PhD German

Friederike SchleinWhere and what did you study before you came to Germanic and Slavic Studies at University of Waterloo?

I successfully completed my ‚Erstes und Zweites Staatsexamen für das Lehramt an Grund- und Hauptschulen‘ in Lower Saxony in Germany in the early 2000s. It has always been my passion to help others to excel at what they are trying to achieve. That is why I enthusiastically worked as a teacher and instructor on the Kindergarten, Primary & Secondary School and University level in Germany for more than ten years.

What are your interests in German Studies?

My primary interest lies in literary studies, because it mirrors the relation between literature and culture which in turn impact society and our every day lives.

Why did you choose University of Waterloo?

University of Waterloo has an excellent reputation and is broadly known as the most innovative university in Canada. While still studying in Germany I had heard of the wide range of international exchange programs that are available at Waterloo. These factors played a very important role in my decision to enrol in the PhD program of Department for the Germanic and Slavic Studies.

Why did you choose this program?

The structure of the program allowed me to obtain a state-of-the-art Graduate level education that embraces linguistics, literary, cinematic and cultural studies as well as many other aspects of the field. At the same time the path to the PhD is flexible enough to pursue my own research interests in a well mentored and supported environment. These factors made it very easy for me to select the program.

Do you already know what you want to write your thesis on?

Yes, I have been carving out the details of my thesis subject with the help of my supervisor Dr. Skidmore, who has supported me with his extensive expertise in the field of contemporary German literature and culture.

As a kid, what did you want to be when you grew up?

Looking back at my childhood and youth, I can say that they were filled with confidence and positivity towards the future. I agree with one of my favourite authors Franz Kafka who once said: `Wege, die in die Zukunft führen, liegen nie als Weg vor uns. Sie werden zu Wegen erst dadurch, dass man sie geht.`

What is a fun-fact about you?

I had the opportunity to visit Canada as part of a student group in 1997. During this trip, we also spent two days in Waterloo visiting the University and the Department of Germanic and Slavic Studies. At the time, I had never thought having the chance to enroll in the PhD program 15 years later.

University of Waterloo

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