first post.

I’m setting up this blog as a way to keep in touch with everyone back home while I’m in Germany this summer.  For background information: I have an engineering internship in Magdeburg, Germany, which is about 1.5 hours outside of Berlin.  I will be abroad 10 weeks this summer, working and spending one week in Italy.  I’m very excited to see what God has in store for me! I will use this blog to post pictures, tell funny stories and just update how my day-to-day life shapes up over the Atlantic.  


A town called Magdeburg.  It is located in former East Germany.  At first there was some apprehension about this location, due to some people thinking the town is rough and there being bad neighborhoods and I quote, old ‘skin heads’ running around.  I had some reassuring to do, saying that I know the language, this isn’t my first time in Germany or former East Germany, and  bluntly, that I’m not stupid. 



But it’s good not to be naive, and being aware of the towns perceptions is a good thing. But there is river flowing through the town and a huge University.  Magdeburg was pretty much destroyed after WWII, so most of the buildings were built up pretty poorly by the Russians.  More than that, I really don’t know. 

living arrangements.

I’ll be living in Magdeburg, approx. 2.7 km [1.5 mile] away from the Hauptbahnhof [train station] at one of the student dormitories for the local university.  I’ll have my own room and bathroom, with a shared kitchen down the hall.  I have been assured by dear friend Liz (See below), that these kitchens are indeed used by the students.  There is laundry in the basement. Well see how much I eat in the Mensa [cafeteria]. 

my dorm.


floor plan of my room.



Here is the website of the Engineering firm I will be working at-  ITG Plaungs und Energieberatungs GmbH. From the looks of it, they are a pretty broad consulting firm, doing projects that incorporate high-efficiency energy-saving designs into their building plans.  The main branch is located in a suburb of Magdeburg, called Schönebeck.  I’m pretty sure they have an office actually in Magdeburg, and this is where I’ll be working.  I received a two page project description, all in complex technical German.  The main gist of it is that I’ll be working with a group of other interns deciding if it’s worth it or not to start putting solar panels on buildings that ITG renovates.   

personal shout-outs.  

First, to my German professor at Calvin, Corey Roberts.  He has been an incredible presence this semester, basically setting up this experience for me.  All the phone calls and emails arranging this for me…. geesh, what a blessing.  And the countless emails reminding me what forms to turn in and documents to write.  And then the editing of these documents that were to be sent abroad.  I am eternally grateful. 

Second, to my grade school friend Liz Ludwig, who is studying abroad in Göttingen.  She has already been a great resource for my dumb little questions, and hopefully she will continue to be.  We are going to try and meet up sometime!

Third, to the Hekman Library at Calvin College, specifically the Theological Seminary Library.  The overwhelming support I have received from this department has been delightful.  I hope to make good use of the knowledge and resources they have provided me while I am in Germany. 

german word[s] of the day.

das Praktikum – Internship

die Praktikantin – Female Intern


Ich bin eine Praktikanin. [I am an Intern]


4 responses to “first post.

  1. Thank you for the good word about the theological division of Hekman Library. While I have little wisdom about solar power, it does call to mind (by VERY free association) a famous work by a nun, the medieval mystical writer, Mechthild of Magdeburg: Das fliessende Licht der Gottheit (The Flowing Light of the Godhead)( In no way do we expect you to pattern your life this summer after Mechthild, however. You can find the a Middle High German version and an English translation on Google Books for free. Have a great summer.

    • Only you Luge could come up with this Magdeburg mystic’s book auf Deutsch, no less! Your post cracked me up. I know that Calvin’s Magdegurg collections are in good hands unter Ihrer Aufsicht.

  2. Sounds like an adventure to me, K. I hope you enjoy your time there. You took your German further than I ever had a chance to do. Looking forward to your future entries.

    Oh, by the way, I found the “lion king” video you have up on YouTube to be completely hilarious. 🙂

  3. Katrina … I’m so impressed! I def. don’t have a blog but am enjoying some great weather over here in Seattle 🙂 can’t wait to hear more about your summer as it progresses!

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