Ada Abroad: Living and Working in Germany

An online journal recording two years spent as a Fulbright/Pedagogical Exchange Service Teaching Assistant at secondary schools in Germany. (2003-2004 I was in a village near Bautzen; 2004-2005 I will be in Nordrhein-Westfalen.)

Location: Münster, Nordrhein-Westfalen, Germany

I'm an American living in Germany, working as a foreign language assistant at a secondary school. Future plans: getting my Ph.D. (probably in Germanic Linguistics), becoming a professor, living an ethical and meaningful life.

Thursday, May 12, 2005

No News

Once again I've been a lazy blogger and haven't written for a while. This time I have a different excuse: not too busy, no medical emergencies... I've just plain been too nervous.

As most of you know, I applied to renew my contract and spend a second year as a teaching assistant in Germany. (Not at the same school, not in a village, and preferably not within bicycling distance of the Polish border-- I requested to be placed in a university city in the west next time.) When I submitted my application in February, they told me that they would make the decisions about renewals in early May, and that if I didn't receive anything from the organization by mid-May to contact them.

Well, it's May 12th. That's mid-May in my book. And I haven't gotten any news. Every day I check the windowsill outside my apartment several times (since I don't have a real mailbox, that's where the landlords leave my mail). No news. Yesterday I went ahead and emailed the Pedagogical Exchange Service (the organization responsible for the application process). I asked them to please contact me soon, even if all they can tell me at this point is when I might expect the real letter. So today I've been checking my email about as often as a chain smoker lights up. No news.

Is no news good news? Maybe. But it could also be bad news. There is the distinct possibility that they contacted the winners first, and that those of us in the remainders bin are the only ones sitting around waiting for further information.

I have a friend in Bonn who also reapplied. She hasn't heard anything yet, either, but then it's not as important to her-- her boyfriend was accepted to a similar program in Austria next year, and she thinks they'll probably pick Austria over Germany. And since the Pedagogical Exchange Service is also located in Bonn, this might imply that they just haven't mailed any of the letters yet. (The German postal service is a little slower than USPS, but it's not that bad. )

This is as bad as waiting to hear from Fulbright was last year. Maybe worse. You see, if the renewal falls through, I don't really have a back-up plan. Unless you count 'live with your parents and work at some crappy office job that could be performed just as well by someone with an IQ of 85, while simultaneously attempting to convince various Germanic Linguistics programs that you're still promising.' Not my idea of fun...

Although it would still beat the hell out of spending the rest of my life in this village.


Blogger Ada said...

Update: I got a response from the Pedagogical Exchange Service today (per email). Apparently they're a bit delayed in the selection process-- it's just taking place this week. SO, the letters will mailed in the middle of next week, which means I'll actually receive mine sometime during the last week of May. Probably.

11:17 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

More time to be nervous, right?

3:48 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

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10:01 AM  

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