Connie Hubbard, instructor of German at Black Hills State University, traveled to Austria for a two-week seminar titled “Querschnitt Oesterreich.”
Austrian music, food, and modern culture trends are some of the things Connie Hubbard, instructor of German at Black Hills State University, got to experience during  a two-week seminar in Austria called “Querschnitt Oesterreich.”

Hubbard, who also teaches German at the South Dakota School of Mines and Technology, joined 28 other German educators from seven countries for the conference.

The seminar was held in three of Austria’s most important cities, Vienna, Graz and Innsbruck, with short excursions to Salzburg and the Admont Monastery. “The main focus of this seminar was to immerse all of the participants in the culture, history, literature, and arts of Austria to take back to their classrooms,” Hubbard said, noting that she has implemented many ideas with her students including some poetry and videos that will help her beginning German students.

“I took photos of hundreds of objects that will reinforce both language and culture. I will show them in class and use them to trigger language use,” she said.

Not only did Hubbard learn how to incorporate new learning techniques into her classroom, but she also got to experience new food, see some amazing sites and meet people from all around the world

The participants were given a scavenger hunt to find a certain part of the city, and when they got there, they had to interview different people for a short radio show. Hubbard’s group was led to a church that had been cathedralized.

“The church was actually a cathedral that had been sort of "un-churchified" in order to bring a younger congregation and to show its openness to those who had not been brought up in the church. It has been received very well, and is in a part of the city of Graz that houses many Africans,” said Hubbard.

Hubbard cooked apricot dumplings with a professional Austrian chef, toured a variety of museums, saw the Austrian Olympic site, and visited beautiful mountains around Austria. 

“One highlight of the seminar was a series of presentations and readings in historic city locations by Viennese film and stage actress and writer Kirstin Schwab, one of the seminar leaders,” Hubbard said.

Hubbard got a renewed passion for all things Austrian and for the German language by attending this conference and hopes to instill that same passion in her students.