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How to Study Abroad in Berlin, Germany

view of the city of Berlin, GermanyBerlin, Germany is a beautiful city with a rich history that dates back to the 13th century. Today, it is home to almost 3.5 million people and is the capital city of Germany. It is also a very green city, with approximately 33 percent of the city being made up of forests, gardens, lakes, and parks. It seems like something new is always going on in Berlin, which makes an interesting location to study abroad in. Here are our tips for the things you must do and see while you are studying abroad in Berlin.

1. Enjoy a Long Night at the Museums. The Long Night of Museums originated in Berlin in 1997, and now it is celebrated in more than 120 other cities around the world. During the Long Night of Museums, you can buy one entrance pass and then visit various museums until late into the night (usually the festivities end around 2:00am in Berlin). Tickets are not expensive (usually under 15 Euros) and will allow you to see impressive museums such as the Kulturforum and Gemaldegalerie under very unique conditions.

2. Feel like royalty at the Schoss Charlottenburg. This palace was built for Queen Sophie-Charlotte and is the last standing palace that belonged to the Hohenzollern royal family. It is also the only royal residence in Berlin. When you visit this palace, you have to see the New Wing, which is home to some fantastic examples of Rococo extravagance, and the contrasting winter chambers of Friedrich Wilhelm. The gardens surrounding the palace are also beautiful. This would be a good place to go on a date because strolling through the gardens can be quite romantic.
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How to Study Abroad in Munich, Germany

Munich's Church of Our LadyMunich, Germany, is the third largest city in Germany and home to 1.35 million people. It is the capital of Bavaria, Germany, and was the host city of the 1972 Summer Olympics. It is a historically rich city that is currently doing very well in the areas of economics and social innovation. It is a great place to study abroad if you want to learn to speak German and experience the Germanic culture; sadly, it is also considered to be the most expensive city to live in in Germany, which can make it unappealing to students who are living on a tight budget.

If you have decided that you are going to study abroad in Munich, there are still a lot of cool things you can see and do that will not break the bank. Here is a list of some of my favorite things to do in Munich:

1. Go to the English Garden (Englischer Garten). This is not just a large garden of the English variety, like it’s name implies. In fact, it has representative gardens for several countries. There is a Greek temple, a Japanese tea garden, and a Chinese pagoda. The first time I went here was on a sunny day with friends. We returned several more times to have picnics in various parts of the park. This is also a good place to do your homework or go for a run. Basically, if you want to be outside in Munich during the nice weather and feel like you have escaped from the big city for a while, you should go the English Garden.

2. Visit the Royal Palace, Nymphenburg Palace. This gorgeous palace and it’s ground were built between the years of 1664 and 1675. The Baroque artworks inside the palace are absolutely beautiful; remember to look at the ceiling when you go into the palace or else you might miss some of the most beautiful works of art including the Steinerner Saal. The gardens around the palace contain two lakes, various fountains, and many pavilions where you can stop and rest in the shade. My favorite part of the Nymphenburg Palace is the Amalienburg, a hunting lodge that was constructed for Maria Amalia. This smaller, pink building is home to the Hall of Mirrors, something that you absolutely must see if you are going to the Nymphenburg Palace.

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How to Study Abroad in Vienna, Austria

st. stephen's cathedralVienna is the capital of Austria and is the largest city in the nation and the 10th largest in the European Union with a metropolitan population of 2.4 million people. The official language of the country is German, which makes Vienna a good place to study abroad if you want to learn the language. Vienna is also a good place to study if you are interested in art history, architecture, or international relations.

So besides studying, what should you do if you are studying abroad in Vienna, Austria? Here are some of our tips for getting the most out of your study abroad experience in Vienna:

1. Listen to the music. Vienna has been home to many musical geniuses, including Mozart, Beethoven, Brahms, and Haydn. There are many monuments dedicated to these musicians, as well as the Haus deer Musik, an interactive museum dedicated to music and musicians. There are also live musicians playing in the streets on most days. Throw them a coin or two and keep the tradition alive for future generations of musicians.

2. Visit the beautiful Schonbrunn Palace.
The Schonbrunn Palace is the former summer residence for the Royal Family in Austria. In the 1960s, it was converted into a museum and has been a major tourist attraction since then, but don’t let the hoards of tourists keep you away from this UNESCO World Heritage Site. This palace contains 1,441 rooms and demonstrates the wealth of the Habsburg monarchy. The Holy Roman Emperor Maximllian II purchased the land where the palace would be built; his original intention for the land was to be used as a recreational hunting ground. Today, it is home to the beautiful palace and many gardens. My favorite part of the Schonbrunn Palace is the hedge maze in the gardens; it took me a while to find it, but the search was part of the fun.

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German Universities Have Higher Enrollment Rates Than Ever Before

Professor Merle Hummrich teaches a very popular class at Wolfgang Goethe University in Frankfurt, Germany. When Hummrich first started teaching the class, she limited its enrollment to only 50 students. However, as the class has grown in popularity and as enrollment numbers have also increased, so has the number of students who are trying to get into the class each semester. This semester, 400 students showed up on the first day, and because there were not enough seats in the classroom, many ended up sitting on the floor or standing through the lecture.

Another class that has been experiencing a dramatic inflation in the number of students who are trying to enroll is Professor Benjamin Ortmeyer’s class about education during the Nazi era. Ortmeyer’s classroom was designed to hold only 500 people, but 720 students are currently enrolled in his class and about 600 show up every week.

This type of over-enrollment is becoming quite common at many universities in Germany. More German students are going to college in order to reap the life benefits that a higher education offers. Other factors include the abolition of mandatory military service and a reduction in the length of the standard high school curriculum.

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