Our students have settled in very well in Germany, the country they will call home for the next 10 months. Our students are not only learning the German language in their summer language course, but their experience of living in a foreign country is becoming a deeper, lasting understanding through learning a bit about its history and culture.
Visiting historical sites can be a great way to learn and understand the culture and customs of the foreign country you are living in. Sheila Malina from International Relations batch 2015, (currently doing her research semester in Germany) has shared some pictures regarding her visit to Konzentrationslager Buchenwald (Buchenwald Concentration Camp), in Weimar, with her fellow students. Learning about the Holocaust in a history class in school is one thing, but actually seeing the place where it all happened is a great way to have a better and deeper understanding of the events that happened in the past.
Buchenwald concentration camp was a German Nazi concentration camp that was established on Ettersberg hill near Weimar, in July 1937. It was one of the first and the largest of the concentration camps on German soil. Prisoners from all over Europe and the Soviet Union— Jews, Poles and other Slavs, the mentally ill, those disabled from birth defects, religious and political prisoners, Roma and Sinti, Freemasons, Jehovah’s Witnesses (then called Bible Students), criminals, homosexuals, and prisoners of war all worked primarily as forced labor in local armaments factories.
One of the most important things is going to historical sites and hearing about the history, the language and the roots; because getting to know the country means you start to discover new things; you realize that there are so many things that might not have been mentioned in history books. We hope our students will have one of the best life experiences during their time in Germany and we hope they come back home with tons of knowledge, understanding, and maturity.