The academic year 2010-11 witnessed another drastic rise in enrolment numbers – this time almost a 20% increase compared to the previous year. 220 students completed our introductory language course GER 100Y alone, and well over 500 students took one or multiple courses at our department. At times when German programs are shrinking all over, this is a favorable trend.
We were also able to expand our summer program. In addition to two language courses, we also offered GER 150H “Introduction to German Culture: How German Is It?” Film screenings and an excursion to the local Goethe Institut completed readings and class discussions. In July and August, GER 354Y “Berlin: A Tale of More than Two Cities” took 16 students all the way to the German capital. The course combined intensive classroom sessions with regular excursions (to Turkish Kreuzberg, the Jewish Bavarian Quarter and the GDR Museum, among others) allowing participants to witness multiple aspects of Berlin first-hand. Student reactions were enthusiastic. Here are a few voices:
“It was an enriching and unique learning experience.” / “[E]xperiencing things we were studying … augmented the course content and made it come alive.” / “The learning experience was very intense.” / “Getting a chance to go out into Berlin and really explore our own interest made the final project fun … [it] will always be in my memory.”
The students returned with a better understanding of ‘things German’ and a renewed enthusiasm to continue their studies.