Does soccer “explain the world” as one theory suggests? On the eve of the World Cup soccer tournament, a German professor offers supporting evidence.
Dr. Thomas Schmidt, a professor from Germany who is teaching a business course at UNC Pembroke this summer, said it was a soccer connection that brought him here.
“One of our students played soccer here,” Dr. Schmidt said. “He came back and reported that this is an interesting school. He said we should investigate.”
UNCP and Flensburg University of Applied Science have commenced a partnership with Dr. Schmidt’s arrival on campus.
“A good starting point would be to give a lecture and get to know more about each other,” Dr. Schmidt said. “The goal is to send some students and have exchanges on the professor level. Partnerships take time, and I think there will be some good opportunities.”
Dr. Schmidt is teaching a management information systems course during the first summer session at UNCP. He lectured on campus for two-and-a-half weeks and returned to Germany to teach the remainder of the class online.
Because Germany is the host nation for this year’s World Cup, Dr. Schmidt is looking forward to his return.
“There will be many celebrations all over Germany,” he said.
In UNC Pembroke, Dr. Schmidt believes he found a good match for Flensburg University, which is located in a small city in northern Germany. Flensburg has an enrollment of approximately 6,000 with two academic divisions, business and education.
“We are looking for a university with the same size and structure as we have,” Dr. Schmidt said. “Pembroke is the same size, and you have one of the best organized international offices I have traveled to.”
Dr. Stephen Bukowy, Dr. Schmidt’s host professor and chair of Accounting and Information Technology at UNCP’s School of Business, said the exchange was beneficial on several levels.
“We enjoyed Dr. Schmidt’s visit with us,” Dr. Bukowy said. “I hope he is able to return some day as he provided the students with an alternative viewpoint for class and project discussions. There is also the possibility of some of our professors visiting his college in the future.”
Dr. Schmidt is pleased with his visit to Pembroke, which included bicycle tours of the surrounding countryside and trips to nearby beaches and cities.
“I am very content with my stay here,” he said. “I’ve had a great time, and I am pleased with my students.”
Flensburg University of Applied Science offers international exchange programs with more than 20 international partners around the globe.
“We have several special programs, some in English for students who come to study for a semester or longer,” Dr. Schmidt said. “Many students come to study German language.”
Flensburg offers undergraduate and graduate programs in education and business, including advanced studies in accounting, health care management and supply chain management. The university offers a Ph.D. in education.
A tourist destination, Flensburg is a scenic port city located on a fjord on the Baltic Sea. The university was founded in 1870.