The city of Bern is a political and an economic center in Switzerland. According to Mercier’s 2018 Quality of Living Survey, which is conducted annually in more than 450 cities, Bern is ranked 14th in the world. Bern is also ranked as the 2nd safest city in the world, and is also known for having an exceptional quality of education. Today, we shall have a look at the University of Bern.
The University of Bern (Universität Bern) is one of the oldest universities in Europe. Founded in 1528 as a small theological school in the heart of Switzerland, the government of Bern transformed the university into an academy with 4 faculties in 1805. Today, the University of Bern compromises of 8 different faculties: Theology; Law; Medicine; Veterinary Medicine; Business, Economics, and Social Studies; Humanities; Human Science; and Science. The university’s campus is spread throughout Bern in the academic part of the city known as the Länggasse area, and all of the buildings are conveniently located within walking distance. With a student body of about 17,000 students (about 2,000 international students), the University of Bern is the 3rd largest university in Switzerland, and is ranked in the top 200 universities in the world.
The University of Bern offers 43 Bachelor’s and 96 Master’s degree programs in a wide array of disciplines, as well as postgraduate courses that confer a Certificate, Diploma or Master of Advanced Studies upon completion. The university also has the Centre for University Continuing Education, which offers more than 50 courses of study, all of which are suitable for practicing professionals.
The university has 150 institutes and about 115 research centers and medical clinics. Not only is the university an international leader in certain research fields, but it prides itself on its strategic research centers: Fundamental Physics; Biomedical Engineering; Cognition, Learning, and Memory; Development & Environment; Space and Habitability; Climate Change; and World Trade. The University of Bern is also home to four of the National Centers of Competence in Research (NCCRs): Climate (climate change research), North-South (sustainable development), Trade Regulation (international trade), and TransCure (membrane biology). Apart from the areas of research that have been previously mentioned, the university actively participates in a wide range of European and international research projects, most notably in the fields of space research and dental medicine.
Throughout the academic year, the university offers training sessions and competitions in more than 90 sports disciplines. Students have an opportunity to join one of the numerous clubs or associations such as the Bern University Theater, the Jazz Orchestra of the University of Bern (Uni Big Band), or the University Choir; they can take part in one of interest groups or fraternities. The University of Bern has Erasmus agreements with over 240 universities, which explains one possible reason for why a lot of students from abroad study at this particular university.