Hall of Femmes

In the last 50 years, many women with interesting careers and professional biographies have studied and completed their doctorates or their academic qualifications at Paderborn University. They have helped shape the university in its now fifty-year career and are thus not only an essential piece of the mosaic in the overall picture of the university, but also possess a role model function for many female pupils, students and young female scientists.

The Hall of Femmes, implemented by the Central Equal Opportunity Officer in cooperation with the Mentoring Programs team and the Center of Gender Studies, will present examples of some of these former female students and doctoral candidates to mark the university's fiftieth anniversary. In the form of a colorful, digital mosaic made up of various interviews, the Hall of Femmes provides insights into their personal careers in order to encourage other women to follow similar paths in life - and, of course, to arouse curiosity for Paderborn University.


Mechanical Engineering
Business Administration and Economics
Arts and Humanities
Computer Science, Electrical Engineering and Mathematics
Professor Katharina Mehner-Heindl
Katharina Mehner-Heindl completed her doctorate at Paderborn University and has been Professor of Computer Science, specialising in web applications, at Offenburg University of Applied Sciences in Baden-Wuerttemberg since 2010.
Ishag, Lissy
Lissy Ishag
Lissy Ishag studied American Studies, English and Media Studies at Paderborn University and worked as a radio presenter. She’s been working as a TV presenter for German TV channel ZDF for 9 years now.
Salié, Katty
Katty Salié
Katty Salié is a journalist and has been presenting legendary ZDF cultural show “aspekte” since 2012. She completed her degree in Paderborn in 2000 with a thesis on the love relationships of Emma in Flaubert’s “Madame Bovary”.
Kutyniok, Gitta
Professor Gitta Kutyniok
Gitta Kutyniok currently works as a professor at Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich (LMU), where she is Chair of Mathematical Foundations of Artificial Intelligence in the Department of Mathematics.
Habig, Therese
Therese Habig
Therese Habig is Managing Director and co-founder of safety innovation center gGmbH in Paderborn, which specialises in research and digitisation for civil safety.
Festing, Marion
Professor Marion Festing
Marion Festing is Professor of Human Resource Management and Intercultural Leadership at ESCP Business School in Berlin. She studied Business Administration at Paderborn University, where she also completed her doctoral degree and habilitation.
Sigrid Blömeke
Professor Sigrid Blömeke
Sigrid Blömeke is Director of the Centre for Educational Measurement (CEMO) at the University of Oslo. Between 1985 and 2001, she completed her degree, doctoral degree and habilitation at Paderborn University.
Flagmeier, Vanessa
Junior Professor Vanessa Flagmeier
Vanessa Flagmeier is Junior Professor of Accounting at the University of Passau and obtained her doctoral degree on the topic of “Financial statements’ tax disclosure” from Paderborn University in 2017.
Professor Andrea Kaimann
Andrea Kaimann is a professor at Bielefeld University of Applied Sciences. As Vice-Dean, she’s also responsible for developing the university’s Gütersloh campus. She completed her doctoral degree on “Reducing process times by curing adhesive bonds using inductive heating” at Paderborn University in 2001.
Weiß-Borkowski, Nathalie-Farbe
Professor Nathalie Weiß-Borkowski
Nathalie Weiß-Borkowski is currently Professor of Materials Engineering at South Westphalia University of Applied Sciences. She did her doctorate in Mechanical Engineering at Paderborn University on “Analysis of the deformation behaviour of transition zones of partially press-hardened structures”.
Dilger, Bernadette
Professor Bernadette Dilger
Bernadette Dilger is Professor of Business Education at the University of St. Gallen in Switzerland. She completed her doctoral degree on “The self-reflective learner” at Paderborn University in 2007. Her research focuses on impact-oriented business didactics.
Brassat, Katharina
Dr Katharina Brassat
Katharina Brassat works in the field of technical innovations and is currently training to be a patent attorney in Munich. She completed her doctoral degree in Nanotechnology at Paderborn University in 2018.
Dr Kathrin Wunsch
Kathrin Wunsch is a post-doc researcher at the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology. She conducts research into the psychological determinants of physical activity and develops mobile health apps. She completed her doctoral degree on “Anticipatory action control” at Paderborn University in 2015.
Jain, Mitisha
Mitisha Jain
Mitisha Jain completed her MSc at Paderborn University and is currently researching defects in graphemes and other 2D materials for application in sensor technology and electronic devices as a member of the “Atomistic Simulation” working group at the Helmholtz Zentrum Dresden-Rossendorf (HZDR).
Claudia Auinger
Dr Claudia Auinger
Claudia Auinger opted for a career in regional economic development at an early stage and continues to support local companies with their development to this day.
