"With almost 9,000 students, Hochschule Bremen is not only one of the largest universities of applied sciences in Germany – with its broad range of subjects it is also an important part of Bremen's scientific landscape," said Science Senator Dr Claudia Schilling in her welcoming address. "And it is also an open university that offers new target groups entry to university studies. What pleases me especially as Senator for Science is that Hochschule Bremen, with its new courses of study, particularly in the sectors of social work, nursing, and health, acts as a driver of innovation for the entire region and contributes to increasing the attractiveness of these occupational fields and to meeting the demand for skilled personnel. This puts Bremen among the leading pioneers nationwide."
"Prof Dr Karin Luckey has shaped a whole era at Hochschule Bremen and has played a major role in making HSB what it is today: a place of lifelong learning. During her term as President of HSB, flexibility in studies and educational equity were important objectives. Karin Luckey never shies away from difficulties or unforeseen changes, but always tries to find a way – with a never-ending stream of new ideas for the further development of the university. What I particularly appreciated about her as President was her clear stance."
There was also a great deal of appreciation from the business community on the evening: HSB is a reliable partner for Bremen's companies and the region. What is more, it ensures the training of specialists and is thus an important player in the fight against the present crisis of skills shortages. Dr Matthias Fonger, Managing Director of the Chamber of Commerce for Bremen and Bremerhaven said: "We would like to thank Prof Dr Karin Luckey for her outstanding commitment to Hochschule Bremen and to our whole science location. Under her leadership, HSB has impressively internationalised its profile, promoted innovation and in many areas resolutely exploited the opportunities made possible by a close and trusting exchange of ideas between science and the business community. As a result, Hochschule Bremen has become a valuable resource of skilled professionals for companies in Bremen and Bremerhaven."
HSB also plays an important role in the nursing and health care sector. In recent years, the state and Hochschule Bremen have taken a pioneering role nationwide in the academisation of these professions. For example, the university has created new practice-oriented degree programmes in obstetrics, nursing, and therapeutic sciences as well as in the field of palliative care. Such graduates are urgently needed in times of skills shortages. One guest at the ceremony who played a decisive role here in politics at state and federal level was the then Senator for Health and Science in Bremen, Prof Dr Eva Quante-Brandt. "The advancement of academisation in the areas of health and care was a central focus for HSB – especially for the popular degree programmes in the field of social work," she said. "During her 15 years in office, Karin Luckey always had the strengthening of Bremen as a science location in mind. She has always been reliable, solution-oriented, but also demanding. With her heart and soul, she works together with the members of HSB to advance the transfer of science into society," said Eva Quante-Brandt appreciatively. Bremen as a science location has benefited greatly from this.
What is the importance of universities of applied sciences for Bremen, both at national and international levels? Prof Dr Ute von Lojewski, long-time president of Münster University of Applied Sciences, said during the ceremony: "With our application-oriented approach in teaching and research, universities of applied sciences make an important contribution to solving the many challenges facing business and society. Thanks to our transfer orientation, we educate our students in close cooperation with practice and serve an important bridging function between research and concrete application. Karin Luckey stands firmly behind these ideas: in her own university, but also far beyond through her important work in many fields of university policy."
Hochschule Bremen (HSB) has around 370 partner universities worldwide. The cooperation with Hanze University Groningen (Hanze UAS) is its longest standing and among its most important. Ever since the 1970s, the two universities have been implementing joint programmes and projects in teaching and student studies, research, and at management level. This partnership was strengthened a few years ago with the founding of a networked joint European university. In the European university alliance called STARS European University – STARS EU for short – Hanze University Groningen is the lead and HSB is a founding member. "For the Hanze University of Applied Sciences Groningen, the cooperation with the HSB has a high priority," said President Prof Dr Dick Pouwels during the event in the Town Hall. "Also, of course, because it was our very first international cooperation, which has now lasted almost half a century. Of great importance is the next step established in this long collaboration: the cooperation between Hanze, HSB and seven other European universities in the STARS EU Alliance. Such a big step forward in European cooperation was only possible because we have been successfully working together over the past 50 years. Big steps call for courageous leadership. Prof Dr Karin Luckey has shown that leadership is embedded in a good personal relationship."
"The 15 years at HSB have been most gratifying and very enriching for me personally," sais Prof Dr Karin Luckey. "For me, Hochschule Bremen is a `wow' university: every day of my tenure I have been constantly impressed by what our staff and students are capable of achieving. For this I thank all members of the university from the bottom of my heart. My thanks also go to the politicians and all our partners in industry and society for the good cooperation and support. My personal wish would be for all of you to remain loyal to HSB – to continue to support and promote the university – because everything you invest in HSB you get back several times over. Hochschule Bremen is a university for the common good: it creates added value for our society in all manner of thematic areas."
The festive event was moderated by Radio Bremen presenter Felix Krömer. The HSB University Choir IntoNation provided musical accompaniment to the evening under the direction of Julio Fernandez. Also present as special guest were pupils from the "ThinkMusic!" choir project from the Gerhard-Rohlfs-Oberschule in Bremen. The HSB choir has supported the project for many years, with professional musicians singing with the children in class and performing in public.