Berlin Seminar 2018

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Berlin Seminar is an annual meeting organized by the German-American Fulbright Commission. Held this year between March 17 and 21, it was attended both by German Fulbrighters of the 2018-2019 program (who had their orientation meeting before leaving for the US) and American grantees placed throughout Europe, including a few of those residing in Poland – Cindy Abarca, David Arney, Ivey Barker, Molly Benkaim, Kathryn Cater, Michael Gilmor, Carol Grzych, Emily Kosmaczewski, Briana Krewson, Donna McCollough, Victoria Miluch, Philip Papaioannou, Jiwon Park and Andre Woloshuk. The participants could take part in all scheduled activities that allowed the two Fulbright groups to meet, interact and start networking. The program consisted of the keynote speeches (by Dr. Cornelia Schu – Expert Council of German Foundations on Integration and Migration and Prof. Dr. Heinz Bude from University of Kassel), workshops (on topics such as social entrepreneurship and diversity in European politics), presentations of the grantees’ research projects, meeting with Sawsan Chebli (State of Berlin Delegate to the Federation, Permanent Secretary for Active Citizenship and International Relations), yoga sessions, Berlin city tours and a premiere performance of the Fulbright Jazz Ensemble that comprises Fulbright grantees and alumni.

Cindy Abarca

Cindy Abarca

English Teaching Assistant, University of Bialystok

Participating in the Berlin Seminar was inspiring as the seminar provided me with platform for Fulbright students to come together to discuss international cooperation for the benefit of improving society. Some of the activities that I participated while in the seminar included workshops on social media, cultural sensitivity discussions, presentations from Fulbright scholars, and presentation from notable leaders discussing issues such as the refugee crisis in Europe. Learning about the different political issues that are shaping society and discussing with other students interesting projects that ranged from history to science was a unique experience. As a result of my attendance to the Berlin conference, I was able to meet other Fulbright grantees and hear about their stories and areas of interest. I also learned more about the political issues occurring in Germany and Europe that I was unaware of.

Papaioannou Philip

Philip Papaioannou

U.S. Student Researcher, University of Warsaw

The Berlin Seminar was more eye-opening and inspiration than I would have imagined previously. I knew that we would have the chance to speak with many Fulbrighters staying in other European nations, as well as Germans heading to America, but the seminars and workshops were a pleasant surprise. I watched many project presentations that other Fulbrighters were working on, and I was truly inspired by their work in terms of the diversity of topics and the extensive impact they’re having on society both locally and globally. My workshop on Bitcoin gave me an interesting look at consumerism in the world, a side of psychology that I wouldn’t have otherwise understood.