Frequently Asked Questions

Herzlich Willkommen!  Welcome!

We hope you have consulted our departmental home page for more information about our department. Please join us, the students and faculty in the Department, in exploring the rich, diverse, and, at times, complex and controversial history and contemporary culture of the German-speaking countries.

Please see below a list of frequently asked question students raised in the past.  If you have any further questions, please do not hesitate to contact us

Frequently Asked Questions

 What can I do with a major in German Studies?
We are among a small number of colleges with special prestigious DAAD Annual Grants for graduating seniors, grants designed for students committed to pursuing graduate school not only in German area studies but, moreover, a professional career in science, foreign service, politics, business, or law. 

Our students have also received other major national awards, e.g. Berlin Parliamentary Internships, Fulbright/PAD, Atlantik-Brücke, and Congress/Bundestag Fellowships for Young Professionals; and Émigréé Parliamentary Internships, highly competitive programs, all of which combine graduate study and pre-professional internship experience.  We also host German Studies Alumnae Symposia on every two years , which will provide you with the opportunity to connect with- and talk to successful alumnae of the German Studies Department working in a variety of professional fields.  Speakers at our 2008 alumnae symposium included Judith Jaeger '95 (author) on “How Studying German Made me a Better Writer”, Deborah Piroch ’89 (international TV journalist) on “A Leap of Faith – German and Broadcasting”, Christine Le Jeune '04 (graduate student in international relations) on “From East to West: Germany’s Role Within an Expanding EU”, and Carianna Field '97 (attorney) on “Switching/Weaving/ Integrating Cultural Understanding Into Your Life”. For more information visit our alumnae network.

Are there any internships/summer programs available to me as a German major?
We highly support students who intend to pursue an internship related to their German Studies either in Germany or elsewhere.  Visit the list of interesting internships our students will pursue over the summer.  Students will work, e.g., for the Center of European Policy Analysis, a Washington, D.C. based political think tank; the chemistry department of the University of Aachen, Germany; the U.S. Embassy in Berlin; the State Department in Washington, D.C.; the Global Fund for Women in San Francisco; the U.S. Consulate in Leipzig; the Yiddish book Center in Amherst; and the Jamyang Education Foundation for Buddhist Women in India.  For more detailed information on internships, you may also consult the McCulloch Center for Global Initiatives and the Career Development Center.

How do I find out which course is right for me? 
If you have taken any German at any point for any amount of time either in high school or elsewhere, you need to complete the German Placement Exam

What are the requirements for a major and minor in German Studies?
For information on requirements visit the German Studies chapter of the catalogue.

What courses are being offered?
For information on fall courses login to ISIS.

What kind of study-abroad opportunities does the German Studies Department at Mount Holyoke College offer?
Please note that that in order to study abroad, you ordinarily have to take German every semester.  Read more information at "Learning Abroad for German Studies Majors and Minors."

What is the German Club?
Our enthusiastic and active German Club has helped organize a faculty/student German-Jewish dialogue group, trips to New York and Boston to German plays, lectures about contemporary Germany, Austria, Switzerland, and the EU, film showings, and “Oktoberfest,” “Nikolaus,” and “Karneval” parties.  Also, our theatre troupe, the “MHC German Players,” as the culmination of its work in German 211 (offered in the spring of 2010), stages an original one-act play in German at the annual “German Theatre Festival and Competition,” an event hosted each spring by Mount Holyoke College and attended by high school and college/university German theater groups from throughout the Northeast.

Who are the faculty members of the German Studies department and what are their fields of expertise?
For information on our faculty members, see our People page.