Department Events · Travel Abroad · Uncategorized

Oh, the Places You’ll Go III: Flow House in Vienna

vienna_pic

Vienna

Feeling the Wanderlust this fall?  Consider joining Dr. Knight at the Flow House in Vienna next semester!  We’ll spend the semester exploring monstrosity, madness, and the metropolis in GES 335 (German Film) and GES 341 (Austrian Literature in Translation) while getting to know Vienna, which the Independent just named the world’s best city to live in for the ninth straight year.

In addition to taking one or two German Studies courses with Dr. Knight (for Division II credit, or towards your German Studies major/minor), you can take Econ(Div IV), Music(Div III), and History (Div I) – alongside German at any level.

We’ll get to know Vienna and its environs with excursions and day trips, but we’ll also take two longer trips as a group, to the beautiful and fascinating cities of Prague and Berlin.  Weekends and spring break will be yours to use for exploring on your own.

What’s more: this year GPS is offering $2,000 in flight scholarships for all Flow House participants – more than enough to cover the cost of getting there and back.

Check out the application at studyabroad.wfu.edu or email Dr. Knight (knightml) for more information!

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Department Events · Student Awards · Travel Abroad · Uncategorized

Summer Internships in Germany, Part III

Part III of our series about Summer Internships in Germany. For more information, please contact Dr. Wiggers at wiggerh@wfu.edu.

Summer Internships in Germany

In the summer of 2017 four of our German majors and minors lived and worked in Germany.  The students applied to internship programs that the Department of German and Russian facilitates each year.

The internships are three months long (Mid-May to Mid-August), well paid, and include work permits as well as insurance.

The summer internships are fantastic opportunities for students of German to work and live in a German-speaking environment, make new connections at international companies, experience work and culture first hand, and to learn new skills!

And, of course, students with international work experience are very marketable on the U.S. job market.

Our department is working with two organizations that provide summer internships in Germany:

  • German-American Exchange, Inc.

Internships with this group are geared toward students with a background in Business and STEM.  The internships are competitive and often, but not always, with bigger, international companies.

  • Cultural Vistas

Internships with this group are geared toward students with a background in Humanities, Languages, and Arts. The internships are with medium-sized German companies.

Stay tuned this month for more information and conversations about summer internships in Germany!

Here are the stories of our 2017 interns:

Part 3) Hanna Randall: TÜV Hessen, Frankfurt

During the summer of 2017, I completed an internship with TÜV Technische Überwachung Hessen GmbH in Frankfurt, Germany.  TÜV is a technical inspection and certification organization that operates under a broad range of services. I worked under the VP of Industry Service, Thore Lapp. My primary responsibility was to provide assistance to the industry service division by translating documents and presentations. Throughout the three months, I was given the freedom to choose a research topic for a project that I would later present to the division. I chose to identify and research the top ten “potential” clients to grow business operations. I was also sent on business trips to many of the TÜV locations around Germany, including the headquarter of TÜV SÜD in Munich. While visiting the locations, I would tour construction sites, energy sites, incineration operations, material-testing labs, and many other sites that fall under the requirements for government/private inspection. Although I did not have much interest in industry before the internship, I ended up learning a lot about the field and I gained practical experience in a professional setting. This internship has been a huge talking point in many of my job interviews, as it is something very unique to have on a resume. I met many new and interesting people while working at TÜV as well as being a part of the German-American Exchange. On the weekends, I would travel with some of the people I met within the program to other countries. I still keep in contact with the friends I made from other universities.

Hannah Randall

Hanna Randall giving a presentation at the TÜV, Frankfurt, Germany.
Department Events · Student Awards · Travel Abroad · Uncategorized

Summer Internships in Germany, Part II

Part II of our series about Summer Internships in Germany! Don’t forget that today is the info session for interested students.

Internship flyer

In the summer of 2017 four of our German majors and minors lived and worked in Germany.  The students applied to internship programs that the Department of German and Russian facilitates each year.