Donhauser, Sinah
Sinah Donhauser
Sinah Donhauser is a radio presenter and local journalist. She has hosted the morning show on local Paderborn radio station “Radio Hochstift” since 2018. In 2020, she received the German Radio Award. She studied Media Studies at Paderborn University from 2011 to 2015.
Professor Andrea Luke
Andrea Luke is Chair of Technical Thermodynamics in the Department of Mechanical Engineering at the University of Kassel. Her research focuses on energy-efficient transport processes in multiphase systems in regular collaboration with Paderborn University, where she completed her doctorate on “Heat transfer during boiling” and habilitated in technical thermodynamics.
Truong, Thuy-Van
Thuy-Van Truong
Thuy-Van Truong studied Art, English and American Studies at Paderborn University. She’s an actress, two-time Vice German Table Football Champion and was awarded the Molino-Winkler scholarship for her outstanding artistic achievements.
Brüseke, Ute
Professor Ute Brüseke
Ute Brüseke is a professor at the University of Applied Sciences and Arts (HAWK) in Göttingen. She studied Industrial Engineering at Paderborn University and completed her doctoral degree at the Heinz Nixdorf Institute (HNI).
Gerlach, Sailkal
Saikal Gerlach
Saikal Gerlach studied Business Administration & Economics at Paderborn University. In addition to her main job as a risk manager in the construction industry, she is founder of non-profit women’s initiative “HerCentury Germany e.V.”, which aims to promote greater gender equality and diversity.
Herres-Pawlis, Sonja
Professor Sonja Herres-Pawlis
Sonja Herres-Pawlis has been Chair of Bioinorganic Chemistry at RWTH Aachen University since 2015, after posts in Munich, Dortmund and Stanford. She completed her doctorate on “Oxygen activation with copper complexes” at Paderborn University in 2005.
Dr Anika Thun
Anika Thun is currently Managing Director of Kalypso Media Group. She completed her doctoral degree on “Life in reboot times: an empirical case study analysis in the film and games industry” at Paderborn University in 2020.
Stahl, Katharina
Professor Katharina Stahl
Katharina Stahl is Professor of Artificial Intelligence at South Westphalia University of Applied Sciences in Soest. She spent a total of 17 years at Paderborn University, where she completed her degree, followed by a doctorate at the Heinz Nixdorf Institute (HNI) and a role in project management at the Software Innovation Campus Paderborn (SCIP).
Burda-Zoyke, Andrea
Professor Andrea Burda-Zoyke
Andrea Burda-Zoyke is married with one son and Professor of Vocational and Business Education at the University of Kiel. She studied Business Education at Paderborn University and received her doctoral degree in Paderborn in 2012.
Grafe, Silke
Professor Silke Grafe
Silke Grafe currently holds the Chair of School Pedagogy at the University of Würzburg and received her doctorate from Paderborn University in 2007.
Jakob, Eva
Junior Professor Eva Jakob
Eva Jakob is Junior Professor of Social Entrepreneurship at the University of Bayreuth. From 2014 to 2021, she worked as a research assistant and post-doc at TecUP – Paderborn University’s business start-up centre.
Kliewer, Natalia
Professor Natalia Kliewer
Natalia Kliewer is a professor at the Free University of Berlin (FU). She studied Business Informatics at Paderborn University, where she subsequently completed her doctorate in mathematical optimisation for transport planning.
Sierak, Paulina
Dr Paulina Sierak
Paulina Sierak heads up the Data-Efficient & Automated Learning group at the Fraunhofer Institute for Integrated Circuits IIS. She completed her doctoral degree at Paderborn University, in co-operation with BMW AG Munich.
Schwake-Anduschus, Christine
Dr Christine Schwake-Anduschus
Christine Schwake-Anduschus is Senior Research Director at the Max Rubner Institute (MRI). She completed her doctoral degree on “The incorporation of antibiotic residues into crops” at Paderborn University in 2008.
Gefele, Katharina
Dr Katharina Gefele
Katharina Gefele studied at Paderborn University, where she also completed her doctoral degree. She currently works as a deputy project manager at the German Rectors’ Conference (HRK).
Purnaprajna, Madhura
Professor Madhura Purnaprajna
Madhura Purnaprajna is a Professor in Electronics Engineering at the People´s Education Society (PES) University, Bangalore/India. She completed her doctorate on “Run-time reconfigurable multiprocessors” in Paderborn University’s Department of Electrical Engineering in 2009.
Professor Kathrin Padberg-Gehle
Kathrin Padberg-Gehle is Professor of Applied Mathematics at Leuphana University Lüneburg. She completed a degree and also a doctoral degree as well as worked as a research assistant in Paderborn between 1995 and 2007.
