Concise Encyclopedia of Tufts History
Tufts in Tubingen, 1965
The Tufts in Tubingen program, founded in the fall of 1965, was originally designed to serve as a graduate program for students planning to teach German in American colleges and universities. An undergraduate program was added in the fall of 1967, allowing juniors with third year level proficiency in German to participate.
The Tubingen program, which accepts up to twenty students a year, is integrated with Eberhard-Karls Universitat in Tubingen. Founded in 1477, Eberhard-Karls is one of the oldest and most respected universities in Germany. The year long program not only allows students to experience German university life, but also provides numerous opportunities for travel around Germany over the course of the year, including planned excursions to Berlin, and even the option of a semester at Jena in the former East Germany.
Students, selected by the German department, were originally housed with German families, but now are housed in single rooms at the university. They are required to take an intensive three-week course in German before their departure, and then remain in Germany through the second, or summer, semester.
At its inception, Tufts administrators felt that the German university experience would be too difficult for American college students, and hence only the graduate program was founded. Qualified graduate students took a full year of courses in Tubingen, and then returned to Medford to complete comprehensive exams and finish writing theses. After a year, however, administrators decided it was important to allow undergraduates the experience as well.
Tufts in Tubingen has survived not only a week long student strike in the fall of 1976, but also the fall of the Berlin Wall, which caused a huge influx of East German students. As of 2000, Tufts in Tubingen remains a popular program, accepting students from all majors who can prove proficiency in German.
Source: TAR, TD, OBS, TW