Friday, October 30, 2009

Welcome to "Treasure of Central Europe" Jan term Trip

Explore the culture and history of four central European countries: Germany, Czech Republic, Hungary and Austria. The participants will learn about current events and the history of these four countries, especially the history of Germany: during the Nazi time, the fall of the Berlin Wall and the aftermath of German unification.

This trip will offer students the opportunity to visit an important region in Central Europe. They will visit old, and historic German, Czech, Hungarian and Austrian cities such as Berlin, capital of reunified Germany, Heidelberg, Germany's oldest university town; Munich, Bavaria's most important city and the residence of the historic Wittelsbach family. Other stops will include Dachau, Germany's first concentration camp; Vienna, the city of music; Salzburg, the birthplace of the most famous Austrian musician, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Prague, where Mozart first conducted Don Giovanni; and Budapest where McDaniel College has a campus.

Travel Guides & Langauges

Travel Guides on Central Europe: I would recommend buying a Tour Guide for central Europe. The best guides are published by Passport Books, Fodors or Lonely Planet. However, you can share one with a friend or download anything you are interested in from the Internet and bring that along I have 2 old copies of the Lonley Planet travel guide and will them along on Friday.

Many Europeans speak more than one foreign language. English and German are widely spoken in the countries we will visit. You don't need to speak German or any one of the local languages. However, it would be great if you can learn some basic words and greetings in German, Czech, and Hungarian. This will make a huge difference when you meet people on the street, in the bars or restaurants.Here are some links:

Questions, Wishes, etc. Please e-mail me if you have any questions, wishes, other concerns.

Flight Information- TCE 2010

You must make your own travel arrangements to and from the airport in the USA. Make sure you arrive at least 2 hours prior to departure in Washington DC. Call the airline or me one hour before you leave your house. I’ll have the latest flight information (delays, changes, etc.) My home number is: (410)386-9994 and (Cell) 410-967-1669.

Please be at Washington-Dulles Airport at 3:30 p.m. at the latest. Please take into consideration that the roads are jammed at that time, especially the Beltway and I-270. Please drive as early as you can to avoid rush hour (between 2:30 and 4:30 p.m.). In any case, let me give you two ways to get to the airport.

Coming from Frederick or Hagerstown: Take I-270 south to the split, then take 495 to Northern Virginia (right two lanes before I-270 splits). Then take the Dulles Airport Access Rd, exit 12 from the Beltway. Take the Access Rd. Entrance is on the left after you merge with the access Rd. Be careful not to take the Toll Rd. The Dulles Access Rd leads you to the airport. Drive in the airport to Ticketing/ Check In. We’ll fly with Lufthansa. They are located in the main terminal. We will meet in front of the ticketing counter for Lufthansa.
Coming from Baltimore, Delaware or New Jersey: Take I-95 south to the Washington-Beltway (I-495). Take the Beltway toward Silver Spring (Not Richmond or College Park). Follow the Beltway, pass the Mormon Temple on your right hand side, pass I-270, continue on Beltway toward Northern Virginia until you get to the Dulles Airport Access Rd, exist 12 from the Beltway. Take the Access Rd. Entrance is on the left after you merge with the access Rd. Be careful not to take the Toll Rd. The Dulles Access Road leads you to the airport. Drive in the airport to Ticketing/ Check In. We’ll fly with Lufthansa. They are located in the main terminal. We will meet in front of the ticketing counter for Lufthansa.

Departure: All participants will depart in one group with
Lufthansa/ Flight #419
Jan. 1, 2010: 5:80 p.m. (Dulles Airport/ Washington DC)
Jan 2., 2010: Frankfurt: 7:30 a.m.

Return: The participant will fly back from Frankfurt to Dulles in one group with
Lufthansa/ Flight #418
Jan. 14, 2010: 1:00 p.m.
Arrival in Dulles at: 3:50 p.m.

Please make sure to let those who will pick you up know that they MUST check the arrival time with Lufthansa (on-line at or via phone 1-800-399-5838

Course Requirements

This trip has been approved by the Curriculum Committee as a 2-credit course. To receive these 2 credits, you must register for the trip as a Jan-Term 2010 Class. The course number is IDS 1142-01. To receive credit for this trip, you must fulfill the following course requirements:

Part 1: Active Participation in Trip (25% of final grade) You must attend all scheduled tours, lectures and meetings and take active part in conversations and discussions.

Part 2: Choose one of the following alternatives and fulfill the requirements (75%):

Alternative 1: Create your own Blog
  • Your Blog must consists of (a) selected images that you have taken on the trip (a few images from each city we visit) (30%) and (b) at least 9 journal entries (5% each), 6 of which must be reflections about our visits to the 7 cities on our itinerary: Berlin, Dresden, Prague, Budapest, Vienna, Munich and Heidelberg. The first entry must be posted prior to our departure. In this entry, please describe in details why you have signed up for this trip and not another one, what you expect from the trip and what cities/ countries you are looking forward to seeing and why. Your last entry that is due upon your return to the USA is a final reflection on the entire trip: what did you like about the trip, which places, events, etc. and why. 
Alternative 2: Journal & Photography: This consists of 2 parts:
  • Journal (50%): You must write in a journal once a day (at least 10 entries) about what you saw and experienced on that day. Use your imagination; be creative and reflective. Each entry should one page long. You can also draw pictures, add small souvenir items, cards, pictures, etc. The journal will be collected twice: in the middle of trip after our visit to Budapest and on the plane. Please buy a composition book and write your name on it. 
  • Photography (25%): Each student will take photographs for exhibit at McDaniel. Try to focus on something you like (castles, bridges, churches, doors, people, graffiti, Berlin, Dachau, etc.) and make this your project idea. You will choose 10 of your best pictures, enlarge them and put them into a poster collage. These poster collages will be exhibited at McDaniel in the spring semester. You can opt to do a PowerPoint slide show instead with explanations to the pictures
Alternative 3: Video-Journal
  • Your video will consist of footage you will take during the trip, short interviews with select members of the group and also your own commentary and reflections. This is a project for 2-3 students who will have to meet with me before and during the trip so we can start planning for the video and editing it after we have visited each city. I have video editing software on my computer and we would be able to start the editing process on the trip by adding titles, images, music, etc. (25% photography and video quality; 20% quality of interviews; 30% commentary).