Meet the 2012-2013 Young Ambassadors

Find someone who studied where you want to go, who specializes in your field, or who comes from your home state or college—and ask him or her whatever you ever wanted to know about study or research in Germany!

To get to the Young Ambassadors' main page, click here.

Jump to an ambassador...
Stevie Bailey, German and Anthropology Hunter Banister, Engineering Science and German Studies Macie Basom, Mathematics Diane Berringer, Criminology & Criminal Justice, Germanic Studies Rebecca Brock, German Studies Jason Choe, Information Technology & Management Ian Clark, Psychology Joseph Cloward, International Relations, German Studies Yanalte De Haro, Studio Art, German Harris Engelmann, German, European Studies Heidi Flees, German Education Caren Garcia, Political Science, German Dorothee Goettert, Food Science, Animal Science Ashley Gyarmati, Bachelor of Fine Arts in Dance, Bachelor of Education Shelby Haas, German Zachary Haddad, Neuroscience, German Eric Henderson, International Relations, German Kristina Kalkstein, International Studies, German Jeanne-Renée Lorrain, Intermedia and Cyberarts Michelle Lucas, Geographic Information Sciences (GIS), Germanic Studies Lucy Ma, Biology Tyler Manning-Dahan, Electrical Engineering Alexander Nelson, Biology, German Kristin Newcomer, Cultural Anthropology Kyle Olson, Civil Engineering and Economics Noah Ottinger, English Literature, German Julia Pannewitz, German Isabelle Plessis, Political Science and International Relations Lindsey Pruden, Chemistry, German Rachel Rahn, Biology, German Meghan Reidy, History, German, Music Performance Stephanie Rempel, Political Studies, German Studies Morgan Robinson, Modern Foreign Languages: German & French Kaitlyn Roth, Biomedical Engineering Denisse Ruiz, Comparative Literature, German Studies Craig Rupp, History, German Rachel Schmidt, German Studies, Philosophy Cecilia Sebastian, Philosophy, German Adrienne Showman, Molecular Biology & Microbiology Jenna Troop, European Studies, German

Stevie Bailey

Home University: Northwestern University
Major: German and Anthropology, Science in Human Culture
Program/University in Germany: Universität Freiburg
E-Mail stevie.bailey.daad@gmail.com

Hallo! My name is Stevie Bailey, and I am a currently a senior at Northwestern University. Last fall I was blessed to spend a semester in Freiburg through a program called IES Abroad. By taking classes in the IES Language and Area studies program, I was able to meet great German friends, improve my German language skills, and experience a culture surprisingly different from my own. Living in Germany was one of the most terrifying and exciting adventures of my life. I was completely outside of my comfort zone in every imaginable way. I lived with five other young adults--three men and two women--who were all German, except one man who was an Italian exchange student. I commuted on the train or by bike every day to classes, cooked with ingredients I had never heard of before, and went to University lectures and church services where I could only understand forty percent (at first). From the classroom to my apartment to the supermarket in town, I was forced to speak German all day, every day. It was AWESOME. I had the opportunity to participate in many of the cultural activities in Freiburg such as going to theater productions, concerts, the opera, the Weihnachtsmarkt and even seeing the Pope—in person! Somewhere between Kaffee und Kuchen with friends and hiking to the medieval ruins on Schönberg, I fell in love with Germany and its people, culture, and of course food! Choosing to study in Freiburg was hands down the best decision I have made in my college career, and I encourage you to study abroad and experience it for yourself. I could never adequately describe all the amazing experiences that I had studying in Germany, but if you have any questions please email me and I will try my best. Tschüss!
Hunter Banister

Home University: Trinity University, Texas
Major: Engineering Science and German Studies
Minor: Mathematics
Program/University in Germany: CBYX for Young Professionals (PPP) - Köln and Bremen
E-Mail Banister@daad.org

Moin! My name is Hunter Banister and I am entering my senior year at Trinity University in San Antonio, Texas, majoring in Engineering Science, if all goes to plan German Studies, and minoring in Mathematics. I was a member of the 2010-2011 Congress Bundestag Youth Exchange for Young Professionals (PPP auf Deutsch). I had the opportunity to study at an intensive language center for two months in Köln, study for four months at the technical school Hochschule Bremen, and complete a five month internship with the global insulation firm Kaefer Isoliertechnik in Bremen. During this year I experienced a range of living situations, was immersed in not only the student but also professional life, was involved in sports groups and churches, took advantage of the nightlife, traveled as much as possible, and most importantly, experienced the culture of northern Germany, which is notably quite different than that of southern Germany. My hobbies are swimming, ultimate Frisbee, volleyball, tennis, Tischtennis, Risk (yes, the board game), long walks on the beach, home improvement projects, and discussing Harry Potter. If you have any questions about studying or working in Germany feel free to contact me. Tchüß!
Macie Basom

Home University: University of California, Santa Barbara
Major: Mathematics
Program/University in Germany: Technische Universität Berlin
E-Mail macie.basom.daad@gmail.com

Hallo! My name is Macie Basom and I am a bachelor's student at the University of California in Santa Barbara majoring in Mathematics with a double minor in German studies and Education. I just completed a year abroad in Berlin, Germany as a DAAD undergraduate scholarship holder. I participated in two German intensive language programs at Freie Universität Berlin before beginning my two semesters at the Technische Universität in Berlin. While at TU, I had the opportunity to study math as well as several philosophy and art history courses with fellow German students. I took a strong initiative to improve my German skills to fluency and I am proud to say that after one year, ich habe es geschafft! Beyond my studies, I enjoyed the fun and international environment of Berlin, while involving myself in various German cultural experiences. I also had the chance to travel throughout Germany and several other European countries. My experience abroad was truly everything I could have dreamed of and more! I am very excited and honored to help other students in creating their own memorable experience. If you have any questions or concerns about studying abroad in Germany or planning your extracurricular travels, feel free to contact me!
Diane Berringer

Home University: University of Maryland
Major: Criminology & Criminal Justice, Germanic Studies
Program/University in Germany: Freie Universität Berlin
E-Mail diane.berringer.daad@gmail.com

