Whirlwind honors Germany trip reflects on history, memory

Jul 10, 2023Courtney Morris
Honors Program Germany Trip May 2023

Fifteen San Jacinto College students visited pivotal sites in German and world history during the honors program’s first overseas trip since 2018.

From May 18-26, students and three faculty members toured Munich, Nuremberg, and Berlin to cap off the History and Memory in Germany honors class. Their tour highlighted the complexity of interpreting and remembering industrialization, colonization, the Holocaust, world wars, and more.

Dr. Abbie Grubb, history professor and trip coordinator, knew the trip was off to a good start when they arrived in Munich only to find local trains and buses had gone on strike. Students showed their ability to pivot and remain positive.

“What should have been 10 minutes by local public transportation turned into a two-hour walk of over four miles with our luggage,” Grubb said. “The students’ attitudes remained fantastic for the whole thing.”

Among other sites, the group visited Brandenburg Gate, Charlottenburg Palace, Checkpoint Charlie and the Berlin Wall, the Pergamon and Neues Museum, the Nazi Rally Grounds of Nuremburg, Dachau Concentration Camp, and Neuschwanstein Castle.

Despite the whirlwind pace, students took time to stop and reflect.

“In their post-trip reflections, they wrote how much more they understood history when they had the opportunity to stand at places like Dachau Concentration Camp and see where the history took place,” Grubb said.

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