Unique Features

picture of career paths at MHH, from school to professor


HBRS was founded in 2003 as the initial step to realize a continued structured training concept for young scientists at MHH. We call it "career boosting". Meanwhile all career steps have been taken care of and have been included in HBRS as well the MHH Deanery of Academic Career Development. Clinician Scientist programs were added in July 2014.  






What makes HBRS unique?   The ten most important points:


  • Programs and Internationality: Hannover Medical School is the only “medical faculty” in Germany which hosts such a large number of structured doctoral programs under the roof of one graduate school: six PhD programs, three associated Master programs, and StrucMed / KlinStrucMed / DigiStrucMed, unique programs for undergraduate medical students to perform a Dr.med. thesis. Currently, HBRS students come from more than 40 different countries!
  • Degrees: Hannover Medical School is the only free standing medical university in Germany. And it is among the few “medical faculties/universities” in Germany which are able to award PhD and Dr.rer.nat. (for life scientists only) degrees. A fast-track Master in the three HBRS-associated Master programs is possible.
  • Tradition: HBRS is one of the oldest graduate schools in Germany, being founded already in 2003. Our MD/PhD program “Molecular Medicine” is the first international PhD program in biomedicine/ life sciences in Germany (founded in 2000; accreditated by ZEvA in 2003), the second PhD program “Infection Biology” started also in 2003.
  • Innovation: We have invented the structured doctoral program for medical students (StrucMed) in 2005 as well as the "Voluntary Research Year" for pupils who have just finished their high school. Both are meanwhile taken as German-wide models. In 2015, the new KlinStrucMed started, supported first by the Else-Kröner Fresenius Foundation now mostly by other foundations. This is the first structured program in Germany, in which undergraduate medical students perform a doctoral thesis (Dr.med.) in the field of clinical studies combined with a sophisticated training program. Currently, we are expanding our training in the field of digitalization. The PhD program BIOMEDAS started in October 2020, a Master program in 2021, as well as from July 2021 medical students can participate in DigistrucMed.  
  • Experience: HBRS is often seen as a model for many graduate schools (“best practise”) and it was the most developed graduate school being supported in the German Excellence Initiative (BMBF, from 2006). We have long-standing experience in organizing structured doctoral programs!
  • Support: HBRS offers a unique package of support: orientation weeks; social (cultural events, excursions); counselling; housing; financing: travel to Hannover for interviews and beginning of study, stipends, short-time stays abroad; families: extra support for children (Kindergeld), babysitter, Wilhelm Hirte crip/ kindergarten. HBRS is highly family-oriented!
  • Selection: We were the first PhD programs in Germany to conduct personal interviews on site in India (China), in strong cooperation with the DAAD and DFG.
  • Partners: HBRS is not only the umbrella of structured doctoral programs at Hannover Medical School, but interacts with a number of partner institutes: the Leibniz University of Hannover, the University of Veterinary Medicine Hannover, the Helmholtz Institute for Infection Research Braunschweig, the TwinCore in Hannover, the Fraunhofer Institute for Toxicology and Experimental Medicine Hannover, the NIFE Hannover, the Friedrich Löffler Institute in Mariensee etc. HBRS also fosters cooperations with industry partners.
  • Integration: All programs in HBRS are interlinked and integrated into the four research foci “Infection and Immunology”, “Transplantation/ Tissue Engineering/ Stem Cell Biology”, "Biomedical Engineering and Implants" and "Oncology" of Hannover Medical School, and collaborative research centres like Excellence Clusters Hearing4all and RESIST, German Research Centers DZIF and DZL, SFBs (DFG), BMBF Centres or Networks of Competence, Clinical Research Groups (DFG).
  • Perspectives and Alumni: So far, the overall impact factors of all finalists were about an average cumulated value of 10 impact factor points for each student (mostly first-author papers)! Career perspectives are excellent.
    We have already established a huge Alumni network, stay in touch with people and publish an annual HBRS Alumni newsletter.  

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