Before beginning the Germany program, participants take part in a pre-semester orientation and complete a four-week, one-credit, intensive language course. This gives students in the academic-year program the freedom to brush up on their German-language skills in another part of the country before settling in Germany's smallest city-state, Bremen, a harbor town on the Weser River with a population of more than a half-million people.
Bremen, a harbor town on the Weser River with a population of more than half-a-million people, is Germany's smallest city-state. With a history dating back more than 1,200 years, Bremen is remarkably adept at blending the traditional and the contemporary: "preserve the old, try the new" has long been a Bremen motto. The old city center still is surrounded by earthen ramparts and a moat, although the latter now serves as a public park. The city plays host to a number of industries familiar to Americans, including Airbus, Mercedes-Benz Kraft Foods, and Beck's beer.
University of Bremen
Dickinson's host university in Germany, the University of Bremen, was founded in 1971 and has been a model for German higher education ever since. During a recent German initiative to identify the country's best universities, the media dubbed the University of Bremen the "Marvel on the Weser," and Bremen was named among the top 10 institutions of higher learning in Germany. Hallmarks of a University of Bremen education include interdisciplinary study and research, research-based teaching projects and a pervasive focus on internationalization.
A great variety of course offerings are available at the University of Bremen, which has an enrollment of about 18,000 students.
By enrolling directly in the University of Bremen under the guidance of an academic director, participants, who must be suitably proficient in German, get the best of both worlds: the experience of studying in the German university system, which requires students to be more self-motivated and self-directed, and the type of faculty oversight that most American students are accustomed to receiving.
Program participants have numerous opportunities to engage with the university outside of the classroom and to immerse themselves in the local community. Many students play on university sports teams or join one of Bremen's many sports clubs. Others sing in choirs, join bands and participate in other new activities and established hobbies. The city of Bremen also serves as a hub for social life beyond the campus. Daily life in the city, coupled with academic excursions to other regions, gives students ample opportunity to experience German culture throughout the program. Since the Bremen program is very flexible, excursions can be arranged in various regisions in Germany and Europe, according to the students' specific interests or fields of study.
Students may spend a full academic year or the spring semester studying in Germany. All participants first take part in a pre-semester orientation and complete a four-week, one-credit, intensive language course. For academic-year participants, this gives students the freedom to brush up on their German language skills in another part of the country before settling in Bremen. Spring semester participants complete their language intensive course in Bremen. During the regular academic year, students are required to complete a one-semester core course relating to German area studies and, in addition, may take classes in any department or field within the bounds of their degree course scheme.
Classes are available in a wide range of disciplines, including German language and literature, fine arts, anthropology, business, economics, sociology, science, history, music, political science, cultural studies and religion.
Students who successfully complete the academic year in Bremen earn between eight and nine credits, depending upon their selected courses. Students who study in Bremen for the spring semester may earn up to five credits, if they successfully complete the pre-semester intensive language course.
Students are encouraged to pursue an internship during their time here. The academic director assists in finding appropriate opportunities, although placements are not guaranteed. Recently, students have interned at the Bremen Information Center for Human Rights and Development (BIZME), Center for Clinical Psychology and Rehabilitation (Uni Bremen), Bremen City Theatre, Adult Education Center, Institute for Intercultural and International Studies (InIIS).
Moreover, through our program's contacts with the Bremen United States Center and the Chamber of Commerce, internships with local big businesses may also be possible: Bremen is a city of aerospace and space technology, hosting companies like Airbus, OHB AG, and EADS. Bremen is also home to a number of other international corporations, such as Mercedes-Benz, Kraft Foods, Kellogg's, Jacobs Coffee, and Beck's beer. Other firms have branches here, e.g. Siemens (including Siemens Windpower), Commerzbank, and DLR. Available internship reports:
Kelsey Power '11 and Nicole Couturiaux '12
The program is supervised jointly by an academic director and a program coordinator. The academic director oversees contributing faculty, academic integration between the University of Bremen and the Carlisle campus and the internship component of the program. The program coordinator's responsibilities range from accommodation, student stipends, and orientation coordination to general management of the program's logistics.
Students will be accommodated at studetns' dormitories. Private-room rentals in Bremen are possible in exceptional cases and at a student's own initiative.
Dates Program Fee* Application Deadline
Academic Year mid Aug. to mid-July $53,410** Feb.15
Spring mid Feb. to mid-July $26,705 Sept. 15
*This is the program fee for 2011-2012; the program fee for 2012-2013 will correspond to on-campus tuition and fees and will be determined during spring 2012.
** Academic year students will receive a $3,000 credit towards their program fee to cover the expenses for their summer language courses in Germany prior to the semester at the University of Bremen.
Program Fees Include:
• tuition and fees
• room and board
• pre-departure and on-site orientations
• academic excursions
The program fee does not include primary health insurance, airfare, passport, visa, immunizations, optional travel, personal expenses, meals and housing during vacations, books or supplies.
Students must complete the equivalent of two years of college-level German and at least one additional course taught in German or have the approval of the German Department before studying abroad.
University of Bremen
Current Dickinson in Germany Blog
Past Dickinson in Germany Blog
For more information, contact:
Prof. Antje Pfannkuchen, On-Campus Coordinator
Department of German
P.O. Box 1773
Carlisle, PA 17013-2896
Phone: (717) 254-8151