Chemnitz, one of Germany’s fastest growing cities, distinguishes itself as a location for high-tech development combined with the spirit of innovation, which made Chemnitz a hub of industrialisation as far back as 150 years ago. This led to Chemnitz’s nickname of “Saxon Manchester” and the parallel industrial history is one of the reasons, why Chemnitz and Manchester became twin cities in 1983. This twinship is the foundation for a vivid exchange of culture and sports between these two cities.
One very popular annual event, organised by the University of Technology Chemnitz, is the International German Language Summer School, a four week language course for students from all over the world. This year for the 43rd time learners of the German language come together on the Chemnitz campus to take part in classes and projects, visit attractions in and around Chemnitz, such as the Augustusburg Castle, the Erzgebirge, which is famous for its traditional wood craft, the Museum of Industry or the renowned Gunzenheimer Art Gallery, which is one of the most important museums of Modern Art in Germany.
For the second year consecutively the City of Chemnitz has sponsored two residents from Manchester to take part in the Summer School. The Deutsch Centre Manchester is the main facilitator of the twinship between Chemnitz and Manchester and liaises with the City of Chemnitz in selecting suitable candidates.
Last year’s participant Rochelle Thamina says: “Being in Germany allows the opportunity to practice speaking in shops and restaurants and being able to order in German. It is a very rewarding experience because being able to communicate and be understood after only having started classes with the Deutsch Centre a few months prior is very motivating. “
Chemnitz is always worth a trip, but it is especially charming during Christmas, when traditional Erzgebirge wood craft is displayed in public places and in many windows.