German and Peruvian
Bachelor degree in Social and Cultural Anthropology at LMU
I choose to study at VIU because, it was at my very first lecture at LMU, that our anthropology professor Frank Heidemann told us about VIU and presented it to us as a great study abroad programme. I chose to study at the Globalization Programme because it meant for me a great enrichment to my studies in Munich. Looking at the course syllabus I realized that studying at the VIU would allow me to study themes I was most interested in, environmental studies, and interculturality and gender studies, from different perspectives and also get to know other subjects. Also, I chose VIU because of the diverse and active learning community it would mean.
For this semester I was selected as a RED scholar alongside my two study colleagues Anna Peterson and Oxana Mroczek. As RED scholars, under regular circumstances, our role would have been to actively participate in creating a lively student community and create spaces for informal exchange between professors and students at the VIU through the Tea2Bs and the Plenary workshop together with Prof. Luca Pes. The possibilities for exchange in this semester were, of course, limited greatly due to the circumstances. Still, we believed that this would not have to mean, that there could be no exchange at all and decided to create the VIU community platform as a mix of a social media platform and a space for a more elaborate and free expression of ideas.
For me, it was a great learning experience to design the blog and over the next month, we will be adapting and changing the blog according to the way it is used and what is demanded.
We hope that the platform could act as a basis from which to reignite the exchange, as well as create a platform that could be useful for future semesters even when there is no distance learning as well. We have also included Alumni in the building of the website and hope that one of its positive side effects could be the facilitation of alumni exchange since now there is a space for those, who would like to keep in touch with the VU community after they left VIU.
The VIU has surely been a useful experience for me. In a time where intercultural competence is demanded, VIU offers a great environment to develop these skills. Also, I experienced the teaching and the academic exchange as really great and demanding. Still, I would like to see the VIU semester not only as useful, but primarily as a personally enriching experience. I had the chance to peek into fields of study, which will not necessarily help me career-wise, but were interesting and inspiring and most importantly, the possibility to build friendships, is something great in itself and it is really regrettable sadly that the possibility for bonding were limited in this semester.
I would recommend other students to apply for a semester at VIU. Among the study abroad programmes offered at LMU it is something unique. Unique, in the way that it transcends the division of home and visiting students. At VIU, all students and all professors are visitors and at home at the same time and this creates a space for really great, contextualized and self-reflective exchange.
Sebastian is a VIU RED scholar during Spring 2020. The RED scholarship program promotes excellence, academic, and cultural diversity in the Globalization Program.
If you are a student and wish to apply for the RED scholarship, consult the information here. The deadlines are June 5 and November 30.