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 Heather Pruessing, MA 

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Heather Pruessing
Assistant Lecturer of American Studies
Room GWZ 3 5.01 | Phone: (0341) 973-7336

http://americanstudies.uni-leipzig.de/faculty/pruessing
heather.pruessing@uni-leipzig.de
 

The Long and Short of It

My roots are in New Jersey, USA: home of Bruce Springsteen, Frank Sinatra, John Stewart, 24-hour-dinners, and the best bagels money can buy. After graduating high school, I packed my bags and headed south to North Carolina to attend Davidson College (A school so tough, future president, Woodrow Wilson, couldn’t make it past his freshman year). Through a Davidson exchange with the University of Würzburg, I got my first taste of living abroad in Germany, and in a surprising turn of events, fell so in love with the country and the language that I threw out my original major (Music) and graduated with a BA in German Studies instead.

In 2006, I was awarded a Fulbright Scholarship that took me to Mittweida, Germany, where I happily spent the year teaching English, researching German Poetry, and perfecting my Sächsisch. Later that year, I was inspired to bring my academic interests full circle and enrolled in the American Studies program at the University of Leipzig. Upon completing my MA, I moved into the private education sector, where I worked as an English trainer, a company recruiter, a TÜV-specialist, a curriculum developer, a teacher-trainer, and a school assistant director.

Teaching

In the private sector, I spent most of my years working for the Berlitz corporation as Assistant Director of Training and Quality. This position was multifaceted and afforded me extensive training, certification and practical experience in the field of English pedagogy. I taught a wide variety of courses spanning large group classes in technical English for gas-production engineers to one-on-one coaching in English negotiations for DAX company managers. Stretching from telecommunications to steel production, I was able to teach and coach students from a large cross section of Saxon industry. I am now thrilled to be funneling these experiences and skills into my courses at ASL.

Research

While at ASL, my research interests centered primarily on food and greening movements within transatlantic contexts. My more recent research has been pedagogy-based.

Community Service

Many of the community service projects I’m most passionate about combine immigration and education. Since 2007, I’ve worked with local schools to help train and prepare young immigrants for their transition into the German school system.  

Selected Publications

My most recent publications have been curriculum design and teaching manuals. Previous to that:

  • With Sebastian Hermann, Alexandra Pitzing, Lisa Sylvia Schönmeier, Lars Weise, eds. aspeers: emerging voices in american studies  1 (2008).
  • “A Twenty-Four-Seven Society’s ‘To-Do’ List: Number 35: Buy Lawn Chair” The Atlantic. Atlantic Media Company, 08 Jan. 2008. Web.

Selected Honors, Awards, Distinctions

Pädigogischer Austauschdienst Teaching Scholarship Recipient

Fulbright Scholar and Alumnus since 2006

Delta Phi Alpha Member since 2006

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