Arabic Talent Show Fall 2018

I have always enjoyed OU’s Arabic Flagship Program and its semi-annual talent show. This year Norman’s “Sisters” restaurant catered the invent. I enjoyed a heaping plate of hummus, tabouli, chicken schwarma, and of course Baklava! I enjoyed the live performances from the colloquial class and of course the plethora of video projects that are always filled with lots of humor. The audience was filled with regular attenders as well as new faces in the program. I really like the video with the students from the second semester class. The humor and content meshed nicely together. The quality of the production also had people wondering whether or not the students had produced it with a film studies student. Altogether, I’m already looking forward to next year’s Talent Show!


German Club’s Weihnachtsbäckerei

Ich habe mit Vanessa Erat die Weihnachtsbäckerei gehostet. Umgefahr 18 TeilnehmerInnen haben unseres Event besucht. Vanessa hat vier unterschiedliche Teige mitgebracht. Wir haben die Zutaten bei Aldi und Walmart zusammen gekauft. Vanessa hat deutsches Essen bei Aldi gefunden und sie hat ein paar Taschen von “Winternacht Gefüllte Herzen Zartbitter” gekauft. Sie war eckt glücklich!!  Wir haben die öffentliche Küche in Walker tower benutzt. Sie hat gut geklappt. Die Teige waren für traditionelle Süßigkeiten aus Österreich. Da war Lebkuchen, Vanillekipferl, Mürbteigkese, und Husarekrapferl. Die TeilnehmerInnen haben die Teige gut ausgerollt und ausgeschnitten. Da war Schneemann, Rentiere, und Weihnachtsbäume. Wir haben die Süßigkeiten gut verziert mit Schokolade und Streusel, die gut geschmeckt haben. Ich habe viele neue Wörter für die Küchengeräte gelernt. Zum Beispiel das Ausstechförmchen, das Nudelholz, und die Oblaten. Wir haben ganz viel Spaß bei der Weihnachtsbäckerei gehabt. Ich freue mich auf nächstes Jahr! Aber Ich werde Vanessa vermissen 🙁


Paper Airplanes

This past semester I have tutored English as a second language with a refugee from Syria. My student is currently living in Jordan and has sought to improve his English to better his employment opportunities. We have met once a week this semester to work on grammar, speaking, listening, and writing. I have really come to appreciate his efforts to learning English. Although he currently lives in Jordan he would like to one day return to Syria and resume his life as normal. Unfortunately the current situation has made that a great challenge. Through the curriculum we have been able to foster conversations that have brought us both to a greater understanding of the world and the position we hold within it. Altogether, Paper Airplanes has offered me a new perspective on humanity and allowed me to better comprehend the challenge of navigating the human experience through the lens of a displaces person.


Searching for an International Internship

Looking for an internship abroad can be a daunting task. Thankfully, the resources of OU’s career services have made the process a lot more approachable. For instance, the “Passport” tab on hand shake offers a database of thousands of jobs and internships with international locations. I was able to find an IT position in Germany that fits nicely with my Major and work experience. Here is my cover letter for the position. A good start to a hopefully awesome opportunity!

Dear Mr. H,

I recently spoke with Mr. Sebastian Slack, a recruiter for the sales department at Procter & Gamble, and he suggested I submit my résumé to your office. With my studies in International Business and Management Information Systems, I am confident that I am qualified for the Informational Technology Internship (IT 0000****) in Hesse, Germany.

Prior to attending university, I was an intern with the Swiss manufacturing firm, Endress & Hauser, in Maulburg, Germany. I became experienced in the process optimization philosophy known as Kaizen. Our department made over 2,300 improvements to the production line by working closely with engineers and production personnel.

I wish to continue developing my job skills by working for a larger company and utilizing my IT knowledge. The data analytics that the position offers interests me greatly. My English and German skills will also contribute to the international focus of the internship.

My resume contains additional information about my volunteer activities and certifications. I will contact your department next month to see whether we can further talk about my qualifications and internship options. Thank you, and I look forward to meeting you soon.

Mit freundlichen Grüßen,

Thomas Heinrich


Choosing a Host Family

I’m preparing for a semester abroad and decided to search for a host family. I decided to send a flyer with my basic info to schools in my study abroad location. Two families responded and I was able to Skype (in German) with both of them. I look forward to living with my new host family from March-July!


Heinrich Poster


Budae Jjigae

What is budae jjigae?

