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Program overview

Major: German Studies
Minors: German Studies, German

The German Studies Program sponsors a full range of language courses, as well as two English-language seminars per year on German topics. Students may pursue a major or minor in German Studies, or a minor in German.

Why German?

During Obama's 2012 debates with Governor Romney, he mentioned two countries by name: Germany and China. Germany has the largest economy in Europe, is the global leader in green technology and innovative environmental policy, and the home of multiple high-tech industries, from solar panel production to high-end electronics and automobile design. German is the third most-commonly taught language in the United States. With a background in German, you have access not only to economic opportunities in a global world (BASF, Siemens, and BMW all have US offices), but also to thinkers like Kant, Freud, Hegel, Marx, Nietzsche, Kafka, Rilke and Mann.

And if old white men don't excite you? No problem: take a look at the award-winning films of Fatih Akin, the fiction of Anna Seghers, Christa Wolf, Emine Sevgi Oezdamar; the poetry of Zehra Cirak; the political satire of Noah Sow, the theoretical writings of Kien Ngi Ha or the theatrical productions of the Ballhaus Naunynstraße. Germany is a vibrant, diverse, multicultural democracy. You can find whatever you're looking for there.

Off-campus study

Cornell's block calendar makes it easy for students to arrange educational opportunities abroad. The Goethe Institut, which supports German training centers throughout Germany and around the world, provides an excellent match for the block plan because courses are offered for one month, two months, or longer. Students also have a wide range of other options, such as the semester-long Vienna Program sponsored by Central College. Visit our off-campus study page for more information and a wide range of additional resources.