Hallo! My name is Diane Berringer and I am a senior studying Criminology & Criminal Justice, German, and Public Policy at the University of Maryland, College Park. I first visited Germany during the 2009 FIFA World Cup, and immediately fell in love with the country and its rich culture. Shortly after, I started studying the language and took advantage of the opportunity to spend a semester at the Freie Universität in Berlin, Germany. It didn't take long for Berlin to become my all-time favorite city in the world! It is a great place for a young person to live and study. On the weekends that I wasn’t taking advantage of the many activities that Berlin has to offer, I hopped on the bahn and traveled to other cities such as Dresden, Mannheim, Munich, Warsaw, and Gdansk. It is safe to say that studying and living in Germany was an unforgettable experience! I will always remember attending Oktoberfest, visiting various Christmas Markets, eating great food, meeting new friends, spending Christmas in the Black Forest, and attending professional soccer matches. I love sharing my experiences with others and would encourage anyone to study in Deutschland! Please feel free to contact me with any questions that you may have!
Rebecca Brock

Home University: University of Kentucky
Major: Biology and Chemistry
Minor: German Studies
Program/University in Germany: DAAD RISE - Technische Universität Braunschweig
E-Mail Brock@daad.org

Hi! My name’s Rebecca and I am an undergraduate at UK, majoring in Biology and Chemistry with a German Studies minor. I’ve been to Germany many times because of my family there, but last summer I was able to go through DAAD RISE and spend three months working in a biochemical research lab. It was also a chance for me to become more independent as I was away from my family. I loved the program since I was able to see how research laboratories are in Germany as well as what opportunities I could have if I decided to go to graduate school there. Aside from that, I also learned how the day to day life in modern Germany is without the “vacation” feel. I shopped for food, and clothes instead of souvenirs; I went to festivals and cook-outs instead of tours. I rode bikes and took trains, city buses, and street-cars instead of cars and tour buses. I made friends with people from Germany, England, France, Spain, Iran, Italy, and even Chile! Studying abroad isn’t just about seeing another country; it’s about living it! And while it may be a bit intimidating at first, the experience lasts you a life-time. If you have any concerns or questions about studying abroad, be they on what to expect or just curiosity, I’d be happy to answer.
Jason Choe

Home University: Illinois Institute of Technology
Major: Information Technology & Management
Program/University in Germany: RISE - Universität Offenburg
E-Mail jason.choe.daad@gmail.com

Guten Tag! My name is Jason, and at the end of my third year at Illinois Institute of Technology, I had the honor of being selected as a recipient of the DAAD RISE internship scholarship program. This was a summer program which allowed me to work and research for a PhD student in the University of Offenburg. Interestingly enough, I did research on 3D data translation for virtual reality environment using Java and XML for mobile technology. This was a great experience for me because mobile technology is a field of interest of mine, and to get hands-on experience in another country was invaluable for me. Offenburg is a small town located in the very south west corner and very close to the borders of France and Switzerland. I was a bit cautious before heading out on this adventure because first of all, I didn't speak any German and secondly I have never been to Europe. These concerns all became obsolete as soon as I landed in Germany. Almost everyone I met spoke some English and was very accommodating. Not only did I learn a lot from my internship, I traveled more than I expected, met a lot of great friends, and experienced new culture in many towns and countries. I highly recommend the opportunity that DAAD offers to anyone thinking about traveling abroad. It was quite an eye-opener and a life changing experience. I'm available for questions if you have any. Cheers!
Ian Clark

Home University: Northeastern University - Boston
Major: Psychology
Program/University in Germany: Leibniz University Hannover
E-Mail Clark@daad.org

I am pursuing my bachelor’s degree in psychology at Northeastern University in Boston, MA. In Germany, my host university was Leibniz University in Hannover, where I worked in the International Office for six months as part of Northeastern’s International Co-op program. My responsibilities included attending to the needs of Hannover’s international student population, translating, and working at university events. While in Hannover I also interpreted at a British-German film shoot, and in Reichenau on the Bodensee, I ministered at a German-Swiss wedding. I travelled extensively within Germany, but also to Switzerland and Denmark. I am currently working as a laboratory technician in the Intensive Physiological Monitoring unit at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, and I translate occasionally for an engineer in Burgdorf. My hobbies are physical fitness, reading, and tinkering with my old Ducati motorcycle. One of my fondest memories of Germany is waking up to the sound of ducks quacking in my dorm every morning! Because we were on a river, the inner courtyard of our dorm was home to a small family of ducks, ducklings and all.
Joseph Cloward

Home University: University of Pennsylvania
Major: International Relations, German Studies
Program/University in Germany: Freie Universität Berlin
E-Mail joseph.cloward.daad@gmail.com

Hi! I'm a senior at the University of Pennsylvania majoring in International Relations and German Studies. I just spent my junior year abroad in Berlin through the Berlin Consortium for German Studies thanks to the support of a DAAD Undergraduate Scholarship. I started studying German in 7th grade and first visited Germany as a month-long exchange student in Hamburg while in 10th grade. After that first experience, I knew I'd be coming back to study abroad in college (and hopefully for future research, study, or work). While studying in Berlin, I took classes at the Freie Universität and Humboldt Universität in subjects in both of my majors. I joined a university choir, which helped me get more involved on campus and provided an opportunity to perform several times in the Berliner Philharmonie. I also joined a local church congregation where I sang in the choir and taught Sunday School weekly for children ages 8 to 11. I also volunteered several times each week at a family center serving children from immigrant backgrounds and children from an in-house foster program, which helped give context to my senior thesis research on immigration and integration in Europe, while allowing me to become part of a community in Berlin. And any time I didn't have something else to do, I enjoyed everything else that Berlin and Germany have to offer – visiting castles and museums, frequenting the opera, and traveling throughout Germany and Europe (Switzerland, Austria, Czech Republic, Croatia, Bosnia, Serbia, Greece, Bulgaria, and Turkey). I loved my experience studying in Germany and would be happy to answer any questions about my experiences!
Yanalte De Haro

Home University: California State University, Long Beach
Major: Studio Art, German
Program/University in Germany: University of Tübingen, Staatliche Akademie der Bildenen Künste Stuttgart
E-Mail yanalte.deharo.daad@gmail.com

