Absolutely Intercultural Show 197
In today’s podcast we discuss aspects of the German culture, involvement of refugees in everyday university life and integration of international students at Brock University. We talk to Sheila Young from Brock University, Canada who was visiting Germany for the first time in her life when we met her at RheinAhrCampus. She told us about how she prepared her visit to Germany from a cultural point of view. We will also hear about the experiences of three students, who took part in the Managing Cultural Diversity seminar. They will explain how refugees were involved in this project and how they benefitted from this experience.
Sheila Young who was visiting Germany for the first time prepared herself for the German culture before her visit at RheinAhrCampus. She had read in a book that foreigners are advised not to smile too much in Germany. Unfortunately, she did not stay long enough and did not meet enough people to be able to confirm this advice. It does take some time to distinguish between the specific behavior of the one person we happen to meet in a new culture and the more typical behavior of people from that cultural group. However, the Germans do tend to be more serious than others. Sometimes if Germans meet too many smilers in other cultures they are very quick to judge that this culture is “not very serious”, “not business-like” or even “shallow”.
RheinAhrCampus is host to many international events every year. One of them the Managing Cultural Diversity seminar-workshop was the framework for an experiment. There were students from other departments and lecturers from our partner universities – all in all a group of 41 participants from 22 different countries. And 3 of them were local refugees. You can imagine that all participants had the opportunity to make new and interesting friendships. It is a chance for all participants to work with refugees during the workshops. We asked our students whether they had been in contact with refugees before. Let us hope for the future, that refugees will be involved more and more in our education and can relax a little and feel as if they were at home away from home.
Sheila Young from Brock University Canada tells us what are the concerns of European students who go for an exchange semester to Canada and how they can manage them. We hear how much energy Brock University staff are putting into making our exchange students comfortable right from the start of their international experience in Canada.
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The host of this show is: Dr. Laurent Borgmann
Editor: Amama Farooq
Assistant Editors: Anderson Thelles & Asif Safarli