July 19, 2017
They come from the United States and Germany: in the next three weeks, 30 students will grapple with the topic of sustainability during the “Transatlantic Summer Academy”. The event, starting on 20 July, is a cooperation between Jacobs University, InterCultur and AFS Intercultural Programs USA. This is the third time it is taking place on the campus of the international university in Bremen.
Intercultural elements, exchanging different viewpoints and learning from each other are integral to the Academy. Climate change or the collapse of entire ecosystems may be global topics, but how they are handled often depends on how things are seen at the national level. What do we mean by sustainability and how pervasive is it? Waste separation, for instance, is not very common in the United States, but the country is a pioneer in terms of automotive electromobility.
The program includes both theoretical and practical elements, with workshops and seminars alternating with a lecture series presented by experts on topics such as renewable energy or sustainability in everyday life. Issues relating to international energy and environmental policy are also being discussed. Two thirds of the students aged between 18 and 28 years are US Americans with participants hailing from a variety of disciplines.
Numerous excursions are an important part of the Academy and also one of its highlights. Participants have the chance to visit Klimahaus Bremerhaven, a meteorological center, take a trip to the Wadden Sea, a World Heritage site, and climb up the Hamburg “Energy Hill”. The Academy is funded by the German Program for Transatlantic Encounters of the Federal Ministry for Economic Affairs and Energy.