Fall 2019 News: Alumni News: German Studies

Megan Rouch ‘19 and Jordan Wyner ‘19 on their Fulbright Year in Vienna

Jordan (left), Megan and friends in front of the Karlskirche

Hey William and Mary Modern Languages and Literatures Department! It’s Jordan and Megan, the former dynamic TA duo telling you all the exciting and surprising things we have found living in Austria’s capital. We were both very lucky and excited to have our applications to the Austrian-American Educational Commission Fulbright program accepted. Having acclimated ourselves after arriving in mid-September, the experience of living and working in a foreign country is one we will never forget.The work itself is one of the main draws of the program. We are constantly kept on our toes with new themes every week to discuss with students. It is always a lot of fun to hear their perspective on a variety of issues and of course to share with them what we love and find problematic about American culture. For instance, Jordan taught a lesson on how to analyze a film deploying The Shining as an example. Because of the holiday season, many TAs have given lessons on the Thanksgiving story, Black Friday, and celebrating Christmas.Amidst lots of lesson planning and meeting new people through the Fulbright Austria program and our schools, we have visited many a museum, casual palace, and the Zentralfriedhof (Central Cemetery) where Schumann, Brahms, and Strauss are all buried, and Mozart is honored. We have also investigated the jazz bar, street food, and café scenes, and Jordan is definitely an expert between the two of us on Kaffeehauskultur, Döner Kebap, and Käsekrainer (cheese-filled wurst). Megan often enjoys cooking at home with local produce from the Brunnenmarkt, the biggest open-air market in the city, right near her flat, where you can find some of Vienna’s most affordable groceries. Not only have we seen a fair bit of Vienna (although there is always more to see), but we’ve done some and plan on doing more traveling. Jordan will make his way to Berlin to visit old friends from our summer abroad at Potsdam Universität two summers ago, and both of us plan to go to Athens in January with a group of new friends. Overall, wir nighttimeschlagen dieses Programm vor (we recommend this program), because it is an excellent way to spend a year abroad learning valuable teaching skills and improving your German fluency, all the while helping the next generation of Austrian students learn the global language of English.