Graduate School News

"Teaching is, quite simply, a joy"

Dr. Andreas Paa was a 2014 graduate of the M.Eng. in Automotive Systems, majoring in Vehicle Dynamics. Now, the 40-year-old has completed his PhD and become a professor in eastern Westphalia

As long as he can remember, Andreas Paa has been thrilled by automotive engineering: as a young child, he often visited his father's engineering company and watched him at work. "I grew up with machines and technology," he recalls, so a career in a technical field was simply a natural progression. After school, he started off in industrial mechanics at Kärcher and then Stihl, and it was after this that he began his studies in Esslingen.

Andreas spent 10 years completing his studies in Esslingen; his bachelor's and master's degrees entirely at Esslingen University and then his PhD in cooperation with the Technical University Braunschweig. During his PhD, he was working as an assistant in Daimler AG's lab for Internal Combustion Engines. The highlight of his career so far was his appointment as a professor for Internal Combustion Engines and Mechatronics at the Technical University of Eastern Westphalia.

In February, Andreas is moving to Lemgo with his family. There, he will begin lecturing in the Faculty of Engineering and will teach his students, among other things, all about the workings of internal combustion engines. "Teaching is, quite simply, a joy," he says. Working together with young people and giving lectures is something, he noticed very early on, that he greatly enjoys. "I was so lucky to be able to work with so many interesting and motivated people at Esslingen University," he says. "And I was always able to work on innovative projects."


"I really enjoy being able to help shape the scientific research of the future," he says. "Research is cool. It always bothered me when things didn't work properly." In his new professional world, applied reseach plays a dominant role.

Is leaving his home in southern Germany difficult? "I will naturally miss my parents, friends and colleagues," Andreas admits. "But my family and I have already had a look at our new home: the people in Lemgo have a bit of the Swabian mentality!"

Please also see the full original article in German by Christiane Rathmann.

Junior Students take over Esslingen MBA Blog

The Esslingen MBA Student Blog 2020

The Esslingen MBA Blog started in 2016 as a student initiative by Husam Taha, Aparna Sukhavanam, Jorge Robles Saravia and Asad Ali. It began in the style of “Humans of New York”, as a series of interviews with MBA students and professors. Reading through the interviews, we get a wonderful insight into their life in Esslingen, their thoughts and experiences here and in the programme.

Each year, a group of junior MBA students takes over the blog, changing it and personalizing it to make it reflect their year. In 2017, Pengchao Ma carried on, expanding the interviews and showing the world his MBA class. In 2018, Likhith Reddy Asani and Pragadish Nandakumar took over the blog and moved it to an independent domain.

This year's blog is now in the hands of Avani Rathod, Büsra Yildiz, Aniket Shripad Kulkarni and Biswal Pallavi. They have decided to interview MBA seniors and alumni and get their view on the programme and their life and work afterwards. Their first interview, conducted by Avani Rathod with Denisse Cuba, MBA 2020, is already on line at

" favorite place is the side of the campus with huge stairs that leads to the entrance of main building. It’s beautiful with huge park and students can chill there."

- Denisse Cuba, MBA 2020, interviewed by Avani Rathod, MBA 2021

We are very impressed by the students who run this blog, and really enjoy this entirely student-controlled view of their world. Congratulations to all of our earlier bloggers and to our Junior Blog Team, this is a really creative and impressive initiative and we love it!

7th Graduate Colloquium

On 13 November 2019, the Graduate School held its 7th Graduate Colloquium

With the Graduate Colloquium, the Graduate School gives the university's doctoral and graduate students a platform for interdisciplinary exchange and the possibility to communicate and network.

The 7th Graduate Colloquium started off with a keynote lecture entitled "Sustainable engergy engineering and mobility at Hochschule Esslingen – what on earth are they doing?" by Prof. Dr. Ralf Wörner of the Faculty of Management.

The following doctoral presentations were held:

- By Laura Langenbucher from the Institut für nachhaltige Energietechnik und Mobilität (INEM): „Energieeffizienter Betrieb und ökonomische Bewertung einer solargespeisten Wasserstofferzeugungsanlage."