Dr Anna-Lena Berscheid
Anna-Lena Berscheid completed her doctoral degree in Sociology at Paderborn University in 2019 and has been working as a consultant in the Research Career group at the German Research Foundation (DFG) since May 2020.
Groening, Yvonne
Dr Yvonne Groening
Yvonne Groening is Managing Partner of Paderborn spin-off myconsult GmbH. After completing her doctoral degree at Paderborn University, she founded myconsult together with her co-managing directors, who she met at the university.
Rodehuth, Maria
Dr Maria Rodehuth
After a degree in Business Administration & Economics, Maria Rodehuth worked with Professor Weber in the Department of Human Resource Management and completed her doctorate on “Human resource strategies” in 1997. Today, she is Managing Director of Paderborner Stadthallen-Betriebs GmbH.
Sigrid Beer
Sigrid Beer
Sigrid Beer, a Paderborn graduate who worked as a research assistant at the university for many years, was a member of the parliament of North Rhine-Westphalia for Bündnis 90/Die Grünen for 17 years.
Flaßkamp, Kathrin
Professor Kathrin Flaßkamp
Kathrin Flaßkamp is Professor of Modelling and Simulation of Technical Systems at Saarland University. She is a Paderborn University alumna, having studied Engineering Mathematics and completing her doctoral degree here in 2013.
Helmling, Meike
Dr Meike Helmling
Meike Helmling currently works as Head of Business Area at Project Management Jülich in research funding for the state of North Rhine-Westphalia (NRW). She completed her doctorate in Automotive Lightweight Design in Paderborn in 2017.
Raphael, Sabine
Dr Sabine Raphael
Sabine Raphael currently works as a data scientist at insurance company HUK in Coburg and completed her doctorate on “Characterisation of mesopic vision for luminance photometry” at Paderborn University in 2010.
Lenzing, Anke
Professor Anke Lenzing
Anke Lenzing is Professor of English Language Teaching at the University of Innsbruck. She completed her habilitation at Paderborn University in 2018, receiving the Venia Legendi for English Linguistics and Psycholinguistics.
Weber, Lena-Farbe
Dr Lena Weber
Lena Weber is Team Lead at the Centre of Excellence Women and Science (CEWS) at the Leibniz Institute for the Social Sciences in Cologne and, as a doctoral student, post-doc, interim professor and subject spokesperson, helped shape the Department of Sociology at Paderborn University for over 10 years.
Tünnermann, Maike
Dr Maike Tünnermann
Maike Tünnermann works as a project manager in an environmental analytics company. Prior to this, she worked on the production of sustainable hydrogen using solar energy up until completing her doctoral degree in Chemistry in 2018.
Vaßholz, Mareen-Farbe
Dr Mareen Vaßholz
Mareen Vaßholz is Vice President Corporate Strategy & Digital Transformation at WAGO in Minden. She completed her doctoral degree on “Systematics for the economic design of intelligent technical systems” in 2015.
Windt, Karin-Farbe
Dr Karin Windt
Karin Windt advises companies on issues relating to their online presence. After a doctorate on novels by Czech author Libuše Moníková, she made the move into IT and set up her own business as an online media consultant in Berlin in 2010.
Eller, Elke
Dr Elke Eller
Elke Eller completed her doctoral degree at Paderborn University in 2014. She is a supervisory board member, investor and coach, specialising in the transformation of organisations and the role of people in these processes.
Mostaghim, Sanaz
Professor Sanaz Mostaghim
Sanaz Mostaghim is Professor of Artificial Intelligence in the Faculty of Computer Science at the University of Magdeburg. She completed her doctorate at Paderborn University in 2004 and subsequently conducted research in Zurich and Karlsruhe.
Sasse, Miriam
Dr Miriam Sasse
Miriam Sasse is Agile Transformation Lead at Arvato Systems and also offers agile leadership consulting services and agility training in Paderborn. She completed her doctorate on artificial intelligence for extrusion lines at Paderborn University in 2012.
Thissen, Anne
Dr Anne Thissen
Anne Thissen studied Sports Science at Paderborn University and did a doctorate at the University of Kassel. She now works as a pedagogical supervisor for second division football club SC Paderborn 07’s youth academy.
Käferle, Heike
Heike Käferle
Heike Käferle is Managing Director of an IT company. She studied Mathematics and Computer Science at Paderborn University and remained connected to the university even after graduating, as Chair of the University Society.
Hartmann, Doreen
Dr Doreen Hartmann
Doreen Hartmann is Head of Exhibitions at the Deutsches Hygiene-Museum Dresden (DHMD). Prior to this, she worked as a curator at the Heinz Nixdorf Forum (HNF) in Paderborn. Her interdisciplinary positioning between media, literature, computer science and art has opened a wealth of doors for her.