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The German Program at Clemson University

"When Evil-Doing Comes Like Falling Rain" (Bertolt Brecht, 1935)
Like one who brings an important letter to the counter after office
   hours: the counter is already closed.
Like one who seeks to warn the city of an impending flood, but speaks
  another language. They do not understand him.
Like a beggar who knocks for the fifth time at a door where he has four
   times been given something: the fifth time he is hungry.
Like one whose blood flows from a wound and who awaits the doctor:
   his blood goes on flowing.
So do we come forward and report that evil has been done us.
The first time it was reported that our friends were butchered there was a cry of horror.
Then a hundred were butchered. But when a thousand were butchered and there was
   no end to the butchery, a blanket of silence spread.
When evil-doing comes like falling rain, nobody calls out “stop!”
When crimes begin to pile up they become invisible. When sufferings become
   endurable the cries are no longer heard. The cries, too, fall like rain in summer.
From: Against Forgetting: Twentieth Century Poetry of Witness
ed. Carolyn Forché, trans. John Willett. Norton,1993




What we do

The German Program at Clemson University prepares students for a wide range of careers and graduate studies in the humanities, business, sciences, engineering, politics, diplomacy, law, and education. The success of our graduates tells us that knowledge of German language and culture gives students a competitive edge in today’s job market, both in the U.S. and abroad. Employers in all fields are looking for more than just a degree. They seek well-rounded, globally aware candidates with the kinds of skills that we instill in our students—skills that benefit them not just professionally, but also personally, for example: communicating effectively, thinking critically, solving complex problems in creative ways, maintaining an intellectual curiosity at all times, and being sensitive to cultural differences in today’s global environment. In the end, thinking within and with a discipline, idea, or problem with personal intellectual curiosity and passion makes today’s college graduates successful.

What we offer
  1. Three different types of degrees:
    1. a B.A. in Language and International Business that prepares students for careers in international business and combines German language study with business component (one semester study abroad and a one-semester long internship is required)
    2. a B.A. in Modern Languages major (German Concentration) that prepares students to work for non-profit organizations, (inter)national government and diplomatic agencies, the education sector, as well as preparation for graduate studies in the humanities, law, medicine, and education; the emphasis in this major is on the history, culture, philosophy, cinema, and literature of the German-speaking countries (one year study abroad is required)
    3. [to be phased out] a German Studies Minor (15 credits at the 3000 and 4000 level) that can be combined with any major offered at Clemson and aims to broaden students’ backgrounds; this minor is especially important in technical fields, where today’s students have to demonstrate a global perspective in research, manufacturing, management, and human resources
      New (Fall 2022): a minor in German Studies requires GER 2010 and GER 2020 and 12 credits of 3000- and 4000-level GER courses. GER 3970, GER 4760, and GER 4970 may not be used to satisfy requirements for the German Studies minor
    4. a Double Major in German that combines well with other B.A. degree programs to broaden the intellectual spectrum for high-achieving students (e.g. with a B.A. in Economics, Philosophy, History)
  2. A wide range of curricular offerings geared towards developing proficiency in German, critical thinking skills, a strong foundation in the humanities, and the ability to interact in a culturally appropriate manner—be it in a social, business, or academic setting. Among the courses typically offered during the academic year are:
    1. Four semesters of rigorous German language instruction at the elementary and intermediate levels
    2. Advanced courses on different topics pertaining to conversation and composition, literature, culture, cinema, and business
    3.  Our students realize that taking additional German courses challenge and expand their thinking skills. Thus it is not uncommon to find many non-majors or non-minors ( as well as graduate students) in our courses. We welcome all who are interested in advancing their background in German.
  3. Extracurricular activities, such as the weekly Kaffeestunde and the bimonthly Stammtisch, lectures by guest speakers, film screenings, reading group meetings, our annual Conference for German in the Professions, welcome and farewell parties, hikes, and more. Some of these activities are designed to foster an on-campus community of German speakers by bringing students together with their peers from other German courses, with native Germans, and with alumni. Other events give Clemson students the opportunity to connect in a more formal setting with scholars and business professionals from the region and beyond.
  4. Study-abroad requirements for German majors stipulates that students in the Language and International Business major must complete a minimum of one semester at a degree-providing institution in a German-speaking country; students in the German Modern Language major must complete a full year study abroad at a German institution of higher education (an additional internship is recommended). For more details, speak with your German advisor.
  5. Study-abroad opportunities for all students (in the summer or during the academic year) at the University in Bamberg, the Technical University of Jena, the OTH Regensburg, any university or technical college in the sister-state of Rhineland-Palatinate (e.g. Mainz), and other partner universities, as well as our own German language intensive summer program in Germany. Additional study abroad opportunities are offered through Clemson University’s partnership with institutions and organizations. Students may also take intensive language classes in Germany and Austria through the Goethe Institute, the IKK Düsseldorf, and inlingua in Vienna.

Why German? Read on ...

New Minor in German Studies

Enroll now!

A minor in German Studies requires GER 2010 and GER 2020 and 12 credits of 3000- and 4000-level GER courses. GER 3970, GER 4760, and GER 4970 may not be used to satisfy requirements for the German Studies minor.