German major selected for a unique learning opportunity in Minnesota

German major selected for a unique learning opportunity in Minnesota
Anastacia Maurer, a double major in German and History, recently returned from the University of Minnesota’s Graduate School Experience for Advanced Undergraduates in German Studies. She was selected as one of 13 participants from around the country and was Michigan’s lone representative.

Anastacia Maurer, a double major in German and History, recently returned from the University of Minnesota’s Graduate School Experience for Advanced Undergraduates in German Studies. She was selected as one of 13 participants from around the country and was Michigan’s lone representative.

The purpose of the workshop was to promote graduate study in German, with an eye to the future of German studies in the United States. It was designed to give talented undergraduates from around the country a taste of what graduate study has to offer. It also gave attendees the chance to network with like-minded students and discuss their future goals.
 

The experience was called “German Studies in the 21st Century: History, Text, Image.” While there, Maurer attended a series of graduate-level workshops and seminars in topics ranging from German studies, German-Jewish studies, German film studies, contemporary German literature and culture, environmental humanities and professional options within the field.

“One of my favorite sessions was presented entirely in German,” said Maurer. “That presentation gave us a feel for what to expect from classes at the graduate level. Overall, the experience allowed me to take a few days to focus completely on German, talk to professors, current grad students, and undergrads like myself, which really helped me to understand what I want do with my German language skills both now and after graduation.”

The experience was hosted by Minnesota’s Department of German, Scandinavian & Dutch and was funded by the Deutscher Akademischer Austauschdienst, the German Academic Exchange Service.

This program has solidified her interest in working toward a doctoral degree in Medieval History, focusing on Germany and Scandinavia.

Maurer credits this opportunity to assistant professor Anja Wieden, who teaches German in Oakland’s Department of Modern Languages and Literatures. It was Professor Wieden who found the opportunity and wrote Anastacia’s nomination letter.

“Professor Wieden cares about her students and her subject,” Maurer added. “Her enthusiasm is contagious and she makes us want to take more and more German classes.”

Beyond her academic endeavors, Maurer is also a competitive fencer and holds two jobs on campus, one as an undergraduate admissions ambassador and the other as a teaching assistant in the Honors College. She is originally from Chesterfield Township and was homeschooled.

Group of German studies majors who attended event
Anastacia, far left, was one of 13 students selected nationally to participate in the Graduate School Experience.