The University of Passau in Lower Bavaria, Germany, is a public research university founded in 1973. However, its roots date back to 1622, with an Institute for Catholic Studies in a high school.
After several name changes through the centuries and a period of abandonment, it was re-established as Passauer Lyzeum, a high school which eventually became a philosophical-theological university in 1923.
After the university was forced to change its logo by the Nazis, a new seal was created, representing Mary with Jesus vanquishing evil. With the establishment of a new university, the religious symbolism was left behind for a neutral logo.
Today, it is divided into the Faculties of Law, Business Administration and Economics, Arts and Humanities, and Computer Science and Mathematics.
The modern campus, a stone’s throw from the baroque Old Town of Passau, has won numerous architecture prizes. Complementing the university’s many interdisciplinary courses, all faculties are housed along a single street along the left bank of the river Inn. There is an award-winning refectory, as well as four cafeterias, which, this being Bavaria, all serve beer. One building breaks from the modern design, a 14th-century convent, housing both the language centre and the Sisters of the German House of Saint Mary in Jerusalem and the student church St. Nikola.
First-year students are welcomed with a reception in the refectory with traditional Bavarian foods, including Leberkäse (similar to meatloaf), Bavarian Pretzels and beer, with welcome speeches by the president of the university and the mayor of Passau.