Mannheim - the city, where the first bicycle was built, the first car developed and the first rocket aircraft constructed!
Today, Mannheim is the economic and cultural centre of the Rhine-Neckar Metropolitan Region and the second-largest city in the state of Baden-Württemberg. The university city is populated by 310.000 citizens whereas the metropolitan region counts more than 2.4 million people.
Mannheim is located in the north-western part of Baden-Württemberg at the conjunction of the rivers Rhine and Neckar. In its direct neighborhood is the city of Heidelberg with its university to which also the Medical Faculty in Mannheim belongs to.
"City of Squares" is a common nickname for Mannheim used in Germany.
Unlike any other city in the country, Mannheim's city centre is laid out in a grid-like pattern, very similar to many North American cities. Local residents often refer to this area as "The Squares". The main street through the squares (the Broad Street) leads to the large Mannheim Palace in which the university of Mannheim is located. The other major street (the Planken) to the Water Tower. Both streets intersect at the Parade Square.
Mannheim is home to one university and numerous colleges with a total of approximately 25.000 students. Amongst others:
- University of Mannheim - 11.000 students; its Business School enjoys worldwide reputation
- Medical Faculty of Mannheim of the University of Heidelberg - 1.400 students; one of Germany's most renowned medical schools
- Mannheim University of Applied Sciences - 4.500 students; specialized in medical and environmental engineering
- Baden-Württemberg Cooperative State University - 5.000 students, combines apprenticeship and academic studies
- Popacademy - 200 students; founded in 2003, it was the first college offering degree programs in pop music and music business
The University Hospital Mannheim is one of the largest university hospitals in Germany. Each year around 70.000 inpatients and 220.000 outpatients are treated in 1352 beds. It consists of 30 departments and institutes of almost every medical specialty.
The predecessors of the University Hospital Mannheim were an emergency house founded in 1701 and from 1806 a city run hospital in the inner city square R5. By 1860 the latter had more than 320 beds, spread out over wards for internal medicine, surgery, obstetrics, infants and patients with scrabies or venereal diseases.
In 1913 the city began to build a new hospital in what was then known as "Neckar Park". The new hospital was completed in the twenties. Its wrought-iron gate, still in use today, had earlier impressed visitors of the Paris World Fair. The ground plan for the 440 metre long building was modeled after the plan of a baroque castle.
Even today the nearly 100-year-old main building dominates the scenery, despite many newer structures added on the spacious grounds in the meantime. Following a pharmacy, a building for Clinical Chemistry and Building No. 2, with its operating theatres and intensive care unit, the city expanded the complex with building No. 1, housing the Departments of Obstetrics & Gynecology, Ophtalmology and Otohinolaryngology, in 1987. Other construction to date included the new east building for Internal Medicine in 1991, the Orthopedic and Trauma Surgery Centre in 1994, the Pediatric and the Urology Departments in 2003 and the Dermatology Department in 2007.
The Medical Faculty of Mannheim is part of the University of Heidelberg. It was founded in 1964 and initially only offered clinical studies for students after having finished their pre-clinical studies in Heidelberg. As of 2006 a new and innovative course of studies called "MaReCuM" has been implemented and therefore pre-clinical studies are now also offered in Mannheim. Currently, more than 1.400 students are enrolled at the Medical Faculty.Central Institute of Mental Health
The renowned Central Institute of Mental Health (CIMH) is affiliated with the University Hospital and the Medical Faculty of Mannheim.
The institute was founded in 1975 right amid Mannheim's city centre. This was a completely new concept in the 1970s and signaled the transition from locating mental health services in remote country hospitals to modern facilities in the cities.
With more than 300 beds, the CIMH is one of the largest and most prestigious academic psychiatric hospitals in Germany. It enjoys global recognition as a centre of modern psychiatry delivering outstanding patient care, research and teaching. Since 1999 the institute is home to Germany's first chair in addiction medicine.
The following departments are available:
- Department of Psychiatry and Psychotherapy
- with Section of Geriatric Psychiatry
- Department of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry and Psychotherapy
- Department of Psychosomatic Medicine and Psychotherapy
- Department of Addictive Behavior and Addiction Medicine
You can reach everything in the city centre and the surrounding area by foot or bike. However, it is advisable to purchase a monthly ticket to use Mannheim's extensive public transport network, consisting of trams and busses.
