The worldwide Augustana College experience

Hi! My name is Sean Austin, and I am going into my senior year at Augustana College. I am a psychology and German major. At school, I am also a member of the Augustana Symphonic Band as a French horn player. I work as a both Stage Manager for events on campus and as a recording studio tech for the Music Department. During the fall, I will be participating in a foreign language program in Wittenberg, Germany. It looks to be both challenging and eye-opening so try to keep up!

The Return

My closing recommendations for anyone considering studying abroad (particularly to develop his/her foreign language ability):

1) Do it.

2) Stay with a host family if you can and learn everything that you can from them.

3) Travel alone or with someone you know will make the trip better. Anyone else can take away from the experience.

4) Don’t be apprehensive about speaking to people (specifically in Germany. They will help you).

5) Be open-minded, try everything, and revel in the idea that you could not see/taste/do those things anywhere else.

On the Way Out

Today is my last full day in Wittenberg.

Language Days

I’ve noticed in my own development of the German language that there are good days and there are bad days.

Things I Have Noticed

This is going to be a blog of observations I’ve made while in Germany.

Wernigerode- The 5k

In addition to the hikes, Michelle and I engaged in an impromptu registration and running of a seemingly large running event in Wernigerode, the town in which we were staying. Michelle and I only ran a 5k, but the experience was great. Right before the start, the Germans warmed up with dance motions demonstrated by [...]

Harz Mountains

Just yesterday I was hiking through the Harz mountains. Specifically, Michelle (fellow Augie student) and I negotiated trails to reach the summit of the highest peak in central Germany: der Brocken. It stands 1142 meters high and we couldn’t see any kind of view after around 850 meters. It was quite a climb and we [...]

Fussball and the Weekend

Fussball (or soccer, for those who might not know) is probably the single most popular sport in the world, and after 5 weeks in Germany, I have yet to play Fussball. How is this possible? I do not hold it against them, but my guest family somehow does not like Fussball. I had previously thought [...]

New (old) Family and the Marathon

So I took a trip to Berlin last weekend to visit and really meet my great uncle Guenter for the first time. Train tickets are expensive, but I got to Berlin for about 40 Euro, and I made it without any trouble.  My uncle and his girlfriend Henriette of 19 years picked me up promptly [...]

Weimar, Buchenwald, and a Host Family

I finally have some time to blog after a long internet drought. Germany has been great. I love the country itself. My uncle was great to meet in the airport. My apprehension was gone after meeting him. We’ve gone on a couple weekend trips, on to prague, one to Weimar. Weimar is the prettiest city [...]

Preparing for the Trip

Hi everyone and thanks for reading my inaugural blog. I just returned from a weekend trip to Augie to celebrate a roommate’s birthday and now everything is starting to sink in. Everyone there wished me luck on my trip and the weekend was mostly very pleasant (with the exception of taking the GRE early Saturday [...]