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Isaac Schendel

Class of 2009
Major/Minor
English, Modern Languages

Literature and the German language provided Isaac Schendel ‘09 with a rich and rewarding experience at Washington College. In the upcoming year he will continue to explore his passions when he travels to Germany on a Fulbright Teaching Assistantship.

The Fulbright program is a competitive international education exchange program sponsored by the U.S. government. During his time in Germany, Schendel will teach English in the equivalent 7-12 grade levels.

Schendel spent his junior year abroad in the College’s exchange program with the Johannes Gutenberg Universität in Mainz, where he took linguistics and literature courses intended for native speakers. Graduating Phi Beta Kappa, he holds a degree in German Studies and English, and takes a special interest in medieval literature.

“Washington College’s departments have encouraged me to be creative in mixing fields to look at things from different perspectives,” he maintains. He feels lucky to have been mentored by three professors in particular—James Martin, Joachim Scholz, and Corey Olsen, who supported him in his studies. “Not many people are aware of a medieval German literary tradition, but given the very strong academic nature of the German program, I had the resources and the opportunities to study what I was interested in,” he explains.

On his return to Mainz, Schendel will speak with German natives, especially teenagers, in the hopes of developing a comprehensive understanding of the “German self-image,” something he considers an “elusive and complicated topic.” He says: “I’m looking forward to seeing how this newer generation views itself, its country and aspects of their culture.”  

Upon his return, Schendel will enter University of Minnesota’s German Studies program to which he has already been accepted. He knows that the teaching experience and language skills he will earn in the program will be invaluable; however, he also anticipates another benefit. “I’ll improve my ability to interact with people on a one-on-one basis, which is absolutely crucial to the graduate school experience, given my role there as a teaching assistant,” he anticipates. 

Excited by the opportunity the fellowship provides, Schendel applauds the benefits of learning a second language. “If you learn a language to learn about its culture, history and art, you’re only doing a favor to yourself as a lifelong student of the liberal arts.”

German Major Wins Fulbright

Literature and the German language provided Isaac Schendel ‘09 with a rich and rewarding experience at Washington College. In the upcoming year he will continue to explore his passions when he travels to Germany on a Fulbright Teaching Assistantship.

The Fulbright program is a competitive international education exchange program sponsored by the U.S. government. During his time in Germany, Schendel will teach English in the equivalent 7-12 grade levels.

Schendel spent his junior year abroad in the College’s exchange program with the Johannes Gutenberg Universität in Mainz, where he took linguistics and literature courses intended for native speakers. Graduating Phi Beta Kappa, he holds a degree in German Studies and English, and takes a special interest in medieval literature.

“Washington College’s departments have encouraged me to be creative in mixing fields to look at things from different perspectives,” he maintains. He feels lucky to have been mentored by three professors in particular—James Martin, Joachim Scholz, and Corey Olsen, who supported him in his studies. “Not many people are aware of a medieval German literary tradition, but given the very strong academic nature of the German program, I had the resources and the opportunities to study what I was interested in,” he explains.

On his return to Mainz, Schendel will speak with German natives, especially teenagers, in the hopes of developing a comprehensive understanding of the “German self-image,” something he considers an “elusive and complicated topic.” He says: “I’m looking forward to seeing how this newer generation views itself, its country and aspects of their culture.”

Upon his return, Schendel will enter University of Minnesota’s German Studies program to which he has already been accepted. He knows that the teaching experience and language skills he will earn in the program will be invaluable; however, he also anticipates another benefit. “I’ll improve my ability to interact with people on a one-on-one basis, which is absolutely crucial to the graduate school experience, given my role there as a teaching assistant,” he anticipates.

Excited by the opportunity the fellowship provides, Schendel applauds the benefits of learning a second language. “If you learn a language to learn about its culture, history and art, you’re only doing a favor to yourself as a lifelong student of the liberal arts.”

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