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By Design, Student Exchanges Between UC and Germany Enhance Education

UC’s nationally number-one ranked industrial design program and that at Bergische Universitat Wuppertal in Germany regularly host student exchanges. Currently, five UC students are studying in Wuppertal, and four German students are studying here in DAAP.

Date: 11/18/2012 12:00:00 AM
By: M.B. Reilly
Phone: (513) 556-1824

UC ingot   The University of Cincinnati’s nationally number-one ranked industrial design program and the respected industrial design program at the Bergische Universitat Wuppertal have at least one thing in common – challenging work loads and “all nighters.”

That’s according to Benedict Hartmann, 25, a fourth-year industrial design student from the university in Wuppertal. He admits that in both locales, he works “whole nights and days…. But I think that’s normal if you are studying ID.”

Hartmann, originally from Dusseldorf, is one of four Wuppertal students currently spending fall semester in UC’s College of Design, Architecture, Art, and Planning (DAAP) before starting cooperative education terms in January where they will work for design employers in the United States.
from left to right: Patrick Loh, Leon Wenning, Ivo Wawer, Benedict Hartmann
From left are German exchange students Patrick Loh, Leon Wenning, Ivo Wawer and Benedict Hartmann.

Also studying at DAAP with Hartmann are
  • Patrick Loh,  23, originally from Warburg, a fourth-year industrial design student from Bergische Universitat Wuppertal
  • Ivo Wawer, 24, originally from Bonn, fourth-year industrial design student from Bergische Universitat Wuppertal
  • Leon Wenning, 23, originally from Wuppertal, a fourth-year industrial design student from Bergische Universitat Wuppertal
All agree that their study and coming work experience in this country will provide benefits for a lifetime.

Said Hartmann, “Industrial design is an international profession in which you collaborate with many other people, like customers, engineers and manufacturers. In my opinion, my experience here is very important for the forthcoming working life.”

Fellow exchange student Ivo Wawer agreed, saying that he would encourage any fellow Wuppertal student to take advantage of the exchange opportunity: “Do it. Take part in the exchange program. You will get experience living and working in another culture. In addition, UC will extend your knowledge about design, with alternative values than what is learned at Wuppertal. You will extend your knowledge in technical design, conceptualization, and materials and processes.”

And, said Leon Wenning, “The whole process of coming here and setting up is really flawless and easy. Everyone is super helpful.”

Wuppertal student Patrick Loh is so enthusiastic about the opportunity to study and work in the U.S. that he is not only planning to co-op spring term working for a design employer in Columbus, Ohio, but he will follow that co-op term with another one here in the U.S., working for another design employer over the summer.

He explained, “Because DAAP has a very good reputation, it was for a long time a big dream of mine to study abroad here and to gain experience in the U.S. It’s an amazing chance to take part in UC’s great co-op program, and presenting my work in English is a great learning experience. So far, I love UC, DAAP and the USA.”

Each of the visiting students mentioned how much they appreciate UC’s “awesome campus” and “cool sports facilities.”  

Wuppertal’s Loh similarly encourages UC students to take advantage of the opportunity to study and work in Germany: “Just as UC has co-op relationships with employers, we at Wuppertal also have great collaborations with very famous German companies like Bosch Power Tools, Braun or Kettler for example, in which UC exchange students also could take part.”

UC students currently studying in Wuppertal are
  • Jeffrey Brown
  • Joyce Chiang
  • Jenna Effler
  • Jonathan Grossman
  • Holly Howes