Open Campus Against Closed Borders
Open Campus Against Closed Borders sought to welcome to BCB campus refugees, migrants, and asylum-seekers interested in the resources and community that a university has to offer, but without the status and means to enroll in one.
The project hosted bi-monthly salons on campus in which students and refugee participants could gather to partake in sessions of discussion on topics that they found relevant. The salon planned to be concerned with translating the political and philosophical studies we do in liberal arts into conversation and action that is accessible, relevant, and co-constituted by and for our participants; together we hoped to share what is at stake in the things we study abstractly, and respond by developing concrete projects that would reach beyond the boundaries of the classroom. Another goal of the salon discussions was also to practice English and we provided individual tutor sessions for English and German language practice.
The Pankow Theater Company
The Pankow Theater Company ran from 2015-2016 and provided weekly theater workshops in English for German high school students in the local community of Pankow. The theater workshops took place in collaboration with the Pankow Youth Club JUP. The aim of the sessions was to create a comfortable environment for the students to practice their English through theater. Theater is an effective means to not only explore a language but also to build an identity and gain self-confidence. The project concluded with a final presentation in which the project participants presented for parents, relatives and students. Each session was co-lead by volunteers from BCB providing an opportunity for BCB students to get involved with an independent student-run project and with the Pankow community.
Tell Your (Hi)Story
Tell Your (Hi)Story is a project that ran from 2016 to 2017 with the aim of strengthening the understanding of other people’s cultures and views. It saw that our knowledge and understanding about political or historic events of other parts of the world often depend on our own social, political, and geographical background. As part of an international community at Bard College Berlin and the multicultural city of Berlin, the project provided a platform and a safe space for the campus and the college’s surrounding community to share aspects of their cultures, to represent their heritage, or to tackle controversies about their history or politics that they felt had been misrepresented or not addressed. Through the medium of storytelling and discussion, “Tell your (Hi)Story” strove to help recognize the diversity of the student body on a level deeper than simply knowing the number of countries they came from.
Bard Berlin Goes Green!
Bard Berlin Goes GREEN! was an initiative established in the academic year 2015-2016 to make us all aware of what can be done to live in a more environmentally sustainable way and to encourage the BCB community to change small habits to become more eco-friendly. We all come from different countries and cultures and it is natural for us all to have different levels of environmental education. Now that we all belong to the same community of Berlin and Bard College Berlin, it is time to get on the same page. When referring to the environment, we sometimes relate to the issue of recycling only but there is so much more we can do! Turning the lights off when you go out of your dorm, unplugging a device that permanently consumes energy, or using the other side of your printed page – these are only some examples. Changing small things not only makes the campus more environmentally friendly, it also allows us to live in a cleaner and more organized space.