- By Di Hu, Institut für nachhaltige Energietechnik und Mobilität (INEM): “Simulation of autonomous driving shuttle bus in virtual environment.”

Many thanks to all who came together to make this another successful and valuable exchange.


2019 Incoming Student Video Competition!

Andres Corrales from Ecuador wins the 2019 Incoming Students' Video Competition!

Where do you come from and how do you live there? was the motto of this year's "Incoming Students' Video Competition"

Kudos to Andres Corrales from Ecuador for sending in this simply fabulous video of himself in his home city Quito for the 2019 Esslingen Graduate School Incomings Video Competition!

Bizet's Carmen: Our students experience a classical opera in Stuttgart

Heide's Deutschtreff in Stuttgart for Bizet's Carmen

Carmen, which was first performed in 1875 in Paris, shocked its original audiences with its realism and drama, which broke tradition with comical opera. Our students had a chance to experience this famous opera in a fun evening out with Heide's Deutschtreff. Not only was this a chance to enjoy the music and opera, however, but also to see the Stuttgart Opera House before its planned renovation and extension.

The shabby charm of this beautiful building is unquestionable. Built at the turn of the last century, originally as a theatre for the Württemberg court, the Stuttgart State Opera rising behind the small lake in the court gardens is an architectural jewel. Soon, the city plans to renovate and restore this lovely venue for a whopping 2 billion euros! We are looking forward to seeing what our future students report on the changes in the years to come!

Kareem Hamza, Esslingen MBA 2019, at CERN

Kareem Hamza, Esslingen MBA 2019, was one of over 100 students from around the world who applied to the 5-week CERN Entrepreneurship Student Programme in Geneva – and one of the 14 who was chosen.

The goal of the CERN Entrepreneurship Student Programme is for students to develop new concepts for the practical implementation of CERN’s technological research and development. Throughout the programme, students are assisted by CERN researchers and coaches. One example of a creative new idea arrived at in this programme is a new manner of filtering microplastics from drinking water using laser technology.

Prof. Dr. Michael Flad, Programme Director of the Esslingen MBA: “We are very pleased that an Esslingen student took part in the CERN programme. We are in close contact with the programme organisers in Geneva would like to continue the exchange between CERN and our Entrepreneurship Course in future years.”

Kareem Hamza was visibly impressed by his summer at CERN: “I highly recommend the CERN Entrepreneurship Student Programme to any student with a technical and business background. It was an experience that comes once in a life, and motivated me a lot. The five weeks were also full of fun and we could explore the beautiful city of Geneva, the Alps, and other interesting places in the area.“

Please also see Kareem's full report on his experience at CERN

Further information on the CERN Entrepreneurship Student Programme

Welcome new Graduate School students!

On 3 September, our new students arrived in the GS

80 graduate students from all around the globe have arrived in Esslingen to begin their new programmes. Sign-in was on 3 September, orchestrated by Head of Student Services Sara Pohl.

Vice Dean Dr. Michael Flad welcomed the new students to this province, which is one of Germany's strongest in export, most creative in patent registration, and naturally most famous for its auto industry.

The excursion programme was presented by Holgar Starzmann. This year, our students will be travelling to Lake Constance (Zeppelin museum and New Castle), Baden-Württemberg's beautiful capital Stuttgart (including the fabulous views from the Stuttgart television tower, incidentally built by Fritz Leonhart, a pioneer in prestressed concrete structures), Heidelberg, which speaks for itself, and many other beautiful destinations. 

Manoj Kumar Gokulakrishnan told students about Heide's Deutsch Treff, run by German volunteer Heide Elberth, who regularly meets up with groups of students and helps them learn more about the local language and culture.

A surprise was the presentation of the coveted ITK Student Award 2019 to senior ASM student Johannes Rau, who received this award for an excellent master's thesis. This is an outstanding honour, explained on the ITK website as "Passion, Perspective, Endeavour - the efforts of the individual must be rewarded. We would like to show our appreciation, not only towards our own employees, but also towards those who form tomorrow's innovation: students. For this reason, we have been awarding the ITK Student Award since 2012." Congratulations, Johannes!

