2019 Campus Campaign - Wunderbar Together

In the 2019 “Wunderbar Together” campus weeks at the University of St. Thomas, we will investigate factors and topics that demonstrate the German American friendship: united through historical-cultural events and shared values. We will discuss how this partnership has developed over time – from “Ich bin ein Berliner” to “America First” – and how it might be tested more than ever before due to policies and practices on both sides of the Atlantic such as those concerning the environment or economic trade deals and tariffs: the NATO, the Seidenstraße 2.0 (Chinese Belt and Road), Nord Stream, the Iran nuclear deal, or the America First-approach.

During the campus weeks, students will learn more about the Transatlantic Partnership.  Taking advantage of the university’s location in the heart of the Twin Cities, we will be able to invite speakers of the German-American business world and also visit German companies.

An in-depth description of the 2019 campus campaign and its events can be found below.

To better understand the present, we will remember the past; specifically the 30th anniversary of the Fall of the Berlin Wall. The Fall of the Wall was a major turning point that affected Germany, Europe and the world. It created a new Europe and Germany. In our campus weeks we look into factors that led to the Fall of the Wall emphasizing political, social and cultural events that brought about the revolution. We engage students by relating the Fall of the Wall events to their own lives. The Berlin Wall was a tangible barrier in Germany and its fall is a symbol of freedom and a peaceful revolution. We hope to not only educate students about the history and America’s role in the Fall of the Wall, but also challenge them to consider the barriers and biases they face today and how they can deconstruct them.

In the current political environment, more emphasis is placed on historic events to understand the present that shape the future of a nation by investigating cultural, socio-political and historical phenomena. As teachers, we need to ensure that our curricula and extracurricular activities like the German Campus Weeks fulfill the Modern Language Association’s mandate to develop historical proficiency in addition to cross-cultural and linguistic proficiencies. Both topics mentioned above are embedded in the university’s strategic plan, the Education for the Future (EFF), and our mission to educate students to be morally responsible leaders who think critically, act wisely, and work skillfully to advance the common good. Both topics embedded in the 2019 Wunderbar Together Campus Campaign aim for global awareness and cultural diversity. Engaging students in the campus weeks, giving them an opportunity to participate actively in the planning process, teach them soft and social skills such as intercultural competence, flexibility, creativity, time management, and teamwork.

The events of the 2019 Wunderbar Together Campus Campaign will again be open to the wider Twin Cities German community. The connection to the off-campus German community helps our students realize the relevance of their language and culture studies, for many will not have a chance to travel abroad to experience it firsthand.

With the generous sponsorship of the German Embassy, we are able to not only educate students about the interdisciplinary topics presented during the campus weeks, but also challenge our students to learn from the events and to implement German into their respective minors/majors; following the university’s interest in global connections.

We are grateful for the support of the sponsors for the 2019 campus campaign.

Embassy of the Federal Republic of Germany Washington, D.C.

University of St. Thomas German Program

University of St. Thomas College of Arts and Science

University of St. Thomas German Club

Germanic-American Institute St. Paul

German-American Chamber of Commerce Midwest, Minnesota Chapter

Goethe Institut