The internships are three months long (Mid-May to Mid-August), well paid, and include work permits as well as insurance.

The summer internships are fantastic opportunities for students of German to work and live in a German-speaking environment, make new connections at international companies, experience work and culture first hand, and to learn new skills!

And, of course, students with international work experience are very marketable on the U.S. job market.

Our department is working with two organizations that provide summer internships in Germany:

  • German-American Exchange, Inc.

Internships with this group are geared toward students with a background in Business and STEM.  The internships are competitive and often, but not always, with bigger, international companies. 

  • Cultural Vistas

Internships with this group are geared toward students with a background in Humanities, Languages, and Arts. The internships are with medium-sized German companies.

 Stay tuned this month for more information and conversations about summer internships in Germany!

Here are the stories of our 2017 interns:

Part 2): Jessica Wu: ARAG Headquarters, Düsseldorf

My internship during Summer 2017 was with the ARAG Group at its headquarters in Düsseldorf, Germany. My job responsibilities were carrying out a company-wide installation of Office 365 and Microsoft Teams, along with my coworkers. I was also responsible for translating the Belgium website from Dutch to English. I absolutely loved my coworkers and the other intern that they hired. My company treated me very well, and I could go to them with any problems I had. They were very generous and paid for my travel within Germany, along with a beautiful and spacious flat all to myself in the middle of the city. I met a lot of people from around Europe, as ARAG is a multinational company. My coworkers in my department were mostly middle-aged German men, so my German improved a lot because many of them were not comfortable speaking English. They were very kind to me and would invite me to their house for dinner, so I got to become close with their families as well.

Düsseldorf is a great city. There are not that many young people and it can feel posh at times. However, it has one of the highest numbers of Japanese expats in the world, so as an Asian food-lover, I ate incredibly well. Outside of work and besides eating, I spent a lot of time outdoors. Düsseldorf is on the river, and my apartment was only a ten minute walk from the riverbank, so I enjoyed riding bikes and running along the river. I also traveled a lot around Europe and visited friends in other European cities.

Generally, I was impressed with the internship. The company was very advanced and I got an accurate taste of the corporate world, from coffee breaks, to sitting in on meetings, to having my own desk, to eating lunch at the company canteen with my coworkers and friends. I had a great time and would definitely recommend it to other people. It has definitely been beneficial for my future. I think that completing an internship is already an impressive feat in the eyes of many employers, and successfully completing an internship abroad in a different language and culture is even more impressive.

Dusseldorf

Düsseldorf am Rhein, Germany
Department Events · Travel Abroad · Uncategorized

Summer Internships in Germany, Part I

This week is Intern in Germany week! Dr. Wiggers is providing a series of posts about internship opportunities in Germany, and there will also be an info session on Wednesday for interested students:

Internship flyer

Summer Internships in Germany

In the summer of 2017 four of our German majors and minors lived and worked in Germany. The students applied to internship programs that the Department of German and Russian facilitates each year.

The internships are three months long (Mid-May to Mid-August), well paid, and include work permits as well as insurance.
The summer internships are fantastic opportunities for students of German to work and live in a German-speaking environment, make new connections at international companies, experience work and culture first hand, and to learn new skills!
And, of course, students with international work experience are very marketable on the U.S. job market.

Our department is working with two organizations that provide summer internships in Germany:
1) German-American Exchange, Inc.
Internships with this group are geared toward students with a background in Business and STEM. The internships are competitive and often, but not always, with bigger, international companies.

2) Cultural Vistas
Internships with this group are geared toward students with a background in Humanities, Languages, and Arts. The internships are with medium-sized German companies.

Stay tuned this month for more information and conversations about summer internships in Germany!

Here are the stories of our 2017 interns:
Part 1): David Boone: PriceWaterhouseCoopers, Frankfurt
When and Where: For the summer of 2017, I traveled to Frankfurt, Germany to work at PriceWaterhouseCoopers (PwC) for the whole summer.

