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The First Student

Karol Kubicki, in 1948 the student with the number ONE, and from 1974 until 1991, Head of the Division of Clinical Neurophysiology at Charlottenburg Clinic of Freie Universität. Image Credit: Bernd Wannenmacher

Stanislaw Karol Kubicki:
The first student registered at Freie Universität

"I had to smile for so many pictures!" says Prof. Stanislaw Karol Kubicki. "All the Americans wanted a picture of the very first student. They really identified with Freie Universität."

For Kubicki, the 22-year-old son of a Polish painter/author and a German painter/teacher, Freie Universität actually began to exist during the summer of 1948, when he was still a student at the Berlin university, Unter den Linden (the former University of Berlin, now Humboldt Universität). Withdrawing from the university in East Berlin was a necessity for him and his fellow students: "The interventions of the SED (Sozialistische Einheitspartei Deutschlands) were so similar to those of the Nazi era, that we couldn't take it any more." He belonged to the founding Student Body Council.

Euphoria accompanied the founding of the new university, as Kubicki describes the atmosphere among the students. They had many ideas: to raise money, balls were organized. Daily life in 1948 was full of obstacles. Medical students had to wait until 1950 for the construction of a lecture hall. The patients welcomed the medical students. "We were a community, one in harmony with the population of Berlin," explains Kubicki.

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