Hi! My name is Yanalte De Haro and I am a senior at California State University, Long Beach. I studied abroad for a year in Germany through the California State University International Program. Since I am pursuing a double-major in German Studies and Art, I studied German at the University of Tübingen for my first semester and then switched to the Stuttgart State Academy of Art, both of which are located in the Schwäbisch part of Germany. Thanks to the DAAD Undergraduate Scholarship, I was able to experience a wonderful year in Germany full of unforgettable moments. From making friends from all over the world to the delicious bakeries to going to Karneval in Cologne to getting both my appendix and wisdom teeth taken out and, of course, traveling around Europe, I have had experiences I will never forget during my year in Germany. Studying outside of the U.S. has been a very eye-opening experience, especially studying at the art academy in Stuttgart, where the method of teaching art was completely different compared to what I am used to at my home university. This method, which gives the artist more freedom, definitely helped me approach art differently and further my creativity. This past year has been such a rewarding experience and I encourage everyone to study abroad. I look forward to hearing from you with any questions you may have!
Harris Engelmann

Home University: Washington University in St. Louis
Major: German, European Studies
Program/University in Germany: Universität Tübingen, Goethe Institut Bonn
E-Mail harris.engelmann.daad@gmail.com

Servus! My name is Harris Engelmann and I am entering my senior year at Washington University in St. Louis, where I am majoring in German Literature and European Studies. I just returned from six months in Germany, including one month at the Goethe Institut in Bonn and the summer semester at Karl Eberhard Universität in Tübingen. I had the opportunity to study German language and history and the European political system and had an amazing time while doing so! Living and studying in a University town like Tübingen was a fully new experience for me, and I really enjoyed the opportunity to become part of the larger student community in a whole new setting. During my time in Germany I also got to travel throughout Western Europe, see some of my favorite American and German bands at the Southside music festival, and cheer on BVB Dortmund in the Bundesliga and the German Nationalelf during the European Soccer Championships. I expected to have a great time in Germany, but it is safe to say that my time in Tübingen exceeded all of my expectations, and then some. I look forward to encouraging even more people to take advantage of the amazing opportunity to study abroad in Germany!
Heidi Flees

Home University: University of Wisconsin - Stevens Point
Major: German Education, International Studies
Minor: Anthropology and Teaching English as a Second Language
Program/University in Germany: Philipps-Universität Marburg
E-Mail Flees@daad.org

Hallo! My name is Heidi and I am a Senior at the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point, USA. I am studying German Education as well as Anthropology and Teaching English as a Second Language. Germany became a large part of my life rather quickly when I was in High School. My first experience abroad was when I was sixteen; I went to Städtisches Ratsgymnasium in Gladbeck through the Congress-Bundestag Exchange Program. I lived with a host family and attended school for one year! Since then I’ve been able to go back twice, and most recently I studied at the Philipps-Universität in Marburg. My semester program focused on German Literature, Culture, Reading & Listening Understanding, and Speaking Ability. It was great to be re-immersed in the country that I have fallen in love with. The things I miss the most are the bakeries, the public transportation system, and sitting outside ALL THE TIME. Other things I enjoy include reading books, riding motorcycle, playing tennis and volleyball, traveling, photography, and tent camping. If you are interested in studying abroad or have any questions, please feel free to contact me. I’d love to hear from you and about your adventures & dreams!
Caren Garcia

Home University: University of Texas at Austin
Major: Political Science, German
Program/University in Germany: Albert-Ludwigs-Universität Freiburg
E-Mail caren.garcia.daad@gmail.com

Servus! I’m Caren and entering my senior year at the University of Texas at Austin, majoring in Political Science and German. I was incredibly fortunate to have studied at the Albert-Ludwigs Universität Freiburg, a great university located in the sunniest part of Germany! Prior to studying in Freiburg, I did a two month internship at a school in Darmstadt, Hessen. I assisted teaching English and Spanish classes, and it made for a fantastic experience and a great start to my year in Germany. While studying I was able to satiate my incredible desire to partake in many German celebrations and traditions such as the Oktoberfest, Kölner Karneval, Canstatter Wasen, Christmas markets, family get-togethers and much more were finally made into reality! Germany has a lot to offer in terms of culture, history and nature and does not disappoint. From the grandiose Alps to the majestic shores of the North Sea, there is something that will be sure to inspire you in your time in Germany. Freiburg itself is situated along the gorgeous Black Forest and is only less than an hour away from France and Switzerland, an ideal location for the joyful bicyclist that I am! I’ll be more than happy to help and encourage others to study abroad in Germany, just feel free to contact me!
Dorothee Goettert

Home University: Louisiana State University
Major: Food Science, Animal Science
Program/University in Germany: Rheinische Friedrich-Wilhelms-Universität Bonn
E-Mail dorothee.goettert.daad@gmail.com

Hallo! My name is Dorothee and I am an undergraduate at Louisiana State University, double majoring in Food Science and Animal Science with a minor in German. I’ve been to Germany many times visiting with my family, and this past year I received the opportunity to study abroad for two semesters at the Rheinische Friedrich-Wilhelms-Universität in Bonn. My year there gave me the chance to learn about everyday student life in Germany. Rather than me being chauffeured around by my family, I had to adjust to using public transportation and finding out things for myself, exploring and enjoying a culture and country I had mostly known as a tourist. Studying at a German university has sparked my interest in attending graduate school there. I made many new friends from people all over the world and received insight into more than just the German culture. At the beginning it may seem intimidating, getting used to living in a foreign country, but it truly is an experience you don’t want to miss out on. I look forward to sharing my studying abroad experiences with you and will be happy to answer any questions you may have. Tschüss.
Ashley Gyarmati

Home University: York University - Toronto, Canada
Major: Bachelor of Fine Arts in Dance, Bachelor of Education for the Intermediate/Senior Division in Dance, Biology, and International Education
Program/University in Germany: Pädagogische Hochschule Freiburg
E-Mail ashley.gyarmati.daad@gmail.com