What: I worked in PwC’s Advisory practice and specific dealt with Forensic Services. I worked at a large, international bank client almost all summer in their Financial Crime department working to combat money laundering, terrorist financing and sanctions circumvention. I was responsible for creating procedures for the bank, making PowerPoints and case studies and a little translation work from German to English.

Friends: I worked on a small team comprised of three people; two managers from Zurich and a senior consultant from Frankfurt. Aside from them, I made a friend at lunch named Alex Duma who became my best friend in Frankfurt. We traveled around and attended different festivals. I am visiting Germany again this June and when I fly back, he is coming to the states with me to spend two weeks. I made a friend for life!

Frankfurt: Frankfurt was a fantastic city! There was a great mixture of big city feel as well as country because of all of the parks. There was one area that was not the best (Bahnhofsviertel), but other than that I loved it. I would highly recommend.

Outside of Work: I was fortunate to travel almost every weekend and used this opportunity to go all over Germany and Europe. A few highlights were Paris, Vienna, Stuttgart, Munich, Berlin and of course the Nürburgring. Other than that, I went to many festivals and drank great German beer. Prost!

Internship Implications: The internship turned out to be one of the best experiences in college as well as my life. I wasn’t sure about consulting before my internship but afterwards, I knew it was for me and so I returned to the states and got a full-time consulting job in Charlotte. The job helped me grow so much personally and professionally as well as helped me develop a global mindset. I would highly recommend to anyone to take advantage of this internship opportunity.

PWC Frankfurt.png

PriceWaterhouseCoopers Office in Frankfurt, Germany
Travel Abroad · Uncategorized

Oh, the Places You’ll Go, Part II: Wake Forest University in Jena, Germany

This past summer Dr. Knight led a group of Wake Forest students on a summer session in Jena, Germany. Here’s what she has to say about it–and about why you should go too!

This summer, I spent Summer II in Jena, Germany with 5 students.  It was my first time in Jena, a small university city about half the size of Winston-Salem, situated near the southern border of what was once East Germany.  In short, we had an awesome time exploring the region’s history and culture with the help of our host families and our tireless guide, Wolfgang Bathe.  Here are my top 5 reasons to join the Jena program next summer:

1. Homestays.  We all stayed with local host families who were caring, quirky, and invaluable in creating an immersive experience.  Students’ language skills improved dramatically; by the end, several of them were even dreaming in German!  We also learned so much about East Germany from our families, all of whom had lived in the GDR before the fall of the Berlin Wall.

2. Excursions.  With Jena as our home base, we were an easy drive or train ride from destinations like the Wartburg – the castle where Martin Luther translated the New Testament into German – and Weimar, the town where Goethe and Schiller lived and worked.  We also spent four days exploring my favorite city, Berlin, including a tour of the Reichstag that ended at the top of its iconic glass cupola.

Berlin_Jena_Group

The group in Berlin3

3. Wolfgang.  Our guide throughout the month was Wolfgang Bathe, whose breadth and depth of knowledge (and walking speed) are unmatched.  He told such interesting stories as we toured historic sites that more than once, passersby stopped to listen in.  He also made sure we felt at home in Jena and arranged for a state-of-the-art classroom at the local Volkshochschule.

4. Jena.  Jena may seem small at first, but it has so much to offer: hiking in the beautiful hills that surround the city center, even re-tracing Luther’s footsteps on theLutherweg trail.  The world’s oldest operating planetarium.  Quirky shops and restaurants (my favorite was Kabuff, a sewing shop that also served coffee and sweets).  I never got bored.

5. Eis!  It was unusually hot for most of our time in Jena, but the city’s many ice cream cafes kept us cool(er).  We also indulged in some other new culinary vocab words: Radler.  Döner.  Soljanka.  Klöβe.  Currywurst.  The list goes on!

coffee_and_cake

See Dr. McAllister if you’re interested in joining us next summer!  You’ll receive credit for GER 208 – and so much more.

