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The year in review

Spotlight on - 2013

Munich, 12/27/2013

Choosing memorable events for inclusion in a short review of 2014 at LMU means making tough choices. - For at such a large university, every day brings an item worthy of mention. But we’ve made our selection, and now turn the Spotlight on …

January
“Someone has got to make a start.” Federal President Joachim Gauck begins his White Rose Memorial Address with this quote from Sophie Scholl, and goes on to underline the enduring significance of the courage of the members of the White Rose who were put to death 70 years ago.

February
LMU introduces its first Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs), which are indeed open to all, and enable participants to learn in a global network with (virtual) classmates in diverse parts of the world – an innovative approach to education with the potential to change whole societies. By the end of September, some 200,000 people had registered to take one or more of LMU’s MOOCs. 

March
LMU researcher Erika von Mutius has devoted much of her career to studying the origins of asthma and allergies – with a view to preventing these illnesses altogether. For her insightful contributions to the field, she receives the Leibniz Prize 2013, awarded by the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG).

LMU once again figures as the top university in Germany in the Times Higher Education World Reputation Ranking, and takes second place among its peers in Continental Europe.

April
Bavarian Premier Horst Seehofer visits LMU, and delights his hosts with the news that: “Planning work for the Philologicum can begin.”

May
Professor Stephan Hartmann receives Germany‘s highest award for research, an Alexander von Humboldt Professorship. Hartmann is regarded as a leading light in the fields of formal epistemology and the theory of science.

The Bavarian State Collections in Botany and their herbaria look back on a 200-year history. The LMU Herbarium contains some 3 million dried plants, fungi and lichens. Many of the specimens were collected in the early part of the 19th century. 

June
LMU celebrates its birthday by recalling stellar achievements, and in his keynote lecture astrophysicist Professor Ralf Bender looks between and beyond the stars to “The Invisible Universe”.

Libraries have entered a new era, as users’ expectations are changing rapidly. The newly opened Medical Reading Room is a good example of a library that meets the needs of contemporary students – and is a delight to the eye.

LMU’s Deutschlandstipendium really takes off! In the Summer Semester 2013 no fewer than 374 students receive the stipend – an increase of almost 80% over the previous figure. 

July
LMU President Bernd Huber is elected to a further term in office by the University Council. One of his primary concerns will be to improve career prospects for young researchers.

Good news for snakes (and adders), geckos, tortoises and their ilk. The new Clinic for Reptiles and Tropical Fish is formally opened, offering outpatient care for about 100 scaly creatures, great and small.

August
Germany’s women’s hockey team takes the European title for the second time. LMU student Hannah Krüger is on the winning side. She now hopes to qualify as a biology and chemistry teacher. 

September
The Dark Energy Survey gets underway: The world’s most powerful digital camera begins a systematic search of the heavens for clues to the nature of the mysterious force. Members of the Excellence Cluster “Universe” at LMU are actively involved in the mission.

The University Medical Clinic on Ziemssenstrasse (popularly known as the Ziemssenklinik) celebrates the first 200 years of its existence. This is where the history of university medicine in Munich began, the core about which LMU’s Downtown Medical Campus grew. 

October
LMU breaks the 50,000 barrier. Over 50,000 students are on campus as the new term begins. Among the milling crowds are 8000 freshers.

The Children’s University at LMU reopens, after a 3-year absence, with a talk on dinosaurs – a lecture with guaranteed “light-bulb” effect.

The jury charged with selecting the design for a new building complex for the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine announces its decision: The plan submitted by Katharina Bizer takes the honors. In the medium-term, the Veterinary Faculty will be moved to a site near Oberschleissheim, while the Physics Faculty takes over the area by the English Garden. 

November
It had been silent for decades but, after undergoing a thorough restoration, the White Rose Organ in the Atrium of the Main Building rings out again. 

December
The global financial crisis severely damaged the world’s economy, and experts argue that plans for a more effective regulatory framework are often ill-conceived. In a new Research Focus at the Center for Advanced Studies (CAS), LMU researchers set out to develop guidelines for the sound regulation of commercial firms and financial markets in Europe.

LMU law student Anna Schaffelhuber is named Disabled Sportswoman of the Year, a distinction which will fire her determination to win Olympic gold in Sochi in 2014.

For the first time in its 60-year history, a woman assumes the post of Music Director of the University Choir. Verena Holzheu makes her debut at a Christmas concert which also features the Choir of the Catholic University of Cracow. 

 

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