Learning in a university setting traditionally takes place in big lecture halls listening professors relate their personal experiences to lecture material, followed by studying similar over priced textbooks. My exchange to Germany allowed me to see that there is only so much you can learn from a textbook, making it by far the most “educational” experience of my university career. In which, I learned about German customs and culture (and in turn was became more aware of my own Canadian culture), the German language, history, teaching, architecture, the arts, my family history and about myself. I spent the summer semester of 2011 at the Pädagogische Hoschule Freiburg, in Baden-Württemberg through the York University Education exchange. In Freiburg, I studied teaching English as a foreign language and bilingual teaching, as well as a took German language courses and a few fine arts courses. I had an opportunity to do a practicum placement in a grade 8 English class, where I was able to experience another school system and received constructive criticism, in the traditional form of "Germany Honesty" that has made me a much better teacher. Living in Germany has allowed me to experience what my life as a student would have been like had my parents and grandparents not immigrated from Germany to Canada. I was fortunate enough to travel to many wonderful cities in Germany (and its surrounding countries) which had only furthered my learning of German history and understanding of their culture. Prior to leaving for my exchange, my father gave me the advice "When in Rome [or Germany], do as the Romans [or Germans]." I definitely learnt the most about Germany, German culture, teaching in Germany, and the German language by living with German roommates, making friends with Germans (whom I can still say are some of my best friends) and trying to adapt to the new country I was living in, by having an open mind. My 2011 exchange, inspired me to go back to Germany during the summer of 2011 to teach at an English language camp in Bavaria and the Baltic Sea region, where I only continued to fall in love with the country and culture. I 100% recommend studying abroad Germany: a country full of history, culture and character!


Shelby Haas

Home University: University of Florida
Major: German, International Studies
Program/University in Germany: Universität Mannheim
E-Mail shelby.haas.daad@gmail.com

Hallo Alle! My name is Shelby Haas and I am beginning my junior year at the University of Florida with a current major of German. I intend to finish up my studies in Business Administration to receive a minor as well as achieve a degree in International Studies. Last year I spent two semesters at the University of Mannheim in Baden-Württemberg and really benefitted from the experience – in many respects. Not only do I wish to encourage students considering studying abroad in Germany, but I want to be available to answer or research any questions related to living abroad. Though I have German ancestry, I had no intention of studying German until high school when I had to choose between Spanish and German. Trying something new but wishing it was French, I joined and instantly caught on and wanted to know more about the culture and language! After returning from my year abroad, I realize that my dreams of visiting Germany were more than fulfilled; I actually lived there for an entire year and became conversationally fluent! I had many opportunities to travel within Europe and Germany and have fond memories of relaxing with my friends at the Neckarwiese (my beach substitute), hiking in the Black Forest and shopping/art gallery hopping in Frankfurt. Not only did my study abroad experience prepare me for my future career, but it has directed me towards a major in International Studies with a possible career position in Germany. I will continue to visit, as I see Germany as my second home and German as my comfortable second language. After the culture, language and economic classes I took there I hope to be able to answer your questions regarding any topic about life in Germany – feel free to contact me!
Zachary Haddad

Home University: University of Pittsburgh
Major: Neuroscience, German
Program/University in Germany: Universität Augsburg
E-Mail zachary.haddad.daad@gmail.com

Servus! My name is Zach Haddad and I’ll be graduating from the University of Pittsburgh with degrees in both German and Neuroscience this spring and will be applying to medical school shortly after. I’d consider myself an outdoorsy type and especially enjoy running, mountain biking, and hiking—this synched particularly well with the German lifestyle. I spent this past summer (3 months) studying at the University of Augsburg, one of Pitt’s partner universities, in southwest Bavaria. Having already taken German classes since middle school, I was able to challenge myself by enrolling in literature courses with native speakers. Between speaking Hochdeutsch in class, deciphering that famous Bayrisch accent in the day-to-day, and forging a mutually understandable Gerenglish with new international friends from around Europe and beyond, I would say that the summer provided a valuable linguistic experience that I will gladly share with others and, hopefully, convince them to pursue as well.
Eric Henderson

Home University: San Francisco State University
Major: International Relations, German
Program/University in Germany: Universität Heidelberg, Universität Tübingen
E-Mail eric.henderson.daad@gmail.com

Servus! My name is Eric Henderson, and I am an International Relations and German double major at San Francisco State University. I have recently completed a year study abroad program at the Universitäten Heidelberg and Tübingen. While packing a year of my life into a suitcase I could barely contain the excitement for my adventures ahead. After snowboarding in chest deep powder in Austria, never ending nights on the Reeperbahn in Hamburg and aimlessly walking the streets of Kreuzberg, Berlin, my life has changed forever. I now return home fluent in German, with numerous new friends around the world, and a new feeling of direction for my life. Studying abroad in Germany was the best decision I have ever made. In such few words it is not possible for me to explain the countless benefits of my decision. My only advice, take the opportunity and let life happen. What else are you going to do, stay home?
Kristina Kalkstein

Home University: Virginia Tech
Major: International Studies, German
Program/University in Germany: Technische Universität Darmstadt
E-Mail kristina.kalkstein.daad@gmail.com

Hallo! My name is Kristina Kalkstein and I’m a senior at Virginia Tech studying International Studies and German. I just got back from studying abroad in Darmstadt, Germany at the Technische Universität Darmstadt during the previous spring semester. There I continued studies in both of my majors in German and in English. German has been always one of my interests, considering I have been taking German classes since 7th grade and spent a summer as an Au Pair near Nürnberg. However studying abroad for 5 months made me fall in love with Germany all over again! I was privileged enough to travel all over Germany and Europe on the weekends and was of course in awe with the history, picture perfect countryside, and culture! I made friends with a lot of international students, mainly from Europe, but also many German students as well. Darmstadt was perfectly located to visit so many close surrounding cities like Mainz, Wiesbaden, the Rhein River area, Munich, Stuttgart, Cologne, the list goes on and on! I was also grateful to be in Germany during the 2012 Euro Cup, and boy the German pride here was crazy! My study abroad experience is one I will never forget, as it has reshaped my outlook on Europe and the world.
Jeanne-Renée Lorrain

