German Branch celebrates 10th Anniversary

At the end of April in Hamburg, the German Branch of the University of Wales Alumni Association celebrated their 10th anniversary.

German Branch Members

The Club, which now boasts over 220 members was originally founded to offer networking opportunities to University of Wales German Alumni, but has grown to represent a substantial academic resource both for MBA graduates of Allfinanz Akademie and German-speaking graduates who hold University of Wales’ awards. The Alumni Branch boasts a range of annual events including grant support for students and symposiums.

Dr Simon Jones, Senior Lecturer in Technology and Environment at the University of Wales Faculty, represented the University for the two-day event and here gives his account of the celebrations:

“This year’s event, hosted in a hotel overlooking the River Elbe and Airbus Factory (a further reminder of Welsh connections), comprised a series of academic papers presented to the Association, a celebration dinner at which I was invited to offer an after-dinner speech on behalf of the University, the Annual General Meeting, and a walking tour of Hamburg’s redeveloped waterfront area after lunch. 

Attendance at this year’s 10th Anniversary celebrations was approximately 50 people, many attending with partners and children, which only served to emphasise the supportive environment of alumni and the value in which the Association is held. While there were milestones to note, and celebrations to enjoy, the opportunity for networking and recognising informal business was not lost!

Dr Martina Nieswandt and Professor Lothar Streitferdt

Dr Martina Nieswandt and Professor Lothar Streitferdt

The symposia started with a significant celebration, with Dr Martina Nieswandt presented to the assembled Alumni Club members following the recent awarding of her PhD from University of Surrey. This is a considerable achievement, not only because developing an MBA thesis into a doctorate is an unusual academic achievement (and in a second language), but was also done while developing an independent Business Consultancy with her husband. The gathered Alumni Club members were also informed of the secret that it was Martina’s birthday; yet more reason to celebrate!

Having received papers by Prof Dr Friedrich Schade and Dr Roland Geschwill, families joined Alumni Club members for a drinks reception and dinner during which my speech was generously received. There was a great deal of discussion of the University of Wales’ current plans to merge and the branch’s long association with the University. The dinner was formally closed with a speech of thanks to assembled members by Prof. Lothar Streitferdt.

The following morning, and after the AGM, the Alumni Club were treated to an extensive walking tour of Hamburg’s redeveloped water quarter. On a beautiful Spring day, the city’s busy river front, plazas and historic warehouses looked spectacular, and provided a wonderfully informal end to the 10th Anniversary Celebrations.

I would like to extend my thanks to the German Branch of the Alumni Association for their generosity in enabling me to join in this significant celebration and I wish them every further success with the club into its next ten years!”

For more information on the German Branch, please visit their website – www.alumni-wales.de

Hamburgs Water Quarter
Hamburg's Water Quarter