Maria Belen Rodrigo, Applied Biology

Maria Belen Rodrigo graduated from the Hochschule Bonn-Rhein-Sieg in 2010. Born in Buenos Aires, Argentina, the natural scientist has always been passionate about two things in her life: hockey and biomedical science - the very two reasons she came to and stayed in Germany. She had already started her diploma in Biochemistry in Argentina and did not want to quit studying. She could not speak any German at the time, so she decided to look for a similar course in English and came across the H-BRS and its bachelor degree in Applied Biology.
Hochschule Bonn-Rhein-Sieg

The study programme combines subjects like human biology, microbiology, genetics, cell culture and bioinformatics. It prepares the students for a later career in either industry or at universities.

People From All Over the World

As a student Maria did not have very much free-time. Hockey training, work and university kept her busy. Nevertheless she never deferred any exams and did not fail any of them.

She enjoyed the time she spent with the hockey crew. Thanks to these people she was able to travel all over Germany.

In addition to her sports life she enjoyed sharing her cultural activities with German and foreign friends from H-BRS, who helped make her stay in the country very memorable. “I had the chance to meet people from all over the world”, Maria says.

During her stay in Germany she had the opportunity to work at the Institute of Medical Microbiology, Immunology and Parasitology at the Universitätsklinik/teaching hospital in Bonn where she spent most of her time. She worked in the lab during her studies and was hired after finishing her bachelor thesis in the field of parasite immune-regulation. “For me it was a wonderful experience to learn to adapt to a completely new environment and be able to join the lab with great scientists”, she says.

Focusing on Science

Maria Rodrigo discovered several differences between her courses in Argentina and the courses she took at Hochschule Bonn-Rhein-Sieg. The focus on scientific work stood out the most: “In Germany I have learnt much more about science and scientific thinking”, says Maria. She was also very surprised about the people she worked with. Maria says it was interesting to see how different people behave in different environments: “I truly changed my character during my six years in Germany and I can say I have learned a lot from your culture and ways.”

After her graduation Maria went back to Argentina and where she did her international Master’s degree in Biomedical Sciences. Currently she works for the pharmaceutical company GEMAbiotech. She plays hockey in the premier league for Banco Provincia in Buenos Aires and dreams of getting her PhD one day.

She likes to think back to the time in Germany: “Excellent professionals and crazy people, like myself”, she says laughing. “From the first day on to my last day I learnt a lot and I am very grateful for all the people I met there.”


by Anna Tipping