Home University: Concordia University - Montréal, Canada
Major: Intermedia and Cyberarts
Program/University in Germany: Universität Bremen
E-Mail Lorrain@daad.org

I stayed in Germany from the end of September to the end of July and studied in Bremen through the partner university international exchange program. I attended the University and the Hochschule fur Kunst of Bremen. I chose to go to Germany because I had already learned some German in my childhood. It was out of curiosity for a culture I didn't know and a language I spoke that I decided to go back to this land. It is now one of the most important learning experiences of my life. Making this exchange has given me the opportunity to discover other points of view and ways to work. Not only have I discovered a culture, I have also been in touch with a totally different way to teach, view school and be a student. It has enlarged my vision of studying and of what a University can offer as a cultural Institution. During my stay I had the chance to participate in the Aufgeschlossen project in partnership with Kunsthalle Bremen, which is the local Fine Arts Museum. I won one of the three prizes offered by the Museum and some of my videos are now being used everywhere in Bremen to advertise the reopening of the KunsthalleBremen. An exchange is enriching in so many ways, having the chance to get in touch with different cultures and historic backgrounds was a very important aspect of my experience. You can easily travel and get in touch with so many people. During my stay in Europe I was able to also work for the Kunstenfestivaldesartsin Brussels, which has given me some priceless working experience. I feel like no matter how old you are or at what point in your life you are at, an exchange will definitely open your eyes to some new landscapes and make you grow on a personal level.
Michelle Lucas

Home University: University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Major: Geographic Information Sciences (GIS), Germanic Studies
Program/University in Germany: Universität Mannheim
E-Mail michelle.vlucas.daad@gmail.com

Grüß Gott! My name is Michelle V. Lucas and I am currently entering my senior year at the University of North Carolina – Chapel Hill as a German Studies and Geo Information Sciences double major. Last fall I had the most amazing opportunity to study abroad at Universität Mannheim in the Baden-Württemberg region of Germany. As a child I lived on an army base in Germany and have always had the desire to return and experience the language and culture on my own. After a semester of living in Germany, I had learned and understood more about Germany’s culture and the way of life than could ever be taught in a classroom back in the States. The cities are gorgeous, welcoming, and full of sights to see. Everywhere you turn there is a historical story to hear. And the public transportation systems make everything incredibly simple to reach. For me the best part was having the opportunity to race in the BMW Frankfurt Marathon which connected me with the people in the running community that I shared common interests with. Immediately I felt a part of the German community and fell in love with the people and everyday life. Study abroad is not just visiting and touring another country; it’s living it, experiencing all aspects, and becoming a part of the society for your time there. I would encourage any student to take advantage of the opportunities available for you and welcome any questions or thoughts you may have about your future adventures!
Lucy Ma

Home University: Duke University
Major: Biology
Program/University in Germany: RISE - Albrecht-Kossel-Institute for Neuroregeneration
E-Mail lucy.ma.daad@gmail.com

Hallo, hallo! My name is Lucy Ma. I am a junior, currently studying Biology at Duke University. I spent three months in Germany as a DAAD RISE (Research and Internships in Science and Engineering) intern. My weekdays were dedicated to research at the Albrecht-Kossel Institute for Neuro-biology but my weekends were spent roaming the country. Hopping on and off the Deutschbahn, I found myself in Munich, Potsdam, Lübeck and Schwerin. I hiked in Heidelberg, toured Neuschwanstein, and ate too much bread and potatoes. Needless to say, my experience in Germany not only honed my technical lab skills but also enhanced my planning and networking skills. I had an utterly incredible time and hope that you will also consider doing an exchange program in Germany; I would be more than happy to answer any questions and assist you in any way that I can!
Tyler Manning-Dahan

Home University: McGill University
Major: Electrical Engineering
Program/University in Germany: RISE - Technische Universität Dortmund
E-Mail tyler.manningdahan.daad@gmail.com

Hi! My name is Tyler Manning-Dahan and I am majoring in Electrical Engineering at McGill University. Last summer I had the opportunity to complete an engineering internship at the Technische Universität Dortmund, which is a university in Dortmund in the North Rhine-Westphalia region. I worked alongside German students in a great team building atmosphere to accomplish our research goals. I also lived in an international student housing complex with students from every corner of the globe including Poland, Russia, Argentina, China, and Scotland, to name a few. Learning from the German culture as well as many other different cultures proved to be more rewarding than I could ever have anticipated. I also traveled every chance I had and visited many of the cities in Germany as well as the many countries surrounding Germany. There is so much history and a rich tapestry of world culture to be found in Germany and I recommend the experience to everyone. I would love to share more of my experiences with anyone who is interested. Tschüss!
Alexander Nelson

Home University: Middlebury College
Major: Biology, German
Program/University in Germany: Johannes Gutenberg-Universität Mainz
E-Mail alexander.nelson.daad@gmail.com

Hallo! I'm Alec Nelson and I am a Senior at Middlebury College in Vermont. I am studying both German and Biology, and spent the fall of 2011 studying in Mainz at the Johannes-Gutenberg Universität, through the Middlebury College Study Abroad Program. There I studied German culture and history, and took particular interest in cultural interactions and use of language. I was thrilled by my time in Mainz, as I was able to interact with many German and international students, improve and deepen my understanding of the German language, and gain a fascinating new perspective on international societies. I had the opportunity to grow as a student, individual, and citizen of the world, and discover the intricate and fascinating German culture. From history, language, music, science, and the arts, I experienced many facets of the German people and made many friends along the way! I am excited to meet fellow student of German and prospective study-abroaders and share my experiences and knowledge from my time in Deutschland!
Kristin Newcomer

Home University: Rutgers University
Major: Cultural Anthropology
Program/University in Germany: Universität Konstanz
E-Mail kristin.newcomer.daad@gmail.com