Helping with the registration and with peer-to-peer support were senior students Hasan Rizvi, Manoj Kumar Gokulakrishnan, Nithin Kunjumon, Ömer Bingöl, Pragadish Munirathinam Nandakumar, Stefan Schlereth, Suhas Ranganath. Many thanks to you all!

The Esslingen GS in Discover Germany Magazine

"International. Intercultural. Innovative."

In July, Discover Germany contacted us about the possibility of writing about the Esslingen Graduate School. The results have been published and can be seen on line:

Celebrating 20 Years Esslingen Graduate School

23 May 2019: a great celebration with so many important faces from our past and present!

20 years of international master's programmes:
acquiring and educating specialists for Baden-Württemberg

20 years ago, 6 faculties of the Hochschule Esslingen got together to create  new, dynamic international master's programmes for students from around the world. The goal: to build bridges between this culture and theirs, to bring in expertise from around the world and further educate students for the industrial greats situated here and internationally. In the team creating these programmes were representatives from industry, politics, and the university, and together they formed the Esslingen Graduate School.

20 years later, we have graduated over 1300 international students. Many have stayed in Germany and begun a life here, some have come back to the Graduate School to teach, some have gone back to their home countries and are ambassadors there for Germany and our programmes.

We celebrated our past, our present and our future on 23 May, and so many important people celebrated with us: it was an evening of reminiscing and of looking forward to the next phase in graduate education in Esslingen.

We thank all our supporters, the many people who at various levels were responsible for building these programmes, and of course our alumni, who have remained in touch and kept a part of the Graduate School.

Please see our History of the Graduate School

and our Photo Gallery of the 20th Anniversary Celebrations .

Excellent Results in the CHE and Wirtschaftswoche Ranking

Graduate School parent faculties rated among the best in Germany

In the May 2019 ranking of the Centrum für Hochschulentwicklung (University Development Centre - CHE), Esslingen University was rated excellent in the areas of Mechanical Engineering, Mechatronics and Electrical Engineering, Chemical Engineering and Biotechnology. The CHE Ranking is a nation-wide assessment of students' experience of the programmes, teaching, equipment and research at their university.

In the May 2019 ranking of the Wirtschaftswoche magazine, Esslingen University's Mechanical Engineering Faculty was ranked in the German top 10. The university ranking in the Wirtschaftswoche magazine has been compiled by a national survey of approximately 650 Personnel Managers in small, middle and large Enterprises in Germany.

The M.Eng. in Automotive Systems (ASM) is largely based within the Faculty of Mechanical Engineering: the M.Eng. in Design and Development for Mechanical and Automotive Engineering (DDM) is largely based within the Faculty of Mechatronics: we are very proud that these faculties have been rated so highly not only by Personnel Managers nationwide, but also by university students and alumni.

The CHE university ranking can be seen at ZEIT online.

Please also see the full original article in German by Christiane Rathmann.

The Esslingen MBA once again an International Top 10!

In the 2019 rankings of the university placement portal Find MBA, the Esslingen MBA in International Industrial Management once again ranked amongst the top 10

The Esslingen Graduate School's MBA in International Industrial Management is once again featured as a top business school worldwide in the career placement area of Industrial Management. In the top 10 list of the MBA specialist and university placement portal Find MBA, there are few other European programmes: the University of St. Gallen in Switzerland and the ESADE Business School in Barcelona, Spain are the closest.

"The Esslingen MBA Team is delighted to receive this award, which is a good representation of the industry's demand for our MBA graduates" commented Dr. Flad, Vice Dean of the Graduate School and Academic Director of the Esslingen MBA.

For further information on this award, please see Find MBA – Top Business Schools for Industrial Management and Manufacturing 2019.

Co-Creation: The Esslingen MBA cooperates with AEB SE

Unleashing the creative energy of its customers: AEB SE, a Stuttgart-based software company, is encouraging people to create better products together with the firm.

This kind of creative collaboration is what defines co-creation, bringing new wind into the innovation process of new products and services. Co-creation facilitates meaningful outcomes by integrating design, inquiry and local knowledge.

