I’m still in awe of the time I’ve had abroad in Germany! It’s been incredible to say the least and it is something I will be able to talk about and recount for years to come. I wouldn’t think I would say this about a close to $5,000 trip, but it is truly a ‘bang for your buck.’ Even more so when awarded scholarships to help with the cost. Fortunately, I was a recipient of the Thomas Angelo Honors Scholarship. This award gave me the ability to enjoy the trip and worry a little bit less about the cost and my debt burden. Additionally, I was able to carry a few more euros with me and buy myself and my family a couple of souvenirs from my time in Germany. I was able to experience new opportunities I wouldn’t have been exposed to if it wasn’t for participating on this trip.
In the short two weeks we had, we got to experience so much! We explored the classic tourists attractions, went on city tours, did site visits, and had the opportunity to travel to Austria for a day! We visited Neuschwanstein Castle, went to BMW Museum, and climbed Laber Mountain. We walked through the cities of Augsburg, Munich, Ulm, Regensberg, Oberammergau, and Salzburg. And while we had fun, we also remembered those who faced hardship and suffered during WWII, on our tour of Dachau concentration camp.
We learned so much more in these immersive two weeks than we could have done in a semester long class. On our site visits of SGL, BMW, KUKA, Continental and Hörauf & Kohler, we were exposed to the inner workings and behind the scenes operations of almost every aspect of the automotive supply chain! Each company did their own part for some portion of the automotive making process and learning about this with it happening right in front of our eyes was amazing. Even learning about future plans and hopes that automotive companies had from those companies themselves was definitely a crazy experience when you think about it. A common talk around these companies’ hopes was autonomous driving. We learned a decent amount about this from the companies but also the group presentations, on top of all the other automotive industry topics.
While the main focus of this trip was the automotive industry, we learned a lot of the culture of Germany both prior to our departure but also during our time there. Each city we visited and each tour we went on, we heard about all the history each city held, differing from the next with some similarity overlaps in terms of architecture and culture. We observed and discovered many differences between the US and Germany as well. For instance, one main thing is the water. Drinking from the tap is safe almost anywhere in Germany, yet you’ll almost never find water for free there. Many things we learned could only have been done first hand, immersed in Germany!
The Plus3 Program is one of a kind and definitely has me wanting to study abroad again, whether its back to Germany or off exploring another different country. This is definitely a future plan for me and my time at Pitt.
Currently, I am a rising sophomore in Pitt Business, with an intended major in Accounting. Starting in the fall, I will begin pursing the Certificate in Leadership and Ethics. Additionally, while, my intended major is Accounting, I am still interested in exploring other possible majors within Pitt Business. This program gave me more insight into the focus of supply chain management, a major I am currently considering. I plan to continue my academic studies to earn a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration. One of my greatest goals to achieve at Pitt Business is to become fully aware of what it really means to take my education “From the Classroom, To the City, To the World.”