5/13-Dachau

Today was heavy, emotionally. We visited Dachau, the concentration camp. It was originally built as the blueprint for even worse death camps used across Europe later on. We woke up and got on the bus to the camp, a fair ways from our hotel. When we got there, I was taken aback by the natural…

5/12-Munich!

Today, we went to Munich, one of the biggest and most famous cities in Germany. We began with a bit of a train fiasco… We all piled onto the train in Augsburg but most of us had to stand and it was going to be around a 45 minutes ride. So, when the train stopped…

5/11- AccULMulation of a lot

Today, we got to visit my favorite city thus far: Ulm. Ulm is a small town located in southern Germany, with the tallest church in the world. The church, Ulm Minster, is a 530 foot tall Gothic cathedral. I know from experience now that it is pretty darned tall, because we spent our morning climbing…

5/10-Donuts and Church

Today, we visited a beautiful castle, Naushwanstein, near the Alps by the town, Fussen. The massive mountains towered over the spires of the castle built by the infamous moon king, a man named Ludwig II who was considered unfit to serve as the king who was also found dead in a river shortly after his…

5/9-Continental Tires and Much More

Today we visited the company my group is studying: Continental. We traveled to their production facility and were greeted by probably the best speaker so far. He was head on innovation at Continental and gave great insights, including a discussion of recent deaths in the automated driving industry. He talked about how Continental manages such a…

Bis zum nächsten Mal, Deutschland!

It’s been several days since I arrived back in the U.S. I kept putting off writing this last post because I felt that if I wrote it, it would assert such a degree of finality that I was not prepared to handle. I missed Germany, I missed the group, and I missed the adrenaline rush…

Post Trip Reflection

I cannot believe that our two weeks are over!  The time flew by and feels like it slipped right away from me!  While most of the group traveled back home today, I am staying an extra week in Germany to travel a little more and to visit a friend who lives in Dusseldorf.  While I…

Day 13: Our Austrian Adventure!

Today was last full day in Germany and also our free day.  We split up into different groups today, and headed out to different excursions – either to Nuremburg for a festival, Stuttgart to meet family, or Salzburg, Austria for the day.   I was in the group of 14 who got up early to catch…

5/8-Exhaustion Sets In

Today was just as full as yesterday. We began by visiting a carbon fiber company, SGL. They make material for the frames of some BMW vehicles as well as carbon fiber baseball bats, and all kinds of products for companies. Bikes, molds, you name it. Their technical presentation was a bit long and highly technical…

5/7-Experiencing Augsburg

We had another excellent day. We began by visiting the University of Augsburg and met our groups for the presentations we will be giving while here. We worked for about an hour on our introductory presentations and gave them to our fellow students. I was able to work pretty well with the students and we…

Day 13: “Casually Takes a Day Trip to Austria”

Friday, May 18 Today was the last day of the Plus3 Germany program, and we had it all to ourselves. There were no planned group activities for this day, and 14 of us actually wound up going to Salzburg, Austria for the day. We met in the lobby at 7:45 to walk to the Augsburg…

Thanks for the Memories

“Memories, even your most precious ones, fade surprisingly quickly. But I don’t go along with that. The memories I value most, I don’t ever see them fading” (Kazuo Ishiguro).   While writing these blogs, I had moments where I was unable to continue typing a story because I was laughing too hard at the memories…

Day 12: “Obama’s House”

Thursday, May 17 With the looming cloud of the final presentations behind us, it was time to have some fun again. We skipped the hotel breakfast in favor of a traditional Bavarian breakfast in the nearby small town of Baindlkirch. The restaurant we entered was not like any we had experienced thus far: it was…

Day 11: The Culmination of All Our Hard Work

Wednesday, May 16 We had a later start than normal today, but the first and only activity for that day would not take place until 5:30 PM: the final presentation. The majority of us went to the university, first to eat lunch in the Mensa, then to work on last-minute details of the presentations that…

Day 10: The Fate of Hörauf & Kohler

Tuesday, May 15 This morning we hopped on the street car at around 9:30 to go and take a tour of Hörauf & Kohler. This company specializes in injection molding and makes plastic parts for the automobile industry. The person who would normally give the tour in English was not there, so we had a…

Day 9: “Who touched my robot?”

Monday, May 14 This morning at 9:15 we left the hotel to catch a street car to the University, where we listened to a talk about German politics. The presentation was very interesting because it brought up many connections between current political issues in America and in Germany. One main theme is this concept of…

Day 8: The Lie That is “Arbeit macht frei”

Sunday, May 13 This morning we visited the memorial site of the Dachau concentration camp. This was the first of the Nazi concentration camps to be established. Although it was not intended to be used to carry out systematic mass executions, it served as a model for future camps that were constructed in other parts…

Day 7: Schwarzgefahren!

Saturday, May 12 Today we spent the entire day in München, but the story of how we got there could almost be this entire blog post. So today there was a soccer game in Munich, and as a result the train was extremely crowded with fans going to watch. When our group got on, we…

Day 6: Towers and Tribulation

Friday, May 11 This morning we walked as a group to the Augsburg Hauptbahnhof and took a train to a town called Ulm. Running on 3.75 hours of actual sleep from the previous night, I was not thrilled to find out that our first destination was the tallest church tower in the world. And it…

Day 5: Castles, Churches, and Doughnuts

Thursday, May 10 After a late night last night, getting up early this morning to leave at 7:30 was a little more difficult than usual. But it was worth it, because we were visiting the castle Neuschwanstein (directly translated to “new swan stone”), which was one of three palaces built by König Ludwig der Zweite,…