Servus! My name is Kristin Newcomer, and I have only very recently returned from a year abroad studying at Konstanz University in Baden-Wuerttemberg, Germany. I am currently a senior at Rutgers University majoring in Cultural Anthropology with a double minor in both German and Spanish languages. Although I was at first a bit anxious at the prospect of completing an entire year’s worth of major-related courses in German, Konstanz’s incredible immersion programs and infinitely helpful International Office assured that I was placed in classes that suited my requirements and guaranteed that I would not fall behind in my graduation schedule. I left the United States in September 2011 an apprehensive college junior with questionable proficiency in German, and returned in July 2012 as an independent, confident, culturally-enriched student with markedly-improved German-speaking skills. During Konstanz University’s one-month Spring academic hiatus, I eagerly jumped at an opportunity to explore various Eastern European countries with a few of my new friends I had met through the International Student events. I continue to look back on this experience with extreme fondness, as it took several students who had previously been complete strangers to one another and brought them together as good friends through the mutual exploration of other walks of life. It was such a privilege to have the opportunity to discover Germany through my new role as a resident of Konstanz, and also to discover Germany through the eyes of my new friends, all from numerous backgrounds. One of my favorite activities while overseas included getting to know the café culture of various German cities and towns; many students convene in coffee shops in between classes, and it was such a pleasure to become familiar with this amazing sub-culture! Studying in Germany for such a long period of time has provided me not only vastly-bettered German speaking abilities and incredible insight into southern German life, but also newfound sense of self and an unrelenting wanderlust that will inspire me for the rest of my life! If you have any questions concerning studying abroad in Germany, please do not hesitate to contact me!
Kyle Olson

Home University: University of Oklahoma
Major: Civil Engineering and Economics
Minor: International Studies and German
Program/University in Germany: DAAD Undergraduate Scholarship - University of Stuttgart
E-Mail Olson@daad.org

My name is Kyle Olson, and I participated in an 11 month undergraduate exchange program at the University of Stuttgart during the 2010/2011 academic year with the support of a DAAD Undergraduate Scholarship. I study Civil Engineering and Economics at the University of Oklahoma with minors in International Studies and German, and during my time in Stuttgart I was able to take a wide variety of German-taught technical, cultural, and language courses, as well as make life-long contacts with exceptional students from all over the world. Through its many renowned international English-taught technical masters programs, the University of Stuttgart attracts a massive pool of talented students, providing a rich cultural and professional environment for anyone hoping to gain exposure abroad, even to places outside of Germany and for people who do not yet have excellent German language skills. From such an international hub, I was able to do more than just travel around Europe – I was able to have my fellow international friends give me a native’s perspective to many historical European cities. Because of my exposure to these great technical programs during my exchange year, I plan to study full-time in Stuttgart or another technical school in Germany for an international graduate degree. I would highly recommend anyone, especially technical students, to take advantage of such a unique opportunity to broaden their personal or professional horizons by studying in Germany.
Noah Ottinger

Home University: University of Kansas
Major: English Literature, German
Program/University in Germany: Rheinische Friedrich-Wilhelms-Universität Bonn
E-Mail noah.ottinger.daad@gmail.com

Hallo! My name is Noah Ottinger and I study English and German at the University of Kansas. For the past 6 months, I have been studying at the University of Bonn in order to gain a higher proficiency in the language. Through German, I have formed strong friendships with people from all over the world, friendships that will last for many years to come. My time here in the Rhineland has opened my eyes to a country that offers so much in literature, language, and history. I am still completely in awe of the massive size of the Kölner Dom, no matter how many times I see it. Studying in Germany has been one of the most rewarding experiences of my life. I was never once in need of any sort of museum, nature hike, or festival. If you have any questions about studying in Germany, feel free to ask!
Julia Pannewitz

Home University: University of Mary Washington
Major: German
Program/University in Germany: Universität Trier
E-Mail julia.pannewitz.daad@gmail.com

Hallo! My name is Julia Pannewitz, and I am from Yorktown, Virginia. I am entering my senior year at the University of Mary Washington in Fredericksburg, Virginia, where I study German, Linguistics, and Business. I just returned from a full academic year abroad at the Universitaet Trier. While at Uni Trier, I was able to get credit for courses from all three of my fields of study. I loved living in Trier for so many reasons. For example, my window looked out over the beautiful Moselle River and some of Trier's well-known vineyards. Also, I was able to take a 45-minute train ride to Luxembourg, where I could test out my newly-acquired Luxembourgish skills. Being able to take such a unique course at Uni Trier was a great opportunity for me as a Linguistics student. This past year was actually my second time living abroad in Germany, as I had received a CBYX scholarship when I was 18 years old. I know very well why Germany is such a great place to study, live, and travel as a young adult--just ask me about it!
Isabelle Plessis

Home University: University of British Columbia - Vancouver, Canada
Major: Political Science and International Relations
Program/University in Germany: Ludwig-Maximilian Universität Muenchen
E-Mail isabelle.plessis.daad@gmail.com

Grüß Gott! My name is Isabelle Plessis, and I am a fourth year Political Science and International Relations double major at the University of British Columbia in beautiful Vancouver, Canada. Last year I was lucky enough to spend a year abroad at the Ludwig-Maximilian Universität, which is just a complicated sounding name for the University of Munich… I chose Munich because I wanted to learn German and about German culture in a bigger city that would still offer a ‘traditional’ setting. I absolutely fell in love with Munich, with pretzels, with the European lifestyle, and with Germany! In Munich studied political science and history, completed an internship at an environmental humanities think tank, worked as a research assistant on European integration research project, and took private voice lessons with a singer of the Bavarian State Opera. On top of these exciting opportunities, I also snowboarded in the Alps, went to music festivals, travelled throughout Germany and western Europe, met amazing people, and took advantage of Munich’s unreal traditions, heritage, and of course, beer culture. In this year I learned so much about myself, Germany, and managed to improve my German, and I am happy to help you out with any questions or concerns you might have about studying abroad!
Lindsey Pruden

Home University: Brigham Young University-Idaho
Major: Chemistry, German
Program/University in Germany: Universität Paderborn
E-Mail lindsey.pruden.daad@gmail.com

