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Germany 'should shell out for Swiss study'

Published: 23 Oct 2012 11:46 GMT+02:00

Swiss colleges receive government funding for domestic students, but not for foreigners, leaving them with budget problems when Germans attend -- possibly to escape chronic overcrowding at home and to get a degree from high-ranking universities.

Now, the Tagesspiegel newspaper reported on Tuesday, the Swiss government is calling on the Germans to match the funding of between €8,000 and €40,000 it pays per student, depending on their degrees.

“Exploratory talks” have already been held between the two countries to discuss the possibility of Germany paying for students who embark on a degree in Switzerland, said Swiss Education Secretary Mauro Dell’Ambrogio.

Swiss nationals studying at German universities would theoretically be paid for by their government in return, he added. As there are far fewer Swiss coming to Germany to study, this set-up would leave the German government as a net contributor.

The country had, Dell'Ambrogio said, put measures in place to deter foreign students. Zurich University charges Germans just over €400 more than Swiss students per semester, and others only accept students with top grades.

Dell’Ambrogio told the paper that “a Europe-wide solution was not realistic,” and suggested Germany might resist a bilateral agreement as it might trigger its other neighbouring countries to ask for a similar set-up.

In Austria, universities introduced a quota for how many foreign students could study medicine in 2007. And in Belgium, similar thoughts are percolating through higher education establishments as they educate increasing numbers of French students.

The Local/jcw

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

Your comments about this article

14:12 October 23, 2012 by MrNosey
I'm betting Germany will jump at the chance when Switzerland releases all of the money parked in its banks which should have gone into German, Greek, Italian, French, you name it tax receipts to pay for students (among other things) in those countries.
15:08 October 23, 2012 by vanderpoel54
Surely university is not "free" and German students studying in Switzerland have to pay costs like tuition.
15:20 October 23, 2012 by sonriete
Wow, Zurich University charges Germans €400 more per semester than Swiss students. and this is presented as though it is something very significant.

in America a student from New York will pay $15,000 more per semester to attend a state university in Pennsylvania than a home state student.

The home state student will pay $15,000 per semester while the out of state student $30,000. It is amazing how inexpensive higher education is all over Europe, yet silicon valley is in America.
15:41 October 23, 2012 by taxpayerrr
The message is , No Free Ride !
17:07 October 23, 2012 by blackboot11
To the Swiss:

When you get your Swiss bankers to return the money held in the 'unspoken' Swiss accounts from the Cold War (the GDR,Stazi and others) , the Nazis and Dictators, to their rightful owners....then we can talk. So far you are sounding very similar to the Vatican, crying 'poor mouth' with all your riches.....
18:28 October 23, 2012 by frankiep
For all of you crying about money in Swiss bank accounts that "belong" in other countries: get over it. People who have money in Swiss bank accounts have broken no Swiss laws. The great thing about Switzerland is that there you truely are innocent until proven guilty - so if you want to open a bank account you don't have to allow the bank to dig through all of your personal and financial history to do so. If someone is not paying their taxes in Germany, the US, Italy, or wherever, then it is the problem of those respective countries and not Switzerland. But rather than get their own houses in order by encouraging people to keep money in their own countries, places like Germany and the US are attempting to impose their will on the government of a sovereign nation.

Switzerland is a tiny, landlocked nation with hardly any natural resources and a population smaller than many cities, yet it is an economic power with a strong, stable currency and outstanding quality of life (and government services) because it encourages people to invest and do business there with low taxes and a pro-business attitude.

Perhaps other countries would be well served to learn from Switzerland rather than demonizing it and blaming it for their own problems.
18:47 October 23, 2012 by raandy
Germany and Switzerland have been doing this for decades, now it comes under the microscope.

This is one of many reactions over the paid Swiss whistle blower concerning German tax doggers.
19:51 October 23, 2012 by Englishted
Keep talking like this Switzerland and all the German millionaires will leave with Micheal .
00:24 October 24, 2012 by ChrisRea
So why does Switzerland not simply increase the fee for foreigners? Instead of 400 euro, they can ask whatever they feel is fair. Why do they have to beg the money from Germany?
01:10 October 24, 2012 by sonriete
@ChrisRea;

Are you meaning to suggest a student who wants to go to University in a foreign country should pay for it him/her self ??!!

Don't be ridiculous, that would be common sense.....
11:58 October 24, 2012 by mfharis
How about Germany calling foreign students to bear the educational expense by themselves? German universities hosts more foreign students than Switzerland and Austria combined. Last year BBC published an article which denotes "Germany: top for Foreign Students"

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-12610268
09:40 October 26, 2012 by mitanni
Swiss universities want to take top German talent and then have German tax payers foot the bill for it? I don't think so. If the Swiss feel that they need more money from German students, they should charge more.
08:49 November 18, 2012 by electric38
Many universities are putting their class lectures online. This accomplishes a few goals.

1-Eliminates redundancy. Why have 5,000 teachers teaching the "same thing" when the best (most productive) could do the same via 1 internet broadcast.

2-Lowers the cost. Having a classroom of 20,000, as opposed to 20 or 30 is likely more cost effective.

3-Uploading the class books for student downloading reduces paper, shipping and middleman costs. How much does it cost to upload a book or video that teaches tens of thousands pursuing a higher quality of life?

4-Wont our children and grandchildren benefit from the higher level of education achieved by the present generation of students? Why cheat them out of this by pricing people out of the learning market?

5-Many countries are already putting this into practice as technology allows. Inexpensive e-readers and laptops are becoming more common as are cell towers that transmit the wisdom of mankind to any motivated person. Why should Germany be last in line to utilize the many forms of educational technology as quickly as it emerges?

6-Take a quick peek at the google "big shot" camera site. It is a fine example of teaching a course in 80 languages at the same time. You get the idea. Books should be Free.com is also a nice example of what is possible.

And on and on....
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