“A Role Model for all Women in Science”

It is an award for an extraordinary woman: The master’s student Sanaz Sadat Afzali from the University of Bremen received this year’s DAAD Prize for outstanding achievements of international students studying at German universities. The prize is endowed with 1,000 euros.

Sanaz Sadat Afzali entirely reflects the profile of this award,” states the Vice President International and Diversity at the University of Bremen, Professor Eva-Maria Feichtner, appreciatively. “We wish to honor her dedication and drive with this prize.” The 27-year-old has done a great deal in her discipline, culturally, and in society. “She is an asset to our university, our city, and our country,” says the vice president. Moreover, the student is not only a role model for women in science but rather for everyone.

“She Impressed Me from the Beginning”

Sanaz Sadaz Afzali is currently in the fifth semester of her Communication and Information Technology (MSc) degree at the University of Bremen. She has already completed all courses. The Iranian national is now working on her master’s thesis. “I was able to experience her in several theoretical and practical classes. She impressed me from the beginning with her drive and extreme interest in the discipline,” says her professor Anna Förster. “When I asked her if she wanted to incorporate her research topic from her work as a student assistant into her master’s thesis, she answered: ‘I’ve already learnt that, I want to do something new’.” The 27-year-old doesn’t keep what she has already achieved and learnt to herself: She offers private tutoring in math and music and also helps other students on her degree course.

Successful Student in Iran

Sanaz Sadat Afzali already performed outstandingly during her earlier studies at Isfahan University of Technology in Iran. She completed her bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering and computer engineering there. “One must not forget that as a woman in a patriarchal country, it was surely not always easy for her and that she needed a great deal of willpower and resilience,” says Anna Förster.

Special Musical Talent

The young woman has a particular talent for music. She is a member of the university orchestra and choir and regularly performs. Her self-composed songs are usually in Persian. “That is how she shares a little piece of her home with us and contributes to there being more intercultural understanding,” according to Professor Anna Förster. With her musical dedication, Sanaz Sadat Afzali is helping to empower other students as well as teaching staff to grow and learn something new that has nothing to do with their field of study. “In an impressive way, she shows what a person can be become and how much strength we have in us,” states Förster.

Sanaz Sadat Afzali is pleased to receive the DAAD Prize: “This award shows me that I can go my own way everywhere in the world. It gives me hope that I can fulfill my dream to be a person that changes the world.”

The DAAD Prize

The Vice President International and Diversity, Professor Eva-Maria Feichtner, and the International Office present the DAAD Prize shortly before Christmas each year. According to the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD), the prize money of 1,000 euros per university is to help to give an identity to the large numbers of international students at German universities and to connect them to their stories. This shows that each individual international student takes a piece of Germany back to their home country and leaves a piece of themselves in Germany. It is an enrichment for both sides. The students who receive the prize from their host university represent their peers across the world. They are Germany’s future partners in the economy, politics, and science.

Further Information:


Claudia Pellegrino
International Office
University of Bremen
Phone: +49 421 218-60365
Email: claudia.pellegrinoprotect me ?!vw.uni-bremenprotect me ?!.de

Administrative Unit for University Communication and Marketing
University of Bremen
Phone: +49 421 218 60168
Email: meike.mossigprotect me ?!uni-bremenprotect me ?!.de

Portrait of a young woman in front of black background
The Iranian Sanaz Sadat Afzali is pleased about the DAAD Prize: “This award shows me that I can go my own way everywhere in the world.”