BELTON, Texas—The University of Mary Hardin-Baylor (UMHB) recently signed a letter of intent with the Johanniter Academy of Germany for a three-year international student exchange program. Members of UMHB traveled to Germany in March to begin this relationship with an official ceremony attended by the US Consulate from Leipzig and administrators from the Academy.
This student exchange program is possible thanks to a grant from the German Apprenticeship Training Exchange (GATE) Foundation. According to the Foundation, studying abroad improves language skills and promotes personal development and professional prospects.
"Education projects are peace projects. They encourage exchange and respect and enable mutual understanding," said Lars Menzel, CEU of Johanniter Academy in Leipzig. "Today, these values are more important than ever. And that's why I'd like to take this opportunity to wish the project – although from today on, it won't be a project anymore, but a friendship – lots of success. All participants, teachers, students, and pilots have fun, success, and God's rich blessings."
Approximately six UMHB students from nursing, teacher education, and social work will be included in the first-year cohort through this exchange program. They will join six German students to gain professional training for two weeks at the Johanniter Academy in Leipzig, Germany, at the end of the fall 2023 semester. While in Germany, the selected UMHB students will experience German campus life, attend courses, and shadow their partners in field placements. In the spring of 2024, the German students will visit UMHB for two weeks, spending time on campus, in class, and shadowing the UMHB students in the cohort.
"We could not be more excited about our partnership with Johanniter. The experiences our students will encounter through this partnership will be incredibly rich," said Dr. Stephen Baldridge, Dean of UMHB's College of Humanities and Sciences. "Students will see their vocation from a global perspective, use their skills in a completely new context, serve others, and use their passions in ways they would never have without this exchange. I can't think of a more perfect way for students to find their true calling than an experience like this."
Located in Leipzig, Germany, Johanniter is an independently operated educational institution. In addition to vocational training, they offer a broad portfolio of advanced training and further education in health, education, and social services. A faith-based school with programs similar to UMHB, they are an ideal international exchange partner.
Applications are currently open for the first UMHB cohort and must be submitted by April 28. Final selections will be made by the end of May. For more information about this opportunity or to apply, contact Dr. Stephen Baldridge at email@example.com.