During the summer term 2019, Esslingen MBA students take this next step in entrepreneurial thinking in Prof. Flad’s lecture “Entrepreneurship”. MBA students work in groups to complete the challenges posed by this project, using Design Thinking and Lean Startup-Methods not only to develop but also to test a sustainable eCommerce business model for and with AEB SE.

“This project is almost predestined for the Esslingen MBA students because it calls for the main strengths of the program: business competence and engineering know-how paired with internationality. Putting their theoretical knowledge to practical use, MBA students will create and complete a business analysis for AEB’s eCommerce business in Asia”, says Prof. Flad, who is also the Programme Director of the Esslingen MBA in International Industrial Management.

AEB’s cloud-based software for global trade and logistics also makes a positive contribution to society: the supply chain gets leaner and greener, more secure and equitable. Moreover, AEB allocates part of its annual profits to the AEB Foundation to promote education projects for disadvantaged children.

Data Science @ Esslingen MBA

Prof. Dr. Flad welcomed Dr. Florian Rahe (Daimler AG) as a guest speaker in his course “Corporate Finance”

Since the success of Facebook and Google in the area of data and analytics, data science has become an important tool for many companies, and one that can be applied to various fields.

In this lecture, Dr. Rahe gave an overview of important data science applications in corporate finance, for example in sales forecasting or credit ratings. He also introduced popular data science techniques such as neural networks.

Students learned how data science can be used to support decisions, make processes more efficient and save costs in companies.

The Lighthouse Project - 3 Years and Running!

Community spirit is strong in the Esslingen Graduate School. The Lighthouse Project, where Graduate School students visit senior citizens living in a Seniors’ Centre in Esslingen Kennenburg, is now in its third year.

We are proud to have students who, in addition to 18 months of intensive study, found it important to contribute to the community they lived in. When passing on the project to the next generation of students, Lighthouse founding members said how grateful they were for the many beautiful hours that they spent with the senior citizens in the Seniors’ Centre. 

The students share stories and pictures of their home countries with centre residents, they sing songs and organise games. Residents are clearly delighted to receive so much additional attentional, and enjoy the talks and the informal get-togethers with our young students. For most of the residents, this kind of activity is seldom: the fresh breeze blowing from India, Japan, Bolivia or Canada bewitches smiles into their faces.

Yasuhito Nakazawa, an MBA student in the Graduate School, talks about his experience in the Lighthouse Project.

Read the latest article on the Lighthouse Project on the website of the Senior's Center.

Article in the Esslinger Zeitung from 01.09.2016: The Lighthouse Project Shines Brightly out into the World

Short course on „Management of IoT, CPS and CPPS“ at Taiwan Tech in Taipeh

The School of Management of the National Taiwan University of Science and Technology (NTUST), one of our partner universities, invited Graduate School professor Dr. Siegfried Zuern to lecture in May 2018

During his compact seminar, which was aimed at master’s and PhD students of engineering and industrial management, Dr. Zuern discussed the varied challenges that the digitalisation of operative management brings. Together, the participants created a matrix of mutually influencing aspects that have to be considered for the strategic planning and introduction of digital processes (industry 4.0). The students subsequently had to work out which management techniques are necessary to direct this kind of transition. A specially modified version of the “act.if® Company 4.0“ interactive case study game was used. This gamification version is based on an international, interdisciplinary scenario and was developed for the Esslingen MBA. It owes much of its development to the competence and experience of the Esslingen Graduate School with its international and interdisciplinary programmes (ASM, DDM, MBA).

The compact seminar was rounded off with a glimpse at the future of  the social effects of digitalisation. The students, who were not only from Asia but from Africa, South America and Europe, entered into a lively discussion on the chances and risks that result from the increasing digitalization of business and society for developing countries.

Apply for winter semester 2020/21!

M.Eng. applications open until 31 March
MBA applications open until 31 May

Apply now
Petra Gülck
Dipl.-Soz.arb. und -Soz.päd. Petra Gülck
+49 711 397-4461

Monday and Tuesday 08:30 - 11:30 a.m.

Tuesday and Thursday 1:00 - 3:00 p.m.