The German Art History class brought its textbooks to life during the annual trip to Germany over winter break, Dec. 28–Jan. 9. The group traveled to Vienna, Austria and Munich, Germany to visit several museums, ranging from the art of Gustav Klimt to BMW motor creations.

For biomedical engineering student Lexi Such, experiencing the cultures and food in the different countries was a highlight of the trip. “I really enjoyed the vibrancy of Munich and being able to explore the different museums, churches and gardens with my classmates.”

This trip is one of several short-term study abroad opportunities offered at MSOE. Students attend scheduled activities with the entire class as well as choose their own adventure for a day trip. “My favorite class activity was the Gardens at Schönbrunn Palace in Vienna since we were able to wander around off the main paths and kept finding random statues and buildings in the woods,” said Such.

Unique to this course, students are able to apply the things they learned in class to the artwork they viewed in the different museums. “Almost everything we discussed in class we were able to view in person, so it was nice having background information on the styles, periods and artists that we saw in the museums, and be able to apply that same information for artists that we hadn't seen before,” said Such. “For example, the Alte Pinakothek has a lot of renaissance styled art, many of which have religious themes which I would not have known the iconography behind many of the paintings before taking this class.”

Dr. Patrick Jung, Humanities, Social Science and Communication Department, teaches the German Art History class and has been taking student groups on this trip for years. With the switch to semesters, the longer winter break enabled students to extend their stay in Europe and continue their explorations on their own. The short-term trip is an opportunity to experience different cultures and learn beyond the classroom. Margaret Dwyer and Dr. Nadya Shalamova, Humanities, Social Science and Communication; and Marina Bernovich, Grohmann Museum, attended the trip along with more than 30 students. 

Such recommends anyone interested take this course and go on the trip. “Even if you don't know anyone else on the trip before signing up, you’ll be able to make friends with your classmates and bond over the experiences, which could include hiking up an icy mountain in Salzburg!”