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Helmholtz Graduate School Environmental Health

The International Helmholtz Research School for Diabetes is integrated into the Helmholtz Graduate School Environmental Health - HELENA, established at the Helmholtz Center Munich since 2010. Graduate students of the International Helmholtz Research School benefit from additional support and training opportunities in addition to a vibrant graduate student community offered by HELENA.

HELENA Training and Education consists of mandatory elements, scientific training, professional skills training and offers additional training in third party funding, and language courses. Graduate students can select from lectures, courses, and seminars to develop their own individual curriculum. Training programs offered by collaborating universities and graduate programs are also open to HELENA graduate students, and thus, members of the International Helmholtz Research School for Diabetes. Theses training activities can be accredited with HELENA Equivalents if the participation is certified by the respective institution.

HELENA Equivalents (HE) define a credit point system and correspond to the workload of a training activity. 4 hours workload will be accredited with 1 HE.


All graduate students of the International Helmholtz Research School for Diabetes have to attend the following mandatory HELENA training:

HELENA Lecture Series

This lecture series hosts speakers from different institutes and research units located at the Helmholtz Center Munich and provides an overview on environmental health research. Networking with graduate students between all interdisciplinary research areas is a main focus. Participation is mandatory 3 times (lists of attendance will be circulated by HELENA organizers).

Translational Medicine Seminar Series

This seminar series aims to give an overview on translational medicine starting from the disease towards the understanding of disease mechanisms, epidemiological evidence, identification of biomarkers and development of new therapies and drugs leading to clinical studies. It covers basic concepts in life sciences, ranging from research ethics, good manufacturing practice, translation of knowledge from mice to men, data integration, and the transfer of research to the clinics and industry. Basis researchers, physician scientists and clinicians will introduce challenges and success stories of translational research. The 45 minute talk is followed by “Beer & Brezn” which provides a platform for active discussions and networking. The lecture series welcomes all researchers of the Center. Participation is mandatory 5 times (lists of attendance will be circulated by HELENA organizers).

HELENA Orientation Days

New graduate students receive an introductory training to the mission of  the Helmholz Center Munich, its research program and the HELENA graduate school. Additional training within the 3 day program focuses on workshops in key competences and Good Scientific Practice. During HELENA orientation days, first year students meet their fellows to develop their first scientific and social network.

Additionally, graduate students of the International Helmholtz Research School for Diabetes have to attend the annual Graduate Students Day, as well as the LMU and TUM Welcome Event, respectively.