Gruss, Dr. Knight

Travel Abroad · Uncategorized

Oh, The Places You’ll Go! Study Abroad Options in the Former USSR

I know, I know–it’s barely September, and the fall semester has barely started, but it’s still not too early to start thinking about study abroad for next semester or next summer. The great news is that whether you want to work on your Russian (or another Eurasian language), take courses in a variety of other subjects, or land an internship, there are loads of options.

Lots of people will want to go to Russia, and there are plenty of programs that will take you to the popular destinations like St. Petersburg

St.-Petersburg-Wallpapers-HD

St. Petersburg is the most popular study abroad destination for American students

and Moscow,

Moscow

Moscow has all the advantages that a capital city has to offer

as well as somewhere farther from the beaten path, such as Vladimir

Vladimir

The provincial town of Vladimir still retains much of its medieval charm, and is a great choice for students wanting to experience the “real Russia.”

or Vladivostok.

Вечерний вид на Владивосток и бухт

The Pacific port town of Vladivostok is quite literally another side of Russia, one that few Western tourists see.

If you’d like to try someplace other than Russia, there are plenty of Russian-speaking schools and internship programs all over the former USSR, and most of these programs offer a variety of options in places such as the Baltic countries, the South Caucasus,

Georgia has seduced foreigners for centuries with the beauty of its nature and culture

and Central Asia.

Bishkek

Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan is becoming an increasingly popular option for American students.

Below are links to some of the biggest and most popular programs. For more information, you can also email Professor Clark at clarkep@wfu.edu, or follow our Facebook page which is updated regularly with new study abroad opportunities.

SRAS is a budget-friendly company that offers a wide variety of internships and language and culture programs all over Eurasia. As well as perennial favorites such as intensive Russian language programs, they also offer programs on Policy and Conflict in Post-Soviet Space, Russia and the Environment, Security and Society, and–for those of you thinking of what to do next summer–a summer program that splits its time between Havana and St. Petersburg.

American Councils is probably the most popular program for American students. Along with Russian as a Second Language programs, they offer courses aimed specifically at Russian heritage speakers. They also offer a variety of other Eurasian languages, and a cluster of programs in/on the Balkans. Internships are also available.

Bard Abroad offers advanced Russian language programs in St. Petersburg, and programs for speakers of any level in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan. Wake students have gone on both programs and loved them! Those interested should check and see if tuition discounts are available for Wake students.

CIEE is the oldest study abroad program to take American students to Russia, and focuses primarily on St. Petersburg, although it also has some programs available in Moscow as well. Another popular option, particularly for students who know they want to go to St. Petersburg.

Happy travels!

Department Events · Uncategorized

Congratulations on the New Academic Year! Happy Day of Knowledge!

Happy New School Year!

While the start of school might be greeted with doom and gloom in the US, it’s a major national holiday in Russia and a beautiful spectacle that the entire family participates in. School in Russia always starts on September 1 everywhere in the country, and the whole family walks with their schoolchild over to the school and watches as the school puts on parades and dances and gives speeches. The children starting their first year of school dress up particularly fancily, with the boys in little suits and the girls in skirts and huge white bows. Everyone brings in big bouquets and presents them to their teachers to celebrate the “Day of Knowledge,” one of the names for the holiday.

First bell

Then there is the ceremony of the “First Bell,” when one of the biggest boys carries one of the littlest girls as she rings a beribboned bell to herald in the new school year.

Ringing first bell

It’s a fun holiday for the whole family, and one that helps get little kids excited about starting school. So in celebration of it, several of the WFU Russian classes started off their academic year by watching this charming episode of the wildly popular cartoon “Masha and the Bear,” in which Misha the bear makes Masha a play “school” and teaches her how to read. You too could learn at least a few letters of the Russian alphabet by watching along!

С новым учебным годом, студенты!