Four students sit on a staircase at the university with a laptop, tablet, smartphone and writing utensils.
© iStockphoto

Every year, DAAD hosts a contest drawing upon different types of creative expression, from essay and poetry writing to photo and video pieces. Contestants have the chance to win great prizes – including a trip to Germany.

Check here to find out about current and past contests.

For the 2023 contest, DAAD asked students to #PictureYourselfInGermany! If you could go anywhere in Germany, where would you go? What would you do? And who would join you? Using the 2D visual artistic medium of their choice, students pictured themselves in Germany by depicting a scene, either a self-portrait or POV, of their dream trip to Germany! Entries could be made digitally or using traditional media. Life imitated art for the grand prize winner, who will won free round-trip airfare to anywhere in Germany!

The #SeeingDouble Photo Contest in 2022 invited students to submit a photo of a place or thing in their community in the US or Canada that has a German Doppelgänger, like the CN Tower in Toronto and its Doppelgänger, the TV Tower in Berlin. The top submissions advanced to the Voting Round, and the three entries with the most votes will won a prize, including free roundtrip airfare to Germany and a free language course at the Goethe-Institut.

1st Place: Kathleen Begley
2nd Place: Jessica Jahn
3rd Place: Hailey Ng

Taking the 90th anniversary of the Bauhaus School in Dessau as a starting point, DAAD North America’s photo contest invited the public to examine their everyday environment for elements of Bauhaus, whether it be a building, an artwork, housewares, or anything in between. Each photo is accompanied by an explanation of how it represents Bauhaus to the entrant.

1st Place: Isabella Gonzalez (University of California, Santa Barbara)
2nd Place: Taylor Tibbs (Carthage College)
3rd Place: Taylor Strege (University of Minnesota)

2015 marked the 25th Year Anniversary of the German Reunification. Political leaders, poets, scholars and eyewitnesses, just to name a few, have eloquently, poignantly and incisively captured and paid homage to the significance of this momentous event that has changed the course of history and transformed the lives of many. However, these testimonies and tributes do not exhaust the ways of commemorating this event which Chancellor Merkel described as, “a dream come true.” It is in this spirit that we invite you to write a 250 word (or less) essay, poem or short story that is inspired by the event of the German reunification.

1st Place: Sonja Schaefer (University of Waterloo)
2nd Place: Evelyn Baxley (Boston College)
3rd Place: Erica Stevens (University of Pittsburgh)

Are you ready for Germany, but stuck without a plan? Turn it around and join the DAAD Germany poetry jam! Whether you write, sing, rhyme or rap, it’s time to get your passion to giddy-yap! So go stand in front of the cam and jam your way to Germany!

Participating in the DAAD German Poetry Jam Contest will be both easy and fun! Create a video (maximum one minute long) of yourself stating why you’d value the opportunity to study in Germany.

1st Prize: Bruno Berastain (University of California of Santa Barbara)
2nd Place: Angelika Milczarski (Brock University)
3rd Place: Sarah Kendall (Rollins College)

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Screenshot of map with location of DAAD-office marked