Advantages for students

In addition to an excellent choice of universities and degree programmes, anyone who decides to study in Kiel will have many other advantages.

Here you can get information about the welcome payment, the university sport on offer and much more.


Welcome payment

Students are welcome in Kiel! All those who move to Kiel for their studies can apply for a welcome payment from the city.

This applies to all new residents who are enrolled at Kiel University (CAU), Kiel University of Applied Sciences (FH Kiel), Muthesius University of Fine Arts and Design or the Dual University of Applied Sciences (DHSH).

The one-off payment amounts to €100. To qualify, you must be registered with primary residence or sole residence in Kiel for at least one year. You submit your application for the welcome payment in person when registering in the City of Kiel.

Detailed information on the welcome payment is available at the Zuständigkeitsfinder at 

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University sport

Fit for everyday student life: Sport is a key part of university life in Kiel. The comprehensive programme is open to all students in Kiel, as well as other university members, and provides a healthy balance to learning and working. Many sporting activities are also open to the public in Kiel.

Sailing training at Kiel University

All kinds of sports – from A for aqua jogging right through to Z for Zumba – are part of the programme in the sports forum at Kiel University (CAU). The sports forum also has a swimming pool, and the FiZ fitness centre offers a wide range of fitness equipment as well as group courses and coordination training. Water sports play an important role in Kiel. In addition to the Rowing Centre, the university's own Sailing Centre in Kiel Schilksee is a particular showpiece. The programme ranges from sailing lessons for beginners in dinghies to sailing cruises on our own yachts.

Kiel University of Applied Sciences (FH Kiel) offers sailing, kite-surfing and surfing during summer semesters. Its sports programme, which includes ball sports, self-defence, dance and health courses, uses various sports venues on the Ostufer (east bank).

 - öffnet eine vergrößerte Ansicht
 - öffnet eine vergrößerte Ansicht
 - öffnet eine vergrößerte Ansicht


Varying daily meals, with and without meat – five canteens (known in German as a Mensa) at the Kiel universities serve fresh special offers every day.

The university gastronomy run by the Studentenwerk Schleswig-Holstein (student union) uses only top quality ingredients, and tailors its product range according to the students' wishes.

The canteen teams operate sustainably. The menu is based on fair-trade coffee, tea and cocoa, products from the region and meat from animals that are kept ethically, partly from organic farming. 

Each canteen has its own atmosphere, from the smallest in Schleswig-Holstein at the Muthesius University of Fine Arts and Design campus, to the biggest at Kiel University (CAU). Outside of lunchtime, those wanting a coffee break will find a cosy spot in one of the cafeterias and café lounges of the canteens.

Source: CAU |  YouTube



The three most important scientific libraries in Schleswig-Holstein are in Kiel: Kiel University Library, the Landesbibliothek Schleswig-Holstein (Schleswig-Holstein’s State Library) and the German National Library of Economics (Deutsche Zentralbibliothek für Wirtschaftswissenschaften, ZBW).

In addition, the other universities and research institutes also make literature available for research, teaching and studying.

Photo: Jürgen Haacks / Uni Kiel

Literature for all subject areas: Kiel University Library

The University Library at Kiel University (CAU) is the biggest library in Schleswig-Holstein. It was founded in 1665 together with the university, and today incorporates a central library and numerous additional specialised libraries.

Notable works housed include medieval manuscripts and prints from the former Bordesholm Monastery, as well as the Specialised Information Service (FID) for Northern Europe, which succeeded the special subject collection "History, Languages and Literature of the Nordic Countries" in 2016.

To the University Library at Kiel CAU

Photo: Jürgen Haacks / Uni Kiel

Preserves the knowledge about Schleswig-Holstein: the Landesbibliothek (State Library)

Those looking for information about the past and present of the state between the seas will find it here. The Schleswig-Holsteinische Landesbibliothek (State Library) is a special library for Schleswig-Holstein history and regional studies. In the Sartori Speicher it also houses audio material and images, in addition to handwritten and printed literature, as well as the state historical collection and rooms for special exhibitions.

The Schleswig-Holsteinische Landesbibliothek also has an online database; titles published during the period from 1928 to 1986 are available digitally via open acces from Wachholtz Verlag, as are the 13 volumes of the biographical lexicon for Schleswig-Holstein and Lübeck.

To the Schleswig-Holsteinische Landesbibliothek (German)

Photo: Schleswig-Holsteinische Landesbibliothek

750 years of city history in the Stadtarchiv Kiel (city archives)

Kiel has stored its most important documents in the city archives in the Kieler Rathausturm (City Hall tower) since its founding. In addition to documents and official papers, it contains Kiel literature, maps and plans, as well as extensive photographic material. Interested parties can view the archive material on site. There is also a photo archive on the internet.

