Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Grant Christian (CSBSJU '16) Receives Military-Cultural Internship in Germany

Dear Students, Faculty and Friends, 

This summer I will be part of the CULP Mission Training Internship in Germany.  CULP is an acronym that stands for Cultural Understanding and Language Proficiency. It is a merit-based program available to all ROTC cadets in the nation. The purpose of this mission is to develop relations with foreign nations, broaden insights about foreign militaries and learn how they operate in comparison to the United States military as well as give the cadets a chance to practice their language in a professional setting.  From June 8th to July 8th this summer I will be working alongside and collaborating with the German Armed Forces, specifically with a young officer of similar rank, on various training missions and situation exercises in order to have a greater understanding and awareness of how the United States Military operates in relation to the rest of the world. I will be part of an American team consisting of other cadets from school all across the nation who were also awarded this trip. Transportation, meals, and housing expenses are all covered as a part of the program. The mission lasts approximately one month. This is a wonderful experience to practice your language and experience the culture in a very unique way that you would otherwise not have the opportunity to as a traveler/tourist.

To apply for this program you must be part of the ROTC program and you can talk to your cadre leader about it, they will have all the necessary information. Additionally, there are missions all around the world tailored to your specific language skillset. There are also English teaching programs in more under developed countries for those that do not have a second language. Do not miss out on this once in a lifetime opportunity! 

Grant Christian

Sunday, April 6, 2014

German Studies Seniors Present on Campus-Wide Scholarship and Creativity Day

On Thursday April 24, hundreds of CSB/SJU students gave major presentations on their senior projects.  The following gave their presentations in German:    

Deutschlands Kulturerbe: The Resiliency of the German Economy  (Honors Thesis Presentation) 
Austin J Eighan
Lisa Ohm, Advisor
This project aims at identifying the key components of Germany’s Kulturerbe, a type of cultural heritage that strengthens its ability to overcome economic crises. I examine how the political and economic measures that Germany uses to overcome financial crises and sustain economic growth result organically from the socio-cultural aspects of German society that help mold a national identity centered on balancing prosperity with social equality. The Kulturerbe is a socio-historical factor encompassing such elements as work ethic and frugality bred from adversity. Germany’s fundamental preparation for a sustainable plan for economic stability began with the nation’s unification over 140 years ago. Through my research, I uncover some of the major causes, outcomes, and methods used to shape the German economy from its unification until today and the role the Kulturerbe plays. The ultimate goal of my research is to determine the building blocks of a successful economy. By examining why an economy like Germany’s seems better suited to withstand crises than others, I conclude with a recommendation as to whether the German model is one from which struggling or developing markets can learn and upon which they can base future social, political, and economic policies.

The CSB/SJU All-Sky Camera
Daniel T Schmit
Environmental Studies, Physics
Wendy Sterba, Advisor

This project discusses the “Fireball” network of All-Sky cameras in Germany and their effective use in meteorite triangulation and compares it to current research involving the CSB/SJU All-Sky camera. Recent physics research at CSB/SJU has developed a method to calculate the altitude of meteorites observed over SJU. Traditionally meteorite triangulation has involved 3 or more observations. Because a network of cameras in Minnesota is not yet fully developed; it has been necessary to develop a 2 observer method of meteorite triangulation using the CSB/SJU and Morris All-Sky cameras. This paper presents this method and the development of the IDL computer program which uses this triangulation method to calculate the altitude of observed meteorites, along with an analysis of Germany’s Fireball network as a potential example for a future network of cameras in Minnesota that would more accurately and effectively track meteorite flight paths.

Per J Lundmark
Environmental Studies, Sustainability

Wendy Sterba, Advisor

In my time at St. John’s, my German major has provided balance to what would have been a totally science based curriculum. By combining the ideas of contemporary environmentalism and German texts from both ancient and modern sources, I have truly engaged the liberal arts. This presentation concerns my senior project, a portfolio combining a series of essays from my experiences in the CSB/ SJU German department which illustrate my development not only in the German language, but also the personal exploration of my major. Influences of CSB/ SJU will also be explored, in terms of, for example, the peculiar dualities of the culture that have frustrated me as well as taught me the importance of the omnipresent Benedictine Values. Finally my fascination with the German Romantic Movement has motivated me to look at my life, as well as the contemporary environmental movement, with a new perspective. My works from my German career are collected and will be accompanied by narration in order for all to share in the self-exploration and development.

Five Analyses of Goethe’s “Mignon”
Joseph W Miller
Andreas Kiryakakis and Mark Thamert, Adivsors

In my presentation I will be looking at five different analyses on the poem Mignon by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe. The analyses range from the psychoanalytical, the mythological, and the practical. I will then add my own analysis of the poem and justify my reasoning with the help of the analyses and my own interpretation. I hope by the end of the paper, those who do not have knowledge of this work will have a better understanding of it, know more about the context of the poem, and why scholars believe this poem to be relevant in German literature.