Notable Faculty & Student Achievements

October 2021

  • Associate Professor of German Erika Berroth was invited to give a lecture and lead a workshop at Sewanee University of the South, contributing to a series of events for German Campus Week on October 8.  Berroth’s talk, “Cultures of Environmentalism in Germany: Learning to Care,” addressed the larger Sewanee community, while the workshop on environmental activism engaged students of German specifically. The event was sponsored by the Embassy of the Federal Republic of Germany, Washington D.C., and the Department of German and German Studies at Sewanee.

  • Associate Professor of German Erika Berroth was invited to be a featured speaker at the Belmont University 20th Annual Humanities Symposium: Reading as a Radical Act, which convened in Nashville, Tennessee, from September 27 to October 4. Berroth’s presentation, “Read to Me! Read with Me! Increasing Awareness of Diversity and Inclusion for Readers and Listeners of All Ages,” addressed the power of reading as a social activity in contemporary German cultures, featuring examples from children’s books, poetry slams, the 20th anniversary of Vienna’s One City–One Book project, and the importance of overcoming the one-inch barrier (i.e., the reluctance to read subtitles of films telling stories from other languages and cultures). Berroth also designed a related quiz that Belmont students took to earn their Wellcore Cultural Well-Being credits.

September 2021

  • Associate Professor of German Erika Berroth hosted the 4th Biannual Joint Conference of the North Texas, Houston, and South Texas Chapters of the American Association of Teachers of German (AATG) September 17–18. The virtual conference brought together over 60 German educators at the high school and college levels, promoting the sharing of scholarship, outreach, mentoring, and networking. Berroth presented a research paper titled “Lies Mir Vor! Lies Mit Mir! Anregungen Zur Inklusion in Kinder- und Bilderbüchern” on current publications for ages three and up that promote empathy around themes of diversity and inclusion for young audiences as well as adult readers through complex connections of images and text and “Mehrfachadressierung”—strategies engaging multiple audiences across generations. Berroth mentored Melina Boutirs ’22, a German and education double major, who presented research completed for her German capstone, “German-language Hip Hop in Modern Language Teaching and Learning: Increasing Social Justice and Diversity in the Curriculum,” that was well-received by teachers seeking to integrate contemporary German music topics into their curricula. 

July 2021

  • Associate Professor of German Erika Berroth presented a research paper and coorganized and comoderated a section of four panels for the XIV Congress of the International Association for German Studies (IVG), which met in hybrid form July 26–31, 2021, in Palermo, Italy. The IVG meets every five years with the aim of promoting international cooperation in the field of German studies. This year’s motto was “Wege der Germanistik in Transkulturellen Perspektiven.“ Berroth’s contribution addresses inclusion and diversity in representations of disabilities in contemporary German cinema. Her paper opened the section “B14: Behinderungen und Herausforderungen: Disability Studies in der Germanistik.”

June 2021

  • Associate Professor of German Erika Berroth presented the paper “Opening Language Learning to Social Justice: Designing an OER German Curriculum” at the virtual Language Education for Social Justice conference and the 37th Summer School of Applied Language Studies hosted by the University of Jyväskylä, Finland, June 1–3, 2021. An international group of scholars, educators, and artists answered central questions: What does social justice have to do with language education? Why do we need to talk about social justice as language teachers, teacher educators, and researchers? How can research look at and beyond language in education with the goal of being a catalyst for critical thinking, democracy, equity, and peace? Berroth’s contribution focused on the collaborative authoring and editing of an open educational resource, Grenzenlos Deutsch , an introductory German curriculum.

April 2021

  • Associate Professor of German Erika Berroth presented a paper at the 74th KFLC: The Languages, Literatures, and Cultures Conference at the University of Kentucky, Lexington, April 22–24, 2021. Her paper “STEM, German, and Dürrenmatt: Interdisciplinary Connections” contributed to the panel “Friedrich Dürrenmatt at 100,” commemorating the Swiss author and public intellectual.

  • Associate Professor of German Erika Berroth earned a materials grant from the German Academic Exchange Service, or DAAD. The German program curriculum and interdisciplinary programs will be enriched through a curated collection of diverse materials on German myths and legends. Berroth is eligible to compete for those grants as she serves as a DAAD Ortslektorin, connecting and coordinating outreach to educators at all levels of instruction.

February 2021

  • Associate Professor of German Erika Berroth received a grant from the German Academic Exchange Service, DAAD. The grant enriches the teaching and learning of German at SU through a curated collection of prominent publications in German literature in 2019 and 2020.

  • Associate Professor of German Erika Berroth participated in a roundtable at the 2021 virtual conference of the Modern Language Association in Toronto, Canada. Berroth was one of four speakers invited to present on the topic “How to Survive as a Small German Program.” The session was sponsored by the American Association of Teachers of German.

November 2020

  • Associate Professor of German Erika Berroth contributed to the joined virtual conference of the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL) and the American Association of Teachers of German (AATG) November 2022, 2020. Berroth offered a session for German educators on developing connections in German instruction to topics in sustainable development with a focus on climate-science information and disinformation literacy. Berroth participated in annual meetings as a member of AATG’s regional and national leadership teams and committees.

  • Associate Professor of German Erika Berroth delivered a workshop for German educators, invited by the Goethe-Institut in Washington, DC, in collaboration with Goethe-Institut Mexico. The workshop on integrating authentic resources into education for sustainable development was part of the virtual conference Unsere Nachhaltige Zukunft  (Our Sustainable Future), November 13 15, 2020. Using resources available at, Berroth introduced an international audience to models for integrating principles of climate-science communication into teaching German language and culture.