By Aimee Squires, Foster Undergraduate who is participating in an exchange with the WHU Otto von Beisheim School of Management in Vallendar, Germany.
After two months in, I can honestly say that my study abroad experience is everything I had hoped for and more. I’m currently studying in Vallendar, Germany at WHU. It’s a small town and the school only has around 1,200 students so it is a change of pace from normal life at UW. During the first couple of weeks the school puts on a handful of events to allow exchange students to get to know each other and to get to know other German students. Within a week or so I met some of the most amazing people that have made this experience even better. Our favorite school events are Tauschie Tuesdays (tauschie is a German slang word for an exchange student). Each week is designated to exchange students from certain areas and they sell their local cuisine at the campus bar; it is such a fun way to see everyone after traveling on the weekends and to meet new people.
The classes here are quite different than at UW. Instead of having a schedule of classes on MWF and TTH, most classes only meet around 5 times but for 3-4 hours. You are given an opportunity to learn a lot during every lecture and are responsible for your own studying and work outside of the course. Classes are either based on cases/group work or only a final, most courses do not have textbook reading or homework. The students here are incredibly hard working and motivated, so there tends to be less checks put in place to ensure we are all studying, people have the discipline to work on their own.
One of the best things about going to WHU is how centrally it is located as well. It’s about an hour from the main Frankfurt airport and an hour from the Cologne airport, giving us plenty of opportunity to travel around to other cities and countries. So far some of our favorites have been Berlin and Dublin! I’m looking forward to exploring other cities and continuing to strengthen my relationships with friends here as well!