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Young German experiences PCC on cultural exchange

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German exchange student, Markus Hangst

For Markus Hangst, studying at PCC is a whole new experience. In fact, it’s a whole new world.

Hangst, a native of Schramberg, Germany, began the first part of his one-year cultural exchange this fall at PCC. He is part of the Congress-Bundestag Youth Exchange for Young Professionals, administered by CDS International, Inc. Hangst is one of 100 young German professionals, who are studying at 78 colleges around the country.

Hangst, a business major, is taking introduction to investment, leadership skill development, intercultural communications and time management classes at PCC.

"PCC is a huge school," Hangst said. "The classes are so different and there so many campuses. Luckily, I live near Cascade Campus and can take the PCC shuttle to Sylvania. I really like PCC. People here seem to be interested politically and are open to seeing the world."

When he completes his classes at PCC at the end of fall term, he’ll go on to intern at a company for six months. Hangst has had numerous interviews already with local businesses, including Adidas and Intel. Thus far, the laid-back German student has enjoyed his tour of the U.S., which included trips to Chicago, San Francisco, Wisconsin and Kansas.

"I always wanted to go to America," said Hangst, who was sponsored to go on the exchange by Volker Kauder (member of the German parliament and chairman of the CDU Party). "There are so many cultures here. This is my first time to the U.S. and so far it hasn’t been that big of a culture shock."

About James Hill

James G. Hill, an award-winning journalist and public relations writer, has been the Communications Specialist for the Office of Public Affairs at Portland Community College since November of 1999. A graduate of Portland State University, J... more »