Stephanie Benson

Overall Experience

German Education

Sports, Reading, GERMAN!!


Where did you study?
Geretsried, Germany

Name of program

Why did you choose to study there?
My German teacher here at UMKC, Dr. Baker, had contacts in the Gymnasium there and that is how I got to go there.

What courses did you choose to enroll in?
I did my Practicum for teaching, so I did not go to a University.

How did you pay for your study abroad experience?
With my own money

Did you use some sort of financial aid, scholarship or fellowship?

What was your living situation?
I stayed with a host family. The mom is an English teacher at the Gymnasium where I did my Practicum.

What did you do for fun?
Every weekend they took me to see at least one "site". We went to Italy for two days and then took a day trip to Salzburg, Austria another day.

Favorite aspect of your trip?
Being in the school with the kids. I love being in the classroom. I loved going to see places around Munich, but I loved being in the school most of all. Since I want to be a teacher, that was the place where I felt most comfortable.

Challenges you faced?
I was very nervous to speak German for some reason. I have been studying German for six years, but I always tried too hard not to mess up, and then I would mess up. It was very frusterating, but as I got used to my host family and became more comfortable with making mistakes, they would correct them and it made the experience even more worthwhile because I learned so much more because of it.

Advice or helpful tips for future students?
Encourage the people you are around to correct your speaking and to teach you better or different ways of saying things. That way you broaden your vocabulary in your particular language and get more out of your experience.

What is one thing (if anything) that you would change about your experience if you could do it over?
I would have stayed longer. :)

Funny or memorable story?
For some reason I cannot get this story out of my head even now. My host dad took me to a historical island and a golf course was on the trail to get to this island. The sign said in German Please don't stay standing. Balls from left. (or right depending on which way one is walking) Anyway, for some odd reason, that sign makes me laugh all the time, so that is one of my funniest memories.