Hello Captains! Welcome back to Spring Semester! Our exchange students from Rosenheim, Germany returned home at the end of last semester but the start of a new one brought Thomas Hoeftberger to CNU from Austria.
Thomas is a student at the University of Applied Science Upper Austria, which is located in the town of Wels in Upper Austria.
Thomas was interested in the exchange program because he wanted to visit another country and learn a new language. He had seen the USA portrayed in movies and wanted to know if the portrayals were realistic. (I hope we busted some of the less than flattering stereotypes).
At CNU he is enrolled in MATH 240, PHYS 202 & 202L, and HIST 122. I asked him which class he enjoyed the most and he diplomatically replied that he liked all of them equally. According to Thomas, the classes he has experienced are very different than university classes back home in Austria. Apparently, there are no quizzes, no homework, and no strict attendance policies. Just one final exam that you show up for at the end of the semester. I can imagine some of us might think that European universities are doing things right, but Thomas asserted that he liked CNU’s system better. He said that there are more opportunities to learn and that you get a better grasp on the material.
After graduation, Thomas plans to continue on at the company he currently works with: TCKT (Transfercenter für Kunststofftechnik). TCKT performs research and development in plastic technology. Right now, Thomas is working on a project to develop the combination of materials to make car bumpers.
Since he hasn’t been on campus long, Thomas hasn’t had the opportunity to travel a lot yet. He said he’s been to Norfolk so far, and he’s gone on trips with the CNU Hiking Club. In his free time, he has been able to catch some basketball games but mostly just hangs out with his roommates.
Finally, I asked Thomas what he would tell his friends about CNU so far. He said the campus is very nice and the people are friendly. The school has a good atmosphere for learning. He especially likes the basketball games; the music provided by the CNU Pep Band makes for a very exciting atmosphere. One thing that has been a disappointment, he said, has been the bars, which close at 2 am. According to Thomas, in Austria, you can literally party till dawn.