Hello! My name is Lindsey Pruden and I am a senior at Brigham Young University-Idaho majoring in chemistry and German. In the summer of 2012, I completed an internship through the DAAD-RISE Program at the University of Paderborn. I absolutely loved my experience in Germany and at the university where I worked! The people in my research group were very nice and helpful. They were like a small family and I felt so grateful that I could be part of their family for the two months I lived in Paderborn. In my research group, I had the opportunity to speak a lot of German and to learn different things in chemistry that I hadn’t yet come across in my undergraduate work. Members of my research group often got together and hung out. They always invited me and I enjoyed my time getting to know them and learn more about their country and culture. I also learned a lot about the German National Football (Soccer) team. Often, we would watch the football games as Germany played in the European Cup. I bought a semester ticket that allowed me to travel throughout the whole German state of Nordrhein-Westfalen. It was an amazing experience! I had the opportunity to visit many cities and learn new things. I really enjoyed visiting the many churches and learning about their history. Living in Germany was an amazing experience, one that I hope to have again. I would be more than happy to answer any questions or concerns you might have about living or studying in Germany. Please feel free to contact me.
Rachel Rahn

Home University: Valparaiso University
Major: Biology, German
Program/University in Germany: Universität Tübingen
E-Mail rachel.rahn.daad@gmail.com

Hello! My name is Rachel Rahn, and I studied for the past year at Eberhard Karls Universität in Tübingen, a university city in Baden-Württemberg. Spending my junior year at the university there has definitely been the highlight of my college experience! My courses there were challenging and exciting, as I took German literature and language courses alongside neuroscience and biology courses taught through the internationally-known natural science wing there. Beyond that, my time in Germany allowed me to immerse myself in Swabian culture (going to Volksfest in Stuttgart and the chocolate and Christmas markets in Tübingen were highlights!) as well as making friends with my German classmates and enjoying the student social scene. It was great to be able to travel, both in Germany (Berlin, Munich, and Stuttgart to name a few) as well as greater Europe, but it was always great to return "home" to Tübingen. Already, I'm looking forward to going back and love to talk about the experience and Germany in general!
Meghan Reidy

Home University: Ball State University
Major: History, German, Music Performance
Program/University in Germany: Westfälische Wilhelms-Universität Münster
E-Mail meghan.reidy.daad@gmail.com

Hallo! My name is Meghan Reidy, and I am an undergraduate studying German, Music Performance, and History at Ball State University in Muncie, Indiana. Last year, I had the wonderful opportunity to participate in a one-to-one student exchange with the Westfälische Wilhelms-Universität in Münster, Nordrhein-Westfalen. With this exchange, I took classes in German, history, religion, and Spanish and also held a part-time job at a library. I had studied German in high school and college, but compared to what I learned in school, my German improved by leaps and bounds just in the short time I was there. My experience has shaped me so much: when I came to Münster, German was something I used at most three hours a week in class, I had only ever lived at home or in a dorm, and I knew no one in the city. Over the course of the year, however, I became comfortable speaking German in every situation, signed my first lease, and made lifelong friends, both Germans and international students. Although I will admit the thought of moving away where I didn't know anyone and everyone speaks a different language was terrifying at first, this year abroad is easily the best decision I have ever made. I mean, where else can you listen to a Beethoven concert in Beethoven's house? Germany is a great study abroad option because of the depth of cultural and academic significance in the country. Germany is, after all, the land of Beethoven and Schumann, of Max Planck and Werner Heisenberg, of Goethe and Schiller. Germany is a great country in which to study, and I hope more people will have the opportunity to experience that for themselves. To that end, I am happy to answer any questions you might have. Just send me an email!
Stephanie Rempel

Home University: University of Winnipeg
Major: Political Studies, German Studies
Program/University in Germany: Freie Universität Berlin
E-Mail stephanie.rempel.daad@gmail.com

My name is Stephanie Rempel and I study Political Science and German at the University of Winnipeg. Recently during the 2011-2012 academic year, I lived and studied in Berlin at the Freie Universität Berlin with the assistance of a DAAD Undergraduate Scholarship. Before the start of the semester in October 2011 I took advantage of the ‘Vorkurs’ program. This 6-week orientation class provided me not only with the extra language boost I needed but also was a great way to meet new international students and friends and learn important historical and cultural aspects of my new home. Once the German academic year started, I was able to take more language classes and German history classes designed for international students in addition to the English and German language politics classes I took at the Otto-Suhr Institut and North-America Institut at the FUB. During my year abroad I fell in love with Berlin much more than I expected. Berlin is not only a unique capital city within Europe but also unique within Germany. It boasts great opportunities between weekend trips in the former eastern bloc, meeting new people or shopping at the Turkish and Vietnamese markets. Berlin is also home to more ballet, theater, opera companies and museums than one can count- and then you realize how many interesting and diverse neighborhoods the city has. Berlin really does have something for everyone. I have had such a great year there and I know I will go back but before I do, let me help you get there too. Please feel free to contact me with any questions and concerns about Berlin or studying in Germany. I would love to help!
Morgan Robinson

Home University: James Madison University
Major: Modern Foreign Languages: German & French
Program/University in Germany: Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München
E-Mail morgan.robinson.daad@gmail.com

Servus! My name is Morgan Robinson and I am a senior at James Madison University, majoring in Modern Foreign Languages (German and French). I was fortunate enough to spend that last ten months as a DAAD Undergraduate Scholar at Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität in Munich, Germany and I lost my heart in Bavaria. It was an incredible experience. Over this past year, I've learned so much, met many great friends, gained work experience and travelled extensively. I look forward to sharing my experience and tips with you!

