Notable Faculty & Student Achievements

May 2022

  • Associate Professor of German Erika Berroth presented an invited webinar for the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages Special Interest Group on Small Undergraduate German Programs on May 4. The webinar, titled “Pragmatic Program-Building Blocks for Small German Programs,” addressed a national audience and offered examples of the what, why, and how of program building, such as developing a signature “best” (e.g., the German program best at producing Fulbright English Teaching Assistant Award recipients), building connections across disciplines and programs, developing a focus on justice issues, and intensifying outreach strategies.

April 2022

  • Associate Professor of German Erika Berroth presented research from her sabbatical project at the virtual conference of the Association for Intercultural German Studies at the University of Zadar in Croatia, held April 19–22. Her paper titled “Ausgewählte Texte aus Lyrik, Essays, und Romanen von Marica Bodrožić mit Kritischen Perspektiven aus den Umweltgeisteswissenschaften” provided an environmental humanities perspective on the literature of migration to the conference theme of intercultural spaces in the Mediterranean.

March 2022

  • Associate Professor of German Erika Berroth increased the German program’s community outreach by serving as a judge for regional and statewide competitions for students of German in secondary education. The regional Sprachfest 2022 and the Texas State German Contest brought together German educators and students across institutions. To increase outreach and networking among German programs, Berroth has accepted invitations to present her work in program leadership and curricular innovation. She will lead an invited webinar for the American Council on Teaching Foreign Languages Small Undergraduate German Programs Special Interest Group in April. She also will deliver the keynote address at the Tennessee World Language Teaching Association Annual Conference later this year. The theme of the conference is “The Future of Languages Is You: Learn and Share.” As a DAAD (German Academic Exchange Service) local representative, Berroth earned a materials grant (700  Euro) from the German foreign office, and students of German will benefit from a curated collection of literary works published in 2021.

Feburary 2022

  • Associate Professor of German Erika Berroth participated virtually in the American Association of Colleges and Universities (AAC&U) 2022 Annual Meeting, which took place January 19–24 in Washington, D.C. Berroth is a member of the Southwestern team of faculty and staff participating in the 2022–2023 Institute on ePortfolios, which offers strategies to broaden student engagement. AAC&U, in collaboration with the Association for Authentic, Experiential, and Evidence-Based Learning (AAEEBL) and the National Association of Student Personnel Administrators (NASPA), is leading the Institute on ePortfolios, utilizing a year-of-engagement model. 

December 2021

  • Associate Professor of German Erika Berroth earned a grant from the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) to participate in the 17th International Convention of German Teachers, which will convene in Vienna, Austria, August 15–20. Berroth will be part of an international group of 30 Ortslektoren, or teachers of German collaborating with DAAD worldwide to promote the study of German language, literature, and culture. 

November 2021

  • Associate Professor of German Erika Berroth was invited by the Goethe-Institut Washington, D.C., to participate in a two-day conference held November 11–12 in Berlin, Germany. The conference brought together representatives from current and potential partner programs to explore participation in a digital transnational education network currently active in Germany, Russia, Ukraine, Georgia, and Austria. Topics included education on sustainable development, peace and conflict studies, and transcultural communication. Through this network, the Goethe-Institut provides a structure for promoting transcultural learning, exchange, and the exploration of shared values. Berroth looks forward to exploring collaborations with Associate Professor of German Liesl Allingham at the University of the South, who was also invited to the conference.

  • Associate Professor of German Erika Berroth participated in the 46th Annual Coalition of Women in German (WiG) Conference, which convened virtually November 4–7. As chair of the WiG Dissertation Prize Committee, Berroth presented the 2020 award to Melissa Elliot for her nuanced work on the narratives of film music in East German DEFA movies. Berroth presented a poster on her collaboration with Head of Special Collections and Archives Megan Firestone in mentoring research assistants to create an open educational resource with documents and artifacts from Uta Merzbach’s estate. Berroth highlighted research on how humanities-based faculty-student research projects, digital-humanities projects, and research assistantships increase opportunities for high impact experiences particularly for students of languages, literatures, and cultures.

October 2021

  • Associate Professor of German Erika Berroth earned a residency at the Deutsches Literatur Archiv and Collegienhaus in Marbach, Germany. The residency is cosponsored by the Deutsche Schillergesellschaft and the Max Kade Foundation. Berroth is completing research on contemporary German-Croatian author Marica Bodrožić, whose recent publication, Pantherzeit, offers poetic reflections on the spring 2020 COVID-19 lockdown in Germany and around the world.

  • 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.