Laurianne Posch '16

German and International Affairs Major | Fulbright Scholar

Tell us about yourself and where you are today
I graduated from UNH in May 2016 with a B.A. in German and International Affairs. I just spent some time at home in the U.S. after working in Germany at a startup center at the Technical University of Munich. I leave for Austria tomorrow, September 12, for my Fulbright grant - a Community-Based Combined Award, under which I will be teaching English, taking courses at the university in applied cultural sciences, and volunteering with a refugee integration association. I'm very interested in international education and immigration.

Did you have another major/minor at UNH? What impact did studying language have o your field/discipline?
In addition to German, I also completed the International Affairs dual major at UNH. Studying German paired well with studying International Affairs - my knowledge of the language and the culture helped me to develop sound ideas and investigate sources for my International Affairs capstone senior year.

Who is a language professor/instructor who had the biggest impact on you and why?
All the German teachers at UNH have made an impact on me in some way. I was able to get to know most of them well, since I did independent projects/additional work in their classes to obtain honors credit and graduate with Honors German. This allowed me to get to know them better and benefit from each of their areas of expertise.

What's your favorite memory from study abroad?
It's difficult to pick a favorite memory - there were so many different aspects of my time abroad that impacted me and my outlook on the world. Perhaps one of the most gratifying moments, though, was turning in my end-of-term paper for a seminar I took at Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München - not only had I completed 10 pages of German research writing, I had also mastered the intricacies of formatting a German academic paper, which was perhaps the real feat there.

Did you participate in a high-impact learning experience at UNH (study abroad, independent research, etc.?)
Study Abroad was certainly a high-impact learning experience for me at UNH. I was lucky enough to be able to spend a whole year in Munich working towards my degree, and it was during this time abroad - and afterwards - that I developed an interest in the field of international education, my career field of interest. Presenting my International Affairs capstone at the URC was also a great learning experience - knowing how to concisely present research in a way that the public can understand is a skill that will serve me well. Writing and defending my German honors thesis with the guidance and support of the German department was also a highly impactful experience for me.

Why was language important to your UNH education? How has your language major benefitted you? 
The value of majoring in a language at UNH is that you can focus on your passion for a particular language and the culture(s) that it is found in, and, through the courses offered, gain a deeper understanding of not only that language and culture(s), but also of history and the world. Majoring in a language at UNH also makes it easy to study abroad and still graduate on time, since the learning happening abroad is truly a necessary part of your degree.

What are your goals for the near and distant future?
Upon returning to the U.S. after completing my Fulbright grant, I plan to begin working towards a Masters degree in International Education. Ultimately, I hope to work in a university setting in my beloved New England in international student/scholar support services.