Mannheim is located amidst one of Germany's most densly populated regions. Its sister city Ludwigshafen can be reached by crossing the Rhine and a journey to Heidelberg only takes 15 minutes by train. Mannheim Main Station is a large hub for interregional and high-speed intercity trains. Therefore Frankfurt, Karlsruhe and Baden Württemberg's capital Stuttgart can be reached in less than 1 hour.Strasbourg (France), Freiburg and Cologne in approximately 1.5 hours. It takes 3 hours to get to Munich as well as Paris (France)and 5 hours if you want to visit Germany's capital Berlin.
Especially travelling with the high-speed intercity trains can be quite expensive. If you have any travel plans, you can contact us and we may be able to secure special offers. For longer trips across Germany and Europe before or after your elective an InterRail Pass (for European residents) or an EuRail Pass (for non-European residents) might be the best choices.
Sights in and around Mannheim
There are many worthwhile sights within the city limits:
Symbol of Mannheim - The Water Tower
- Water Tower and Frederick Square - Mannheim's signature symbol and one of the best preserved Neo-baroque areas with Art Nouveau elements in Germany
- Kunsthalle - a museum of modern and contemporary art, established in 1909
- Rosengarten - a concert hall and congess centre, built in 1903 and beautiful example of Art Nouveau
- Mannheim Palace - the second largest baroque palace in Europe, constructed between 1720 and 1760
- Jesuit Church - most famous baroque church in south-west Germany, finished in 1760Jesuit Church
- Observatory - a tower observatory, that played an important role in astronomy at the end of the 18th century
- Parade Sqare & Market Square - Mannheim's central squares
- National Theatre - one of Germany's most renowned playhouses, offering operas, plays and ballet
- Reiss Engelhorn Museums - several museums, housing many different exhibitions
- Luisenpark - a vast park, harboring a great variety of plants and animals; the perfect open-air chill-out area and playground
- Telecommunications Tower - an amazing possibility to get a perfect view over the city and its surroundings
If you want to explore the vicinity Mannheim, do not miss the following cities:
View over Heidelberg
- Heidelberg - one of the most historic cities in the area (approx. 15 minutes)
- Ladenburg - a small city with a medievil city centre; its roots go back to the Roman Empire (approx. 15 minutes)
- Worms - a city famous for the Cathedral of St Peter (approx. 30 minutes)
- Speyer - location of the largest preserved Romanesque church in the world (approx. 40 minutes)
As centre of a large metropolitan area, Mannheim has a lot to offer. No matter what you like to do in your free time, you will find something:
- The large parks (Luisenpark and Herzogenriedpark) and the river banks of Rhine and Neckar are perfect for relaxation
- In the summer you can go swimming in one of the surrounding lakes, the Herzogenriedbad or all year round in the Herschelbad (built in 1905)
- The city centre attracts with all kinds of stores and coffeehouses
- Numerous clubs and bars enrich Mannheim's night life with great DJs, live music, quiz nights and karaoke events
- Many city-wide events and festivals lure visitors throughout the year. Among them the annual fair and the city festival in May, the International Schillerdays at the National Theatre in June, the biannual music festival Arena of Pop at the Mannheim Palace in July, the Photo Festival in September/October or the International Filmfestival Mannheim-Heidelberg in November
- Opera, theatre and ballet fans can go and see one of many performances at the famous National Theatre for the unusually low price of €6.90 for students
- Some cinemas offer movies in English and other foreign languages on a regular basis
Most physicians speak English very well and are friendly and supportive. Naturally not every patient is used to foreign languages, so it is adviseable to learn some rudimentary German phrases. Without advanced German skills we suggest that you apply for a surgical specialty, the Department of Anesthesiology & Surgical Intensive Care Medicine or the Institute of Clinical Radiology & Nuclear Medicine.
A stethoscope is required in every department. Depending on the specialty, a light pen and a reflex hammer can be useful und should be brought with you, if you posses them. Additionally, you might want to bring along a textbook in order to be able to refresh your knowledge in the specialty of your elective. You can also use our comprehensive and sophisticated library, where numerous English textbooks are available.
The dress code in Germany's hospitals is not nearly as strict as for example in the United Kingdom or the United States. Nonetheless, there are some rules to follow. Medical students are required to wear a white coat, in addition to long trousers and closed shoes.
For your elective you will be placed at one of the following hospitals:
- University Hospital Mannheim
- Central Institute of Mental Health
Due to its location in the Rhine Valley, Mannheim belongs to the sunniest and warmest cities in Germany. The city's citizens enjoy 1673 hours of sunshine annually. Summer top temperatures reach around 30°C (86°F) and a pleasant 20°C (68°F) in the evenings. These temperatures in combination with the influence of the two rivers Rhine and Neckar can lead to sticky weather. Winters are usually rather mild. January is the coldest month with average temperatures around 2°C (36°F). Because of this snowfall is a very rare occasion.