Fall 2017 Issue Featured News: German Studies

German Studies: Working on a Sustainable Farm in Swabia

Working on a Sustainable Farm in Swabia

Sebastian Viscuso (German Studies and International Relations ’19)


In planning my study abroad, I wanted to have as many new experiences with the German language as possible. Since my study abroad ended after only 6 weeks, I decided to investigate other options for either studying or working while overseas. My research led me to WWOOF, an international educational organization dedicated to supporting worldwide, sustainable agriculture. WWOOF provides its members with a list of organic farms that need labor. I ended up living at Schwalbenhof, a small farm in Baden-Württemberg. On the farm I felt less like a worker and more like a member of a small, tight-knit community. Everyone who lived there participated in the daily work, ate meals family-style, and went on excursions together. While I learned a tremendous amount of German in this immersion environment, I also learned real skills such as harvesting, planting, weeding, herding animals, washing vegetables, and working at farmers markets. I would absolutely recommend this type of study abroad as an option for anyone looking to gain life-long memories and learn some German along the way.