German Federal President Steinmeier Awards Prize Winners
On 16 November 2021, German Federal President Frank-Walter Steinmeier honoured this year’s first prize winners of the German History Competition in his official residence Bellevue Palace in Berlin. The topic of the competition was “Times in Motion: Sports and Society" which encouraged over 3,400 young people nationwide to send in 1,349 entries.
Pupils from Berlin, North Rhine-Westphalia, Saxony-Anhalt and Hesse won the five first prizes in the German History Competition. Their research focused, for example, on a Jewish sports club at the time of National Socialism, on sport and the emancipation of women, and on the flight of the Afghan national soccer team to Germany in the 1980s.
German Federal President Frank-Walter Steinmeier and Thomas Paulsen, member of the Executive Board of Körber-Stiftung, honoured the award winners at a ceremony attended by 70 invited guests.
In his welcoming speech, Mr. Steinmeier referred to the topic of the competition theme when he said: "We live in turbulent times, indeed, even though the event of the century, the pandemic, has at least temporarily forced us all to come to a standstill on several occasions. Almost all of us, I should say. Because, as you can see, participants of the German History Competition couldn’t be stopped - certainly not its prize winners. The pandemic may have hindered them, but it could not prevent them from submitting many great contributions."
Thomas Paulsen emphasised: "The current 27th call for entries to our History Competition was dominated by the COVID-19 pandemic, home-schooling and closed archives and libraries. We are all the more pleased that, despite the extremely difficult conditions, we received 1,349 entries from 3,400 students. The years 2020/2021 certainly offered plenty of food for thought about the social significance of sport, about the question of what holds us together as a society and what it takes to experience a sense of community."
Since 1973, the Hamburg based Körber-Stiftung and the office of the German Federal President’s Office have been organising the history competition, which is based on the initiative by former Federal President Gustav Heinemann and Hamburg entrepreneur and donour Kurt A. Körber. It has become Germany’s largest historical research competition for young people with more than 150,700 participants and approximately 34,800 submissions to date. The competition is announced in a two-year cycle with changing topics.
Overview of Five First Prize Winners 2020/2021
- Elias Sauer and Héctor Pio-Rendón Gutmann, 10th grade, Isaak Emil Lichtigfeld Schule, Frankfurt, Hesse: "Going through turbulent times - the Jewish sports club 'SV Philanthropin', 1921 to 1938"
- Hannah Reehuis, 10th grade, Städtisches Gymnasium, Ochtrup, North Rhine-Westphalia: "Tennis – from a privilege to a mass sport activity"
- Simon Große-Bley und Malin Käter, 12th grade, Pelizaeus-Gymnasium, Paderborn, North Rhine-Westphalia: "'Away game.' The flight of the Afghan national soccer team to Paderborn"
- Carolin Brienen, Hans Frei Heitmüller and Jonathan Schierig, 9th grade, Evangelische Schule Frohnau, Berlin: "The Ladies' Swimming Club 'Charlottenburg Nixen'. Emancipation through sport?"
- Anne Grabo, 10th grade, Lucas-Cranach-Gymnasium, Lutherstadt Wittenberg, Saxony-Anhalt: "'The Peace Tour' - it 'will be what we make of it' - An analysis of the world's largest amateur stage race from 1950 to 1965"