Die 3. Generation libanesischer MESH-Studierender in Erfurt (Oktober 2015 - Februar 2016)

Eine Menschengruppe auf dem Erfurter Weihanchtsmarkt bei Nacht

Auch dieses Jahr begrüßen wir wieder Gäste unserer libanesischen Partnerhochschulen. Austauschstudierende aus dem Libanon studieren im Wintersemester gemeinsam mit Teilnehmern der dritten und vierten MESH-Generation. Zudem haben wir  Prof. Georges Yahchouchi und Gabriele Bunzel-Khalil von der Université Saint-Esprit de Kaslik bzw. der Université Saint-Joseph am Lehrstuhl zu Gast.

Our Semester in Erfurt

Drei Frauen in eine Riesenrad
At the Oktoberfest in Erfurt

Spending a semester at the University of Erfurt has given us our first great German experience. During the first days of October we attended Oktoberfest at the Domplatz, in the heart of the old city; we tried tasty traditional Thüringen delicacies and local beer, and walked around the beautiful old town that has kept its medieval architecture and charm. The exchange year was very well organized. All exchange students were well taken care of. Erfurt was a nice and safe city to live in and study. We have many beautiful memories from our exchange semester here…

When you’re preparing to go abroad for year, a month, or even a week, someone warns you about the culture shock. You’ve done you research about the country, you found the way to get from the airport to your dormitory, and you are pretty sure you know what to expect. And you finally get there. Every country has its own “weirdness”. And it takes a while to get used to the new environment, the food, and even the people.

A culture shock comes in different levels: the first thing that seemed strange to us were the different bins for the garbage. Recycling in Germany is probably the most confusing thing ever. The second shock came to us when we realized that almost all stores are closed on Sundays and Holidays. Now we understand this, because everyone deserves a day off. The third unusual thing happened to us when we started our studies in the University: at the end of each class, all students knocked on the table, as we usually knock on the door. Our first reaction was “What’s going on?”. Later we asked the German students and they explained that it’s like applauding, thanking the class. Es ist wirklich interessant!

During our semester in Erfurt, we also had a chance to visit other cities in Thuringia. The former royal town of Gotha has many attractive places, including its historic town center. Jena is a famous student city. It is known for its University (FSU), which is counted among the 20 oldest universities in Germany, but not as old as Erfurt, which competes with Heidelberg for being the oldest university in Germany. We also visited Halle (Saale) – a city in Saxony-Anhalt. It’s a green city, with a mixture of art, culture, relaxation and shopping.

Concerning the studies, the program is well organized. The courses allowed open discussions, especially regarding the texts which we had to read and prepare at home. In general, the MESH-program is a great exchange program that combines history, anthropology and politics. The benefit of this program is the linguistic mix and the academic double degree that gives more opportunities.

We had a great experience in Erfurt. We learned a lot, we met many other international students and spent a good time in this quiet, miniature, but at the same time dynamic city that is more than charming with its German architecture. Each of the buildings and each place tells a different story… ours was made of good friendships sweet times and enriching experiences!

Nancy, Carla and Louisa

Sechs Frauen auf einem Platz
With German MESH-students in Jena

Exkursion nach Halle

Das Historische Waisenhaus der Franckeschen Stiftungen in Halle/Saale.
Das Historische Waisenhaus der Franckeschen Stiftungen in Halle/Saale. (CC-BY-SA-3.0, Timo Pilgram)

Im Rahmen des Seminars "L’émergence des sciences modernes en Angleterre, France et Italie au 17e siècle" von Herrn Prass fuhren die Studierenden am 14. Januar mit diesem nach Halle, um sich verschiedene wissenschaftliche Sammlungen anzusehen. Besichtigt wurden die Meckelsche Sammlungen, die größte anatomische Sammlung in Deutschland, sowie die Wunderkammer in den Franckeschen Stiftungen.

Die Meckelschen Sammlungen wurden im späten 18. Jahrhundert durch die Familie Meckel zusammengetragen und umfassen rund 8000 anatomische Präparate. Sie sind heute im Institut für Anatomie und Zellbiologie der Martin-Luther-Universität untergebracht.

Die Kunst- und Naturalienkammer der Franckeschen Stiftungen ist eine der letzten vollständig erhaltenen "Wunderkammern" Europas und beherbergt circa 3000 barocke Exponate und Artefakte. Die Ende des 17. Jahrhunderts begründete Sammlung wird noch heute entsprechend dem Museumskonzept des 18. Jahrhunderts im Historischen Waisenhaus der Frankeschen Stiftung präsentiert.

Auf dem Erfurter Weihnachtsmarkt

Spätestens nach dem Seminar „Politics of the Levant“ von unserem libanesischen Gastwissenschaftler Prof. Georges Yahchouchi begann die Weihnachtszeit. Gemeinsam besuchten libanesische und deutsche Lehrende und Studierende des Lehrstuhls und des MESH-Programms den Erfurter Weihnachtsmarkt, inklusive Glühwein und musikalischer Darbietung von hiesigen Weihnachtsliedern – beides Neuland für unsere Gäste aus dem Libanon.