To the Stadtarchiv (German)

Historisches Dokument
Foto: Landeshauptstadt Kiel / Marco Knopp

The whole world of economics: the ZBW

The German National Library of Economics (ZBW) provides everything that the experts require. The biggest library in the world for economics literature relies on digitalisation and modern communication methods for rapid knowledge transfer. The German Library Association (dbv) honoured the ZBW for its innovative and customer-orientated approach with the "Library of the Year 2014" award.

To the german National Library of Economics (ZBW)

Foto: Landeshauptstadt Kiel (Science Unit)

Kiel Scholarships

Each year, the City of Kiel awards full scholarships to foreign students from partner cities.

Great emphasis is placed on promoting new talents in Kiel. The City of Kiel has been awarding Kiel Scholarships since 1954. They are aimed at talented students from Kiel’s international partner cities. Today, these are Aarhus, Antakya, Brest, Cherson, Coventry, Gdynia, Kaliningrad, Moshi Rural, Samsun, San Francisco, Sovetsk, Tallinn and Vaasa. Kiel provides a total of six scholarships, each for a maximum ten-month study period. 

The City of Kiel impresses with its excellent research, maritime flair and its wonderful seaside location. Kiel is a fresh, growing, family-friendly and well laid out city. In addition to studying, there are plenty of sport, culture or nature opportunities for leisure activities. If you are interested in outstanding research and a diverse life on campus, then apply for a scholarship in Kiel. You can do so through your home university.

Kiel awards scholarships to students from partner cities
Fact Sheet

The City of Kiel offers scholarships to gifted students from its partner cities Aarhus, Antakya / Hatay, Brest, Cherson, Coventry, Gdynia, Kaliningrad, Moshi Rural, Samsun, San Francisco, Sovetsk, Stralsund, Tallinn and Vaasa with the intention of strengthening the friendships between the cities.

A total of six scholarships are available for a maximum of ten months of study at Kiel University (CAU), Kiel University of Applied Sciences (FH Kiel) and the Muthesius University of Fine Arts and Design.

Six scholarships are offered each year for a maximum period of ten months at € 934 per month:

  • Four scholarships for study at Kiel University (CAU)
  • One scholarship for study at Kiel University of Applied Sciences (FH Kiel)
  • One scholarship for study at the Muthesius University of Fine Arts and Design

The prospective applicant must be enrolled at a university in one of Kiel’s partner cities. The funding is available for students from the 3rd semester upwards.

Required language proficiency:

  • at least level B1 language proficiency for German language degree programmes
  • at least level B2 language proficiency for English language degree programmes

The applicant’s financial need must be confirmed by their home university. Dual funding, e.g. with another scholarship, is not permitted.

The maximum scholarship period is from 1 October to 31 July of the following year. Extensions are not possible.

The scholarship amount is based on rates set by the German Academic Exchange Service (Deutscher Akademischer Austauschdienst (DAAD). This must be used independently to cover livings costs, semester fees and health insurance contributions. A place at a student hall of residence can be reserved by request. The scholarship recipients pay for travel costs themselves.

Applications are to be submitted to the home university’s Rector’s Office; the relevant forms are available at the home university’s International Office.

The documents include:

  • two expert assessments (in English or German)
  • the required certificate of language proficiency
  • justification for the study project in Kiel, which is to include a priority research area of one of Kiel’s universities or a reference to the City of Kiel in terms of its content
  • a passport photo
  • and a confirmation from the home university about the financial need. Dual funding, e.g. with another scholarship, is not permitted.

A selection of the three best student applications from each partner city will then be submitted to the International Centers of Kiel’s universities. The universities, together with a representative from the City of Kiel and a representative of the student community, will then choose their scholarship recipients.

If you are interested in first class research, a diverse life on campus, and you would like to get to know Germany’s state between the seas, then apply for a scholarship in Kiel.


Please contact your responsible International Center at Kiel University (CAU), Kiel University of Applied Sciences (FH Kiel) or the Muthesius University of Fine Arts and Design.

Get involved - you can make a difference

Want to bring your own projects into the world? Want to work with others for a good cause? You can get involved in Kiel.

Place for your ideas | Photo: Christoph Corves

The non-profit-organisation provides numerous innovative ways of getting actively involved: practical teaching programmes, the Waterkant Festival and co-working places. Students are put in touch with contacts at companies and charitable organisations in the region.

The "Alte Mu" (old Mu), the former building of the Muthesius University of Fine Arts and Design, is also an inspiring place, and serves as a creative centre offering space for projects and co-working. Various opportunities can be found at Kiel’s "nettekieler Ehrenamtsbüro" (volunteering office for nice citizens of Kiel) for those who only want to help out on an occasional basis. It offers voluntary positions of varying duration and degree of involvement. 

The City of Kiel supports all these services, venues and initiatives conceptually and financially. They stand for the mix of dynamism and balance that makes Kiel so exciting and loveable.