Uni­ver­sity So­ci­ety Young Tal­ent Awards for Out­stand­ing Theses and In­ter­na­tion­al Stu­dents

"We celebrate the future" - In keeping with the motto of UPB's 50th anniversary, successful graduates and students were honoured at the opening ceremony of the anniversary year in the Audimax in mid-March. On behalf of the University Society, Chairman Dr. Andreas Siebe presented congratulations and certificates to three young academics with outstanding achievements. Prizes of 1,300 euros each were awarded to Dorian Rudolph, who joined the ceremony live from the USA, in the category "Engineering and Natural Sciences" and Edina Kampmann in the category "Humanities and Social Sciences including Economics". The prize of 500 euros for international students went to ĐỖ THẢO NHI from the Faculty of Cultural Studies for her academic achievements and social commitment. In an online interview, we talked to the award winners about their work, their studies and their future paths in life.

Edina Kampmann: "Ziganist fantasies in Cervantes, Hugo and Mérimée".

Edina Kampmann studied Romance Studies and Fashion Textile Design in a two-subject Bachelor's degree at UPB. She then completed a Master's degree in Comparative Literature and Cultural Studies, which she successfully completed last year. Already during her Bachelor's studies, she was awarded the Molino-Winkler Scholarship and the Dr. Käthe-Sander-Wietfeld-Förderpeis of the Paderborn Art Association and the Paderborn University.

In her Master's thesis, described as "outstanding" by the laudator, she takes up the topic of "Gypsies" as projection figures of complex fantasies of fear and desire and their challenges for literary and cultural studies. In doing so, she supports the discussion and visualisation of social fears and desires in relation to a group of people and sharpens the critical eye for the fact that narratives believed to have been forgotten can flare up again at any time in socially challenging times. "It was this socio-political context of literature in particular that excited me when I was writing my thesis," Kampmann emphasises. After her studies, she will remain loyal to UPB. "Starting in April, I will take up a position as a research assistant in Comparative Literature," says the award winner happily. "I will further elaborate on the questions of my Master's thesis and carry them out in my doctoral dissertation."

Dorian Rudolph: "On the power of P with access to a QMA oracle".

Dorian Rudolph began his bachelor's degree in computer science at UPB around seven years ago. He completed this in 2018 and began his master's studies the same year. Now he has impressed his supervising professor and the experts with the results of his master's thesis. As part of the thesis, he is investigating numerous problems in quantum informatics: "In a nutshell, I'm essentially dealing with quantum complexity theory - in other words, the question: how do certain types of quantum computers work?"

Dorian Rudolph's findings are surprising: For example, he has made the first advance on a paper by a previous scientist from 1995. Moreover, the results have since been recognised at international computer science conferences. At the time of our interview, the award winner had just returned from the USA, where he was able to present parts of his thesis to experts. "It is an indescribable feeling to be rewarded so much for my work and at the same time to advance the state of science," Rudolph reports enthusiastically, also with a view to his intended doctorate in Paderborn computer science in the field of quantum informatics.

ĐỖ THẢO NHI: Award for special commitment of international students

From 2014 to 2018, the Vietnamese studied English Language Teaching at Hue University in Vietnam before deciding to study the English-language Master's programme English and American Cultural and Literary Studies in Paderborn after a stay abroad in Thailand. "Paderborn is very dynamic for me, but also peaceful at the same time," ĐỖ THẢO NHI describes her impression. "It was exciting for me to get to know a culture that is so different from my home culture." From the very beginning, she achieved outstanding results and received numerous awards such as "Merit of Excellent Student" as well as "Merit of Prominent Research" from Hue University even before her stay in Paderborn. For almost two years, the international student has been accompanying the survey lecture "Survey in English and American Literatures" in literary studies and has attracted particular attention with her great knowledge and commitment. She also helps other students with questions and has settled in well in Paderborn despite the difficult conditions. The young woman herself describes her work as a tutor as "the best thing about her studies" in Paderborn. "I have been able to learn a lot from the German students, as they have enriched my experience as a teacher. I really enjoyed working with them."