Pure woman power

Kite Mentoring celebrated 10th anniversary

From 12-13 October 2023, Kite-mentoring celebrated its 10th anniversary with a grandiose event at IMBIT on the Faculty of Engineering campus. A total of 130 people from 8 countries participated in both days. The mentors had traveled from Hamburg, Berlin and Bonn, among other places, especially for this event. The anniversary event was coupled with an international conference of "eument-net", the European network of mentoring programs in academia and research.

Many thanks to Colette Schrodi from the European Science Foundation Strasbourg, who moderated the event, and to the two keynote speakers, who spoke about gender equality and mentoring in academia:

Prof. Dr. Tomas Brage (Lund University, Sweden): "Gender bias in academia - a threat to academic values".

Prof. Dr. Marieke van den Brink (Radboud University Nijmegen, Netherlands): "Mentoring in higher education - supporting career development and organizational change".

It has become a tradition that relevant industry partners are also invited to the Kite-mentoring annual network meeting. At the anniversary event, representatives from Stryker, Pfizer, SICK, iOMedico, inomed and Boston Consulting Group were present and were able to network directly - like at a career fair - with the highly qualified women from the kite-mentoring program.

The anniversary day ended with pure female power: The group Akaishi daiko Freiburg played on Japanese Taiko drums and the robot Spot danced to these rhythms.

"It was my idea to end the evening with a furious performance, it should be drumming women symbolizing women power," said Dr. Evelyn Rusdea, kite-mentoring coordinator, "and that's how the idea came up with this group. Kite-mentoring is anchored in the Robotics department, so it was obvious that Spot, our 'fanciest robot' (as I call him) should perform on the music. We got the license from the manufacturing company for one month and the two PhD students (mentees in kite mentoring) have set up choreography to the music tracks. IN this way something unique was created, a promotional gag for kite-mentoring, the Robot Learning Lab, IMBIT/BrainLinks-Brain Tools and the University of Freiburg."

Link to video: Dancing Spot with the amazing Japanese Akaishi Daiko drummers https://youtu.be/LXnOC4EXCcE?si=ycNXavl3UQxuY2eq

About kite-mentoring

kite-mentoring is a career support program for women at the University of Freiburg and is aimed at female doctoral students and postdocs in the life sciences and engineering. The program started in 2013 as an initiative of the Cluster of Excellence BrainLinks-BrainTools and developed so successfully that it is now supported by several institutions and programs at the University of Freiburg.


Dr. Evelyn Rusdea
Coordinator career development program
Tel.: 0761/203-67660
Georges Köhler Allee 80
79110 Freiburg

Kerstin Steiger-Merx
Representative PR/Marketing
Faculty of Engineering
University of Freiburg
Tel.: 0761/203-8056
E-Mail: steiger-merx@tf.uni-freiburg.de