STEP (Short-Time Exchange Programme) is a bilateral extracurricular student exchange programme of DHBW Mosbach, Campus Bad Mergentheim and Centria University of Applied Sciences in Kokkola, Finnland.

STEP is part of the Baden-Württemberg-STIPENDIUM for University Students –BWS plus,
a programme of the Baden-Württemberg Stiftung

STEP ...

  • is a two-week student exchange program of Centria University of Applied Sciences, Kokkola, Finland and DHBW Mosbach – Campus Bad Mergentheim, Germany
  • includes a one week period in Finnland (March) and a one week period in Germany (September) organized by participating students and university staff
  • addresses first year students in order to give them a low-threshold international experience right at the beginning of their studies as a potential door opener for further longer period of study abroad (semester abroad, study projects abroad, bachelor thesis abroad, etc.)
  • provides an intensive intercultural experience containing an online intercultural training session
  • includes an insipirng programme with university life, facorty tours, cultural experiences, sightseeing, and much more
  • is financed by the Baden-Württemberg Stiftung with a 300€ allowance for each participating student (for travel period) for max. 8 students from each university

Travel Periods

DHBW students visit Centria University of Applied Sciences: wk11/2024

Centria students visit DHBW Mosbach - Campus Bad Mergentheim: wk37/2024

Finland week March 2023

Quotes from Participants

"In only a week I got to know many commonalities as well as surprising differences between the way of living of Germans and Finns. We undertook not only typically Finnish activities, like ice swimming, floorball, and reindeer patting, but also tried the unseasoned national dishes and over sweetened desserts, like ‘Karjalanpiirakka’, I would not have expected this way. We found out about how Finns handle difficulties in their lives with their special attitude towards life, called ‘Sisu’ which I think is also the secret to being considered the happiest country in the world for many years in row. Moreover, we got introduced into some easter traditions, like the easter fire and the ‘Fazer Mignon’. Overall, it’s been an unforgettable week and an awesome experience which I’m very grateful to have been a part of."
Sophia Zürn (Ziehl-Abegg)

"Once the Finns are thawed, get ready for a few crazy games"
Luis Wronski (Linde)

„For me it was an indescribably beautiful time in Kokkola, I was able to gather many new experiences, met very great people and experienced unique activities such as going to a Finnish sauna with subsequent ice bathing or petting reindeer, all in all it was a unique and unforgettable week for me, thank you very much that I was allowed to participate in this program.“
Luca-Luisa Langer (Systemair)

"The week in Kokkola was unique, I met so amazing people there who I can now call my friends and I experienced so many typically finnish things for example stroking a reindeer or going in a finnish sauna, so it was an awesome week and I am so glad that I had the chance to participate in this program."
Simon Stockert (ebmpapst)

"The STEP program was a great experience for me: I got to meet great new people, was able to get an insight into another university and another country, and can now imagine spending a semester abroad even more."
Theresa Krell (Baier&Michels)

"The week in Finland was a great opportunity to connect with people and learn about finish culture, especially sauna with ice swimming."
Eric Heffner (ebmpapst)

"The opportunity to spend a week in Finland with the STEP program helped me a lot to be more confident about talking to people in another language. We had an amazing week where we not only got to know the finish culture. We visited laboratories, walked on frozen fjords, and got to know very nice people. I think for everyone I can say it is definitely worth it to apply for this program, especially when your interested in to spend a semester abroad."
Tessina Ettl (Linde)

"From petting reindeer to walking on the sea to ice swimming, Finland is definitely worth a trip."
Sebastian Klopf (Rösler)




Finland March 2022

Quotes Participants 2022

Daniel Stetel (Continental):

The exchange programme provides unique experiences like walking on the frozen sea in a wonderful natural setting. This is how we Germans see Finnland. These insights as well as the modern and friendly Campus in Kokkola are highly recommended to future participants of the STEP programme.

Janik Müller (Ziehl-Abegg)

It definitely was woth it takinf part in the STEP programme. Finnland is a beautiful country and we had a great time. My personal highlight was to pet reindeers! All in all I gained lots of experiences which will be helpful in my future life.

Justin Haidt (GEMÜ):

The STEP programme is the highlight of my studies so far! One week full of intercultural experiences. You can practice and improve your English which will help to master future study periods abroad. Experiencing the Sauna (as well as a cool beer afterwards) has been one of my highlights. I do strongly recommend the STEP programme to students! Be part of it!

Denis Kampe (Würth Industrie):

It has been a great experience to taking part in this short programme even in my first year. Getting to know the people, the culture and nature was overwehlming. I especially liked the finnish second-hand shops: you can always find a bargain.

Benjamin Schwab (Wittenstein):

The STEP programme offers the unique opportunity to gain international experiences and to widen ones horizon even in the first year of studying. The friendly and familiy atmosphere at Centria University was amazing. As a surprise professors in Finnland are called by their first names. Besides university live we experienced snow hiking, downhill sledge riding as well as having a Sauna. Take part in this programme, you will not regret it!

Juliana Leute (Würth Industrie):

The hospitality of our finnish fellow students has been outstanding! Beeing together as a group 24h helped to learn about the people and culture. We returned back to Germany with an extensive bunch of positive experiences.

Mareike Kühnle (ebmpapst):

Great to get this opportunity in the first year of studying. Building bridges instead of walls becomes more and more important, and we exactly learned that - even in that short period of time.

Deborah Häfner (Tec Alliance):

The time in Kokkola was packed with culture, tradition and way of life in Finnland. Especially the nature in winter and the hospitality of our finnish friends were breathtaking.

Germany Autumn 2022

Quotes Participants 2022

Hendrik Bryggmaster

A very rewarding trip where you got to know the culture of Bad Mergentheim. The lesson with Professor Volker was interesting as well as the visit to the fan factory. The best part was still the interaction with the other students, it went well even though they were significantly younger. I got to practice communicating in English as well as taste traditional German food. I absolutely recommend students to take advantage of these STEP trips that are arranged. You make contacts and friends for life.

Mari-Ella Kejonen

The program was very nicely planned and there were many things that I really enjoyed. The German students were very good hosts and they took care of us very well. I learned so much about the culture, and the activities were also interesting and supported my learning. One thing that I thought was absolutely great was that we travelled to other cities too, for example Rothenburg. It gave me a rare opportunity to really see the country and what it is like. Another thing that was a valuable experience was that we ate typical German food almost everyday. Food is  a big part of a country’s culture so that was really great! All in all the exchange week was a very important and once-in-a-lifetime experience, which I will never forget. I actually miss it quite much. It’s great that other students can have the same opportunity in the following two years, and I think there should absolutely be more chances like this!

How to apply?

DHBW Mosbach students

⇒ via the DHBW STEP moodle-course

Centria University of Applied Sciences students

⇒ Centria will supply interested students with an application form

If you failed to receive an application form from your University, send an email to and individually ask for it

!!!   Application period for the 2024 programme: 1. - 15. December 2023  !!!


Project Management (DHBW Mosbach - Campus Bad Mergentheim)

Volker Siegismund (Prof. Dr.-Ing. )

Project Management (Centria University of Applied Sciences)

Marja-Liisa Kaakko (Head of Industrial Management Degree Programme)

Marko Laitila

Project Administration (DHBW Mosbach)

Gabi Päuser