrees in Social Work, Child-oriented Education and Upbringing, as well as Religious Educational Sciences. The College also offers a Masters degree course in Social Management. 

The KFH’s department for Social Work achieved solid midfield scores in the CHE university ranking. Standouts include a strong integration into work life, especially in the Masters degree course for Social Management, with strong ties to local employers.

Did you know?

Paderborn is not only the cradle of Germany’s fast-moving computer industry, but on the slower end of the spectrum, also the birthplace of Morphine. In 1805, a young pharmacist’s apprentice by the name of Friedrich Wilhelm Adam Sertürner succeeded in isolating morphine as an alkaloid from the opium poppy.

Things to Check Out

The German Tractor and Model-Scale Automobile Museum has a collection of over 100 tractors by iconic German manufacturers such as Lanz, Hanomag, Deutz, MAN.

Paderbornians cherish their rich tradition of theater. Every summer, the famous stage assembly of the Kammerspiele theater takes it to the open air, with an annual Summer Theater Festival at the former Dalheim monastery south of town.

Useful Links

STUDYLife helps find apartments and jobs, connections to other students and lets you share experiences on academic courses and exchange trips. (German language site)

Check out the official website of the town of Paderborn.

The official Paderborn Student Union website keeps you abreast on housing, food, and other campus activities. (German language site) and help new arrivals find apartments to rent and share (both German language only):