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German Studies, Cornell University

Cornell University Department of German Studies Cornell Univeristy

Prizes and Awards

Curved Triangular Rotor in a Square Chamber

Undergraduate Studies


Undergraduate Prizes and Awards

Department Awards

  • Simmons Award in German: A $75 book award is given each May to the undergraduate who has done the best work in German. Gift under the will of Dr. Lucretia V. T. Simmons.
  • Goethe Prizes: The Goethe Prize, endowed in 1935 by Ludwig Vogelstein, is awarded each April for the best essay on any topic connected to German literature or culture. Freshmen and Sophomores can win up to $250 with an essay (5-10 pages in German or English). Juniors and Seniors can win up to $250 with an essay (7-15 pages in German or English) and Graduate Students can win up to $500 with an essay (10-20 pages in German or English).
  • Book Prizes: Books are donated to the Department of German Studies by the Consulate General of the Federal Republic of Germany and are awarded to outstanding students nominated by their German instructors.

Certificate in German Language Study

The Certificate in German Language Study (level B2+ based on the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages) is issued to recognize substantial language study beyond the GERST 2000 level in the Department of German Studies. Students are awarded the certificate after passing with a grade of B or above in three language or German Studies courses held in German. No more than two of the three courses can be taken with an s/u option. Two of these courses must be at the 3000-level or above. Independent Study may not be counted at all.  Applications are available in the Department of German Studies, 183 Goldwin Smith Hall. Deadline is April 18, 2014. Certificates are awarded at the end of the year award ceremony/reception.


Certification in German

Every April students may register for these Goethe Institute exams:
  • Zertifikat Deutsch als Fremdsprache
  • Deutsch für den Beruf
  • Mittelstufenprüfung
  • Zentrale Oberstufenprüfung

Awards Available to Undergraduates with Background in German

  • The Frederic Conger Wood Fellowship for Research in Europe: The Institute of European Studies sponsors the Wood Fellowship which supports the European Summer Research Program for undergraduate research in Europe. Juniors are invited to submit applications to pursue summer research projects in Europe. Selected students spend the spring semester prior to departure preparing the project under the guidance of an adviser. During the summer, the students spend 6-8 weeks of field study in Europe and on their return write up the results of their research, often in the form of an honors thesis.
  • DAAD (German Academic Exchange Service) Fellowships: One or more DAAD fellowships are awarded directly to Cornell University annually by the German Academic Exchange Service. The fellowships enable graduating seniors and doctoral candidates to study at a German university or to work on a research project in Germany.
  • Fulbright Grants for Graduate Study Abroad: Various awards for graduate study, travel grants, and teaching opportunities for graduating seniors as well as advanced graduate students. Open to U.S. citizens with a good academic record and proficiency in the written and spoken language of the country of interest.