Sum­mer in the cast­le

© Flo­ri­an Hart­mül­ler

For four weeks, 20 stu­dents from six Eu­ro­pean coun­tries got to know the re­gi­on and its com­pa­nies at the “Sum­mer in the Cast­le”. Now the pro­ject of the Dua­le Hoch­schu­le (coope­ra­ti­ve edu­ca­ti­on col­le­ge) en­ded.
Bad Mer­gen­theim. “Ger­man clas­ses here are much more in­te­res­ting than in Italy,“says Mi­col Lub­i­an. For ex­amp­le, the grammar part of the “Sum­mer in the Cast­le”, for ex­amp­le, was plea­singly short. What the 18-year-old from near Pa­dua de­scri­bes is part of the con­cept of the ap­p­li­cant se­mi­nar de­vi­sed by the Dua­le Hoch­schu­le Ba­den-Würt­tem­berg (DHBW). “We don’t give les­sons like in school”, ex­p­lains pro­ject ma­na­ger Ste­fan Riedl.

Of cour­se, ele­ments such as the de­ba­te have also been fine-tu­n­ed. In princip­le, howe­ver, the aim was to give pu­pils an un­der­stan­ding of com­mu­ni­ca­ti­on in Ger­ma­ny and, abo­ve all, in Ger­man com­pa­nies. As Riedl re­ports, dif­fe­rent cul­tures clas­hed with each other. For ex­amp­le, it was un­fa­mi­li­ar to for­eign stu­dents that in some com­pa­nies in Ger­ma­ny, all em­ployees were cal­led by name. One par­ti­ci­pant would have been sur­pri­sed to find out:“The boss does­n’t scream at all”.

In­te­res­ting roof win­dows

They should also be in­tro­du­ced to to­pics that the stu­dents do not deal with in their ever­y­day life. “For ex­amp­le, we are showing how in­te­res­ting a sky­light can be,“explains Riedl.
At a clo­sing event in the cast­le, the young peop­le pre­sen­ted what they had ex­pe­ri­en­ced du­ring the pro­ject and worked out in five groups. Cam­pus di­rec­tor Pro­fes­sor Seon-Su Kim and the ac­com­pany­ing pro­fes­sor En­ri­co Purr­le then pre­sen­ted them with the cer­ti­fi­ca­tes of par­ti­ci­pa­ti­on.
Du­ring the week, the stu­dents al­ways had Ger­man les­sons in the morning. In the af­ter­noon they vi­si­ted com­pa­nies, prac­ti­ced pre­sen­ta­ti­ons and crea­ted a jour­nal. On the wee­kends the­re were ex­cur­si­ons, for ex­amp­le to Würz­burg, Stutt­gart and Hei­del­berg. The stu­dents were en­thu­si­astic about the Schloss­gar­ten in Veits­höch­heim and the Mer­gen­theim Volks­fest.
An im­portant event in the con­text of the pro­ject was the “Speed Da­ting”, du­ring which the pu­pils and the six part­ner com­pa­nies of the “Sum­mer in the Castle“had the op­por­tu­ni­ty to get to know each other bet­ter in short con­ver­sa­ti­ons. The se­arch for young ta­lent is the main ob­jec­ti­ve of the pro­ject, which was in­itia­ted five ye­ars ago by part­ner com­pa­nies of the Coope­ra­ti­ve Sta­te Uni­ver­si­ty. “Com­pa­nies do not find en­ough skil­led workers in Germany,“explains cam­pus ma­na­ger Kim. The­re­fo­re, they are now de­li­ber­ate­ly se­ar­ching ab­road. The stu­dents came part­ly from coun­tries whe­re com­pa­nies from the re­gi­on have of­fices, such as Hun­ga­ry. Ita­ly, Bul­ga­ria, Es­to­nia, Lat­via, Lat­via and Slo­va­kia were also re­pre­sen­ted among the coun­tries of ori­gin. Ele­ven of the 20 par­ti­ci­pa­ting stu­dents were in­vi­ted to in­ter­view with DHBW part­ner com­pa­nies. Two par­ti­ci­pants have al­rea­dy ac­cep­ted a job of­fer.
One of them is 17-year-old Ay­ten Pa­muk from Bul­ga­ria. She will com­ple­te her school-lea­ving ex­ami­na­ti­on next year and will start working at TecAlliance in Wei­kers­heim in Sep­tem­ber 2018. She is par­ti­cu­lar­ly in­te­res­ted in elec­tro­mo­bi­li­ty. Pa­muk has been lear­ning Ger­man for four ye­ars, but came to the coun­try for the first time for the “sum­mer in the cast­le”. She lik­ed the re­gi­on and the peop­le. She would also like to live and work here af­ter her stu­dies.

In­ter­view

Not yet con­fir­med, but the 17 year old Ar­tur Na­f­ra­di, who co­mes from near Bu­da­pest, has al­rea­dy an in­ter­view. He has been lear­ning Ger­man for more than ten ye­ars and at­tends a bi­lin­gu­al grammar school, whe­re histo­ry and geo­gra­phy are taught in Ger­man, for ex­amp­le. He has been to Ger­ma­ny several times, in­clu­ding in Co­lo­gne and on Lake Con­stance and has friends and ac­quain­tan­ces here. He would also like to work af­ter school in the Tau­ber Val­ley and stu­dy in­ter­na­tio­nal busi­ness.

Wel­co­m­ing cul­tu­re

The fi­nal de­cisi­on as to who will be re­crui­ted is up to the com­pa­nies. “We have no in­flu­ence on that anymore,“says cam­pus ma­na­ger Kim. But even if not all pu­pils find a job directly,“Sommer im Schloss” is in his opi­ni­on a suc­cess. The aim of the pro­ject is also to con­vey a Ger­man “wel­co­me cul­tu­re” and to give pu­pils an un­der­stan­ding of the re­gi­on and its inhabitants:“The pu­pils should feel at ease here, and this will also help to dis­pel any pre­ju­di­ces. In the me­an­ti­me, the­re are al­rea­dy some stu­dents at DHBW who have ta­ken part in “Som­mer im Schloss” in re­cent ye­ars and sup­por­ted the pro­ject.
Pro­ject ma­na­ger Riedl adds:“A for­mer em­ployee even took four ex­tra days off to be able to par­ti­ci­pa­te”.

The ori­gi­nal ar­ti­cle in ger­man can be found here.

Matthias F.

Ich bin Matthias, 22 Jahre alt. Meine Ausbildung zum IT-Systemkaufmann bei der TecAlliance GmbH habe ich im September 2015 begonnen. Seit dem konnte ich viel erleben und meine Wissen in sämtlichen Teilen der IT und dem Kaufmännischen Wesen verbessern.

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