Silvia Brambilla Receives DAAD Prize

Silvia Brambilla from Italy receives the DAAD Prize worth EUR 1,000 that is conferred to an international degree-seeking student from the University of Mannheim each year. By awarding the prize, the International Office honors the excellent academic achievements and the volunteer work of the student.

Silvia Brambilla spent her school days in Italy and decided to do her bachelor's degree in her home country. The German language was present throughout this whole time, as she learned German at her school in Milan for five years. “In school I was most interested in German art and literature,” she says.

During her bachelor's degree in Economics and Management, Brambilla completed a semester abroad at Universität Regensburg. When the 23-year old returned to Italy, she had come to the decision that she wanted to do her master's degree in Germany. After this decision things happened very quickly: Only six months later, she packed her bags and traveled to Germany to study in Mannheim. She decided to do the Mannheim Master in Management due to its excellent position in Europe-wide university rankings. Two years later, she is still happy about her decision. She especially enjoyed the flexible course structure and the international focus of the degree program. “I have friends from all over the world,” Brambilla says enthusiastically.

During her studies, she also worked as a student assistant at the Mannheim Business School and completed internships at Fraport and RB in Heidelberg. Furthermore, she volunteered in the student organization MaXperience of the University of Mannheim and supported the organization at the annual TEDxUniMannheim event. At this event, artists, researchers or entrepreneurs are invited to introduce the participants in short talks to new topics and to inspire them. She also founded and developed the MMM International Workshops with some of her fellow students –  a Buddy program for the Mannheim Master in Management with orientation events to help international students to a smooth start when studying in Mannheim.

Apart from her excellent academic achievements, this volunteer work inspired the jury to award the prize to Brambilla.  Angela Dörflinger from the International Office explains the decision as follows: “She greatly helped to integrate international students at the University of Mannheim and strengthened the open arms culture.” Brambilla recently finished her master's thesis and heard the good news during an internship. “Receiving this prize is the perfect ending to my studies in Germany,” she says. After her studies, Brambilla would like to gain more work experience in Italy. The Italian has not made further plans for the future yet and she would even consider returning to Germany: “If I should go out into the world again, I will definitely come back to Germany.”

Text: Tina Ratajczyk / August 2020