Portraits of female professors at Friedrich Schiller University Jena

Women in Academia

Women professors at Friedrich Schiller University Jena​
Portraits of female professors at Friedrich Schiller University Jena
Image: Anne Günther (University of Jena)

Change needs role models

Mathilde Vaerting was the first woman to be appointed to a professorship at the Friedrich Schiller University of Jena in 1923. She was the second woman to hold a professorship at a German university. Women holding this position used to be extremely rare for a very long time. Academia was dominated by men and offered young women hardly any female role models.

In order to promote equality between women and men, the Friedrich Schiller University Jena supports talented women in their academic career by various means. In order to inspire young women with a passion for research to pursue a career in academia, they need highly visible and approachable role models of successful female researchers who show them that becoming a professor can be achieved with a lot of passion, self-confidence and determination.

In the portrait series "Women in Academia", women professors at Friedrich Schiller University describe their academic career paths in pictures and in writing. They reveal how they managed to overcome challenges and reconcile multiple obligations, demonstrating that it was worth the effort to pursue "the best profession in the world". The portraits also show that there is no single career path, but rather a great variety of paths to a professorship.

We would like to thank the authors of the portrait series for their openness and willingness to support their fellow female early career researchers. Lastly, we hope that our readers will be inspired and encouraged by this series.


Prof. Dr. Uwe Cantner

Vice President for Early Career Researchers and Diversity Management

Women professors at the faculties

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