DAAD prize for international students CSE student Gagan Kaushik Manyam awarded
Outstanding grades paired with great voluntary commitment to other international students were the reasons why TU student Gagan Kaushik Manyam from India was honoured with the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) Award as the best international student at TU Braunschweig in 2023.
Professor Henning Wessels from the Institute for Computational Modeling in Civil Engineering was the one who nominated Manyam for the DAAD prize: “Gagan supported new international students both at the Language Centre and in his degree programme Computational Sciences in Engineering (CSE), and invested a lot of his free time to ease their start in Braunschweig. He also worked as a student assistant at our institute and supported many of our course participants here, too. After the exercise courses, Gagan invested extra time to help other international students better understand the course content.” The student’s high level of motivation and his academic achievements further motivated Wessels to nominate him: “I was impressed by his outstanding dedication to his studies and his remarkable ability to capture complex concepts effortlessly. I am all the more delighted that Gagan has received the award and that we were also able to recruit him as a research assistant for our institute after his studies.”
“Best decision of my life”
Winning the DAAD prize is the “cherry on top of the cake” for him, says Gagan Kaushik Manyam. “Studying CSE here at TU Braunschweig was the best decision of my life,” emphasises the 25-year-old. Manyam came to TU Braunschweig in November 2020. Previously, he had successfully completed his Bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering at SASTRA University in India. When choosing the university for his Master’s degree, the main reasons for his decision were the university’s status as part of the TU9 network, the long tradition of TU Braunschweig, and the many positive experiences of other Indian students. The German course integrated into the degree programme, too, convinced him in the end. Manyam successfully completed his Master’s degree with Honors in the winter semester of 2023/24 and looks back fondly on this time: “I met great people right at the start of my studies who, for example, helped me learn German. I would like to thank my flatmate Hendrik Thölking and my tandem partner Dana Sprenger for their help. Thanks to these experiences, I really wanted to give something back and support other students so that they can also have such positive experiences,” says Manyam. He also found the support offered by the CSE office, such as the weekly open consultation hours, to be extremely helpful during his studies.
The only thing the student wasn’t able to complete during his Master’s degree was a stay abroad. “The stay I had planned fell through shortly beforehand due to unforeseen regulations, but I definitely want to catch up on that now as a research assistant,” says Manyam. “I’m very grateful to Professor Wessels for his support during that time, because he got me out of a motivational low and showed me new options for catching up on my experience abroad later.”
A clear goal in sight
As of November 2023, Manyam researches on the topic of Artificial Intelligence in Continuum Mechanics as an assistant at the Institute for Computational Modeling in Civil Engineering. In three years’ time, he would like to hold his doctorate in his hands, and subsequently stay in the region: “Braunschweig is a vibrant city and has a lot to offer for young people, but at the same time is not overcrowded. Research also plays a major role here in the region – it’s the perfect mix for me and I want to continue my career here,” says Manyam looking to the future.
Gagan Kaushik Manyam received the prize endowed with 1,000 euros at the official award ceremony as part of the presentation of the “Deutschlandstipendien” (Germany scholarships) on 8 February.