Image 1: ©  das design plus | Sabine Schmidt
Image 2: ©  das design plus | Sabine Schmidt
Image 3: ©  das design plus | Sabine Schmidt

Honor where honor is due

Every year, the best graduates of RWTH Aachen University receive special awards for their excellent exam results.

Every year, the Rector of RWTH Aachen University awards the Borchers Medallion to those graduates who have completed their doctorate with “summa cum laude”. Together with the proRWTH support association, the award is presented as part of the annual RWTH graduation festival (since 2006 as a badge of honor).

Historical background: Privy Councilor Professor Dr. Dr.-Ing. E.h. Wilhelm Borchers, professor of metal metallurgy at RWTH Aachen University from October 1, 1897 until his death on January 6, 1925. The founding of the new “Institute for Metallurgy and Electrometallurgy” goes back to him in 1902. The laboratory was the first distinctly metallurgical research institute in Germany. In the years 1904 – 1909 Borchers headed the university as rector.

The Borchers Foundation was founded at the university on July 1, 1909. A medallion of honor – the Borchers Medallion – was created to honor his personal research achievements and contributions to RWTH Aachen University.

With the Springorum Medal, the support association of RWTH Aachen honors the graduates who have passed their main diploma examination, master’s examination, master’s examination, teaching qualification examination or the state examination with honors. This medal is handed over to the best 10% of a year from each faculty (by a internal faculty selection process). proRWTH and RWTH Aachen University present the award every year as part of the RWTH graduation festival. Since 2006, the Springorum Medal has been awarded in the form of a badge of honor.

Historical background: Commercial Councilor Dr.-Ing. E.h. Friedrich Springorum, Dortmund, was a co-founder of the “Society of Friends of the Aachen University” (FAHo) – now proRWTH e.V. He led it as chairman from its founding on August 3, 1918 until 1925. As an expression of gratitude for his successful work for the society and our university, of which he was one of the earliest students, the society’s general meeting decided on August 8, 1925 to donate the Springorum Medal. It is also called a memorial coin.

The medal, created by Professor Bagdon, Dortmund, is awarded at the request of the faculties by the RWTH Aachen University to students who have passed their diploma, magister or master’s examination with honor.

On the front of the bronze medal you can see the head of Dr. Springorum. The inscription is: FRIEDRICH SPRINGORUM A FRIEND AND SUPPORTER OF THE TECHNICAL UNIVERSITY OF AACHEN.

If you have any questions about the selection process, please contact the Department 3.0 at RWTH Aachen University:

Other awards in connection with proRWTH e.V.:

On the occasion of the 90th anniversary of the Pirlet engineering office in 1999, the company Pirlet & Partner mbH and Dipl.-Ing. Alexander Pirlet donated the Josef Pirlet Prize and the Eugen Pirlet Prize for students studying civil engineering at RWTH Aachen University. The prizes were awarded for the first time in 2000.

The Josef Pirlet Prize is awarded in the form of a scholarship to students with good or very good academic achievements in their bachelor’s degree in order to support them during their study abroad. The prize is endowed with € 3,000 each (scholarship provider: Ingenieurgesellschaft Pirlet & Partner mbH, Cologne).

The Eugen Pirlet Prize is awarded for an excellent diploma thesis, master’s thesis or doctorate in the field of structural engineering. The prize money is € 2,000 (scholarship provider: Dipl.-Ing Alexander Pirlet, testing engineer for structural engineering, Cologne).

Mr. Dipl.‐Ing. Burkhard Walter and the Faculty of Civil Engineering at RWTH Aachen Universityaward  in cooperation with proRWTH the Holzbau (Timber Construction) Prize, which honors excellent final theses in the field of structural timber construction. The prize is endowed with a total of € 3,500. It was awarded for the first time in 2020.

To the founder of the prize

Mr. Dipl.‐Ing. Burkhard Walter is the founder and managing owner of B. Walter Ingenieurgesellschaft mbH with offices in Aachen and Duisburg. Mr. Walter completed his studies in civil engineering at RWTH Aachen University in 1982 and founded his company in 1984. He is an expert for timber construction, a member of numerous specialist committees and a multiple winner of the timber construction award from the states of North Rhine-Westphalia and Rhineland-Palatinate. His office is one of the most renowned addresses for timber construction and has a number of demanding and successfully completed projects.

Further information about the timber construction award can be found on the website of the Faculty of Civil Engineering.

proRWTH e.V. and RWTH Aachen University also manage foundations and funds from which annual prizes and awards are given to outstanding graduates:

Every year, the Ferdinand Schmetz Prize honors excellent theoretical and practical work in the field of gliding, especially dynamic gliding. proRWTH awards the prize ( € 1,500) at the annual congress of the German Aerospace Society (DGLR). This prize money is donated from the “Klemperer-Schmetz Memorial Fund” founded in 1974.

With the Schöneborn Prize, proRWTH annually honors excellent achievements in the bachelor’s exam at the Faculty of Mathematics, Computer Science and Natural Sciences (Biology, Chemistry, Physics) at RWTH Aachen University.

The prize is based on an inheritance from mathematics Professor Dr. Heinz Schöneborn, who taught at RWTH Aachen University from 1964 to 1987. He was an enthusiastic member of our association proRWTH e.V. Even during his lifetime, he was very committed to his students and young scientists. With his inheritance he made this award possible, which has been awarded since 2004.

Prizes awarded by our members and donors in the past:

The Viktor and Mirka Pollak Prize honors outstanding theses in electrical engineering and information technology completed at RWTH Aachen University with a medical-technical scope.

The prize is financed by the Viktor Mirka Pollak Fund for Medical Technology, which is dedicated to promoting interdisciplinary medical technology research. The fund was founded in 2004 by Ms. Mirka Pollak. It honors the heritage of her husband Viktor Pollak, who did pioneering work in the field of biomedical engineering at the University of Saskatchewan in Saskatoon, Canada, from 1968 until shortly before his death in 1999. The fund is managed by proRWTH, the support association of RWTH Aachen University.

The prize was offered annually since 2005. For 2016 it is endowed with €1,000.

The winners were selected by a board that includes the dean of the Faculty of Electrical Engineering and Information Technology at RWTH Aachen University and three medical technology specialists from this faculty.

The F.C. Trapp Prize is awarded to engineers who have paid particular attention to practical orientation during their studies..

After 21 years, the prize was awarded for the last time in 2013. At this point we would like to thank F.C. Trapp very much for his high commitment.