Expert in the City: An Interview with Dr. Manuela Beck from Munich’s Goethe-Institut
March • 28th, 2018
by the Expat in the City Team
Our Expert in the City today: Dr. Manuela Beck
Who are you and what do you do?
My name is Dr. Manuela Beck. I have been the director of Munich’s Goethe-Institut since January 2017. It is the second largest Goethe-Institut language school for German as a foreign language in Germany.
In what way does the Goethe-Institut serve the expat community in Munich and why is this important to you?
Dr. Manuela Beck: We teach German to several thousand customers per year. On offer are courses during the day as well as in the evening. The evening courses, with classes 3 times a week, are almost exclusively booked by expats who live and work in and around Munich. For the most part, they don't need German to master their professional life. However, in order to integrate into everyday life, to be able to participate in Munich’s cultural life and in the local community in general, it is almost essential to speak German. Learning German with us helps them to achieve these goals.
We also offer globally recognized high-quality language certificates. A lot of expats ask to sit those exams either to prolong their work permits or to acquire German citizenship. With our professionally administered exams (and preparatory courses) we support them in this respect as well.
"Munich has so much to offer – it becomes an all-embracing experience once you understand the language."
Do you have some encouraging words/advice for expats in the city?
Dr. Manuela Beck: Walking the streets of Munich, you quickly realize that one in three people has learnt German as an adult. They all mastered it, and so can you! It is worth the effort, because Munich has so much to offer – it becomes an all-embracing experience once you understand the language.
What is your favorite spot in Munich and why?
Dr. Manuela Beck: It is rather difficult for me to choose one spot in particular. If I had to, I would choose the Monacensia. It is part of the city library on the high banks of the Isar. The library, its archive and the museum, located right within the park-like river bank area combine history, literature, architecture and nature in the most beautiful way.
Three tips for expats in the city:
Dr. Manuela Beck: Our next-door neighborhood, Munich’s vibrant district Haidhausen, with its many small retailers and restaurants; a walk along the river; a visit to the Nationaltheater and a guided tour behind the scenes of the theater.
Thank you for your time, Dr. Beck!
"Expats and Experts in the City" is an interview series by Expat in the City. Check it out and see what Munich Expats and Experts would like to share with you!