Aarhus attracts international IT talents

Last week, the Department of Computer Science invited 13 European top-students from countries such as Czech Republic, Portugal, Romania and Germany. All of them are interested in doing their Master’s degree in Computer Science abroad, and Aarhus is one of their top choices. The visit is sponsored by the department of computer science and Destination AARhus – a network of 13 large companies in Greater Aarhus that all recognize and experience the great lack of IT specialists.

The Department of Computer Science at Aarhus University has a special interest in attracting international students to get the student population to match the international diversity of the research staff. However, the department realizes that they compete with many other universities about these top-students. Thus, for the second time the department arranged a visit for potential international students. During the visit, the students get a thorough introduction to the department, the curriculum and Aarhus University, they get to experience the city, and to meet with the starving local IT industry.

“When we saw the impact the visit made on our visitors last year, we were not in doubt that we would like to repeat this in order to show these promising young people that Aarhus is a vibrant city and on the forefront of research within computer science. We are very happy that the local IT industry once again will support this visit”, says one of the organizers Søren Poulsen from Department of Computer Science.

Why Aarhus?

There are two main drivers for why the international students has chosen to apply for Aarhus University. First is recommendations from friends and supervisors who praises Aarhus as a city but also the department as a top-location for studying computer science. Ilona Benko from Croatia explains; “I am very interested in studying cryptography, and my mentor recommend me to apply to Aarhus University as some of the best researchers within this field works here”. Second, many of the students checked university rankings and found Aarhus University that way.

The IT industry supports the visit

It is no secret that there generally is a high demand for highly skilled labor in the Danish IT industry, which happily supported and sponsored the visit. “As a representative of the industry, I think it is very important to support the work that the department of Computer Science put into attracting international IT students. We have experienced an increased lack of IT competences across the companies in Destination AARhus. These international students are possible new employees, and therefore I think it is important to tell the students about the IT industry in Greater Aarhus”, says Mogens Qvist Frandsen, Chief HR Business Partner for CIO and Head of Digital Transformation at Grundfos.

During the visit, the international students met with Danske bank, Terma, Kamstrup, Grundfos, Salling Group and Systematic – all part of the Destination AARhus network – to learn more about the opportunities for internationals in Aarhus. Patrick Lewandowski and Max Scheid from Germany were very surprised about this enthusiasm the companies showed for potentially new employees, which they are not used to. One of the other visitors even used the visit to set up a job interview. “My only concern before coming to Aarhus was whether I would be able to find a student job. Now I already have an interview with Danske Bank, and can see that there are many different opportunities. I am very excited to come to Denmark”, says Mia Simunic from Croatia.

The students still have a few days before they have to decide where in the world they want to do their Master’s in computer science. We hope many of them will return to Aarhus in August.

 

FACTS

In 2018, the department of Computer Science had a great increase in international applications. Of out 90 European applicants, 25 students were offered acceptance and received an invitation to visit the department. Due to exams, many were unable to attend, but 13 accepted to visit. The visit had two full-days schedule with focus on student life and career opportunities in Aarhus. The visit is sponsored by the Department of Computer Science, Aarhus University and Destination AARhus. For more information about the visit, check out cs.au.dk/visit2018