Kaitlyn Roth

Home University: University of Iowa
Major: Biomedical Engineering
Program/University in Germany: TU Dortmund
E-Mail kaitlyn.roth.daad@gmail.com

Hi my name is Kaitlyn Roth and I am currently a junior at the University of Iowa, majoring in biomedical engineering and minoring in German. I attended TU Dortmund during Summer Semester 2012 where I was able to take classes for my major, including a physiology internship, and I was able to finish my minor in German. While I was living in Dortmund, Germany I was able to experience the most populated area of Germany and a non-tourist area. I also got the chance to meet many students, travel, and have the best five months of my life. The best part of this experience for me was becoming friends with people from all over the world, while experiencing what life is like in a completely different country. I would strongly encourage anyone to pursue studying abroad, because it is life changing. I am more than happy to answer any questions or share my experience with you! I encourage you, if you are even considering spending time abroad, to go for it and take advantage of this opportunity.
Denisse Ruiz

Home University: Wellesley College
Major: Comparative Literature, German Studies
Program/University in Germany: Freie Universität Berlin
E-Mail denisse.ruiz.daad@gmail.com

Hey! I’m Denisse, and I’m a Comparative Literature and German Studies double major at Wellesley College in Boston, MA. I’m originally from Los Angeles, CA, but I decided to travel to the other coast for a new experience. Similarly, I decided to study abroad my junior year at the Freie Universität in Berlin for a full year. Taking that 14-hour flight from California to Germany was the best choice I could have made. I highly recommend everyone study a year, a semester, or even a summer abroad since the experiences and insights you gain in such a short amount of time are invaluable. I was enrolled at the University and took courses in German with other German students, which intimidated me at first. But the rigorous academics helped me improve my language skills, and I’m proud of myself for having mastered classes in a foreign language. Aside from my academics, I interned at a publishing firm in Berlin, which allowed me to interact with the German professional world. However, Berlin was not just about learning, but also about interacting with a foreign culture and integrating myself into a great social scene. Germany has many opportunities to offer students of different walks of life, and time spent in Germany can only benefit you. Even though I’m back in the US, I will always refer to Berlin as a home. If you have any questions about studying in Germany, please feel free to contact me. I’m more than delighted to help you start your journey!
Craig Rupp

Home University: University of Nebraska, Lincoln
Major: History, German
Program/University in Germany: Deutschland Language Institute
E-Mail craig.rupp.daad@gmail.com

I am a senior History and German major at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. I have always been intrigued by history, particularly German history, but the opportunity to learn the language first came to me as a freshman in college. After a few short semesters of German, I traveled to Berlin to study both the language and history of Germany at a language institute. There I stood on much of the same ground as the history I had just learned about, which was certainly my favorite aspect of living in Berlin. After returning home I continued to advocate studying in Germany by founding a student German club. This coming year I plan to do undergraduate research about Germans in Nebraska and organize some exciting events for studying abroad in Germany!

Rachel Schmidt

Home University: Mount Holyoke College
Major: German Studies, Philosophy
Program/University in Germany: Universität Leipzig
E-Mail rachel.schmidt.daad@gmail.com

Hallo! My name is Rachel Schmidt and I am a senior at Mount Holyoke College majoring in German studies and philosophy. I started taking German in the spring semester of my freshman year and liked it so much that I declared it as a second major. I just got back from 11 months of study abroad at the Universität Leipzig in the former East Germany where I took courses directly at the university in philosophy, cultural studies, linguistics, and teaching German as a foreign language. Between the support of the international office and the friendliness of the German students I felt welcomed from day one. I shared an apartment with German students and made great friends with both German and international students from all over Europe. I was able to travel around Germany, including Berlin, Hamburg, Dresden, and Lübeck, as well as to a total of nine countries throughout Europe, including Hungary and Italy. I had an amazing year and recommend study abroad in Germany (especially Leipzig!) to all who are interested! Please don’t hesitate to contact me – I look forward to answering your questions and sharing my experience!
Cecilia Sebastian

Home University: Johns Hopkins University
Major: Philosophy, German
Program/University in Germany: Freie Universität Berlin
E-Mail cecilia.sebastian.daad@gmail.com

Hello! My name is Cecilia Sebastian, and I am a Philosophy and German Major at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, Maryland. I spent my junior year studying at the Freie Universität with the Berlin Consortium of Global Studies (BCGS) exchange program. There, I had the chance to meet with and take classes from brilliant professors, visit archives and attend conferences at universities throughout Germany. Aside from academics, I began working for the Berlin-based translation company Samson & Fritaud Text, where I write translations and subtitle films. I also found the time to pursue my own interests, such as running, opera and art, in the country’s leading metropolis. Studying abroad in Berlin was a tremendous experience, through which I gained a certain critical and social awareness that has allowed me to grow as an academic and an individual. I believe other young Americans would value and benefit from similar experiences of self-growth and cultural appreciation and look forward to helping out those who are interested.
Adrienne Showman

Home University: University of Central Florida
Major: Molecular Biology & Microbiology
Program/University in Germany: Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin
E-Mail adrienne.showman.daad@gmail.com

Hallo! My name is Adrienne Showman. I am a senior at the University of Central Florida, pursuing my bachelor’s degree in Molecular Biology and Microbiology. I was awarded a scholarship to complete a research internship in Berlin, Germany through the RISE: Research Internships in Science and Engineering. The opportunity to not only be able to live abroad for the summer but also gain valuable experience in the science research community was certainly incredible. Having always been fascinated by other cultures than my own, I hoped to have the chance to be able to study abroad during my college career. However, as a student in the Life Sciences it can be tricky to find time to take a break from classes and labs. The RISE Program was the perfect fit for me; not only was I able to gain more hands-on experience at the lab bench, but I was also able to immerse myself in the German culture, beyond a week-long trip. Being able to experience day to day life in the city is something that I fell in love with, from visiting parks and bakeries to weekend getaways in Potsdam and other suburbs. While I gained a new appreciation for some of the conveniences Americans have that Germans don’t, I fell in love with the people I met and the places I went, and look forward to returning. I’m happy to address any questions, comments or concerns about studying in Germany, especially in relation to science and technology.
Jenna Troop

Home University: Amherst College
Major: European Studies, German
Program/University in Germany: Georg-August-Universität Göttingen
E-Mail jenna.troop.daad@gmail.com

Hallo! My name is Jenna Troop and I’m a senior at Amherst College, where I study European studies and German. I just got home from a semester at the University of Göttingen where I had the opportunity to start the semester off with an intensive German Language course run through the university, before spending the semester studying history. I had a great time improving my German and meeting students from Germany and around the world. Göttingen truly was the perfect place in which to spend a semester. From playing tennis to getting involved in dorm life, I got to meet wonderful people and experience a fabulous new culture. I enjoyed the opportunity to study, learn, and travel around Lower-Saxony, Germany, and the rest of Europe and I look forward to the opportunity to share my experiences with you!