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100 Years of Warsaw University of Technology

Warsaw University of Technology is the largest academic institute of technology in Poland. The person who first raised the idea of creating a multidisciplinary technical school in Congress Poland was the eminent Polish statesman, Stanisław Staszic. The ceremony of opening the Preparatory School for the Institute of Technology took place on 4 January 1826 in the Kazimierzowski Palace. The school was closed in 1831, following the outbreak of November Insurrection. In 1898, the tsarist government issued a decree setting up Emperor Nicolas II University of Technology with Russian as the language of instruction. In 1903, the institute consisted of 4 faculties; two years later it was closed following a students’ strike. The outbreak of World War I brought a fundamental change; the Germans, who occupied Warsaw, permitted the opening of Warsaw University of Technology with Polish as the language of instruction. The grand opening of the first full-fledged Polish university of technology was held on 15 November 1915 in the edifice of the Physics faculty. In the academic year 1938/1939 the University was composed of five faculties incorporating 68 departments, which enrolled 5 000 students. Unfortunately, military operations at the beginning of World War II brought about the destruction of half of the University’s premises and the majority of its equipment, which forced the closure of this establishment. In 1942, upon the prior consent of Nazi authorities, a State Higher Technical School was inaugurated, whose premises remained open until the outbreak of the Warsaw Uprising in 1944. In 1945, efforts were made to rebuild and reopen Warsaw University of Technology. A solemn opening of the 1945/1946 academic year took place on 13 January 1946. In October 1951, Warsaw University of Technology incorporated the renowned Wawelberg and Rotwand’s School of Engineering. In 1967, a branch of the University was created in Płock. Initially the University consisted of 6 faculties, but already in the academic year 1951/1952 there were as many as fourteen. In December 1945, there were 2 148 enrolled students, and in 1964 – 11 632 students. Numerous eminent scientists lectured at Warsaw University of Technology, including Professor Jan Czochralski and Professor Janusz Groszkowski. In 1991, a Business School was opened at the University and in 2008 the Faculty of Management was established. Nowadays, Warsaw University of Technology consists of 20 faculties housed in 148 buildings, and educates 34 000 students.

The year 2015 has been announced as the year of the 100th anniversary of the revival of Warsaw University of Technology.

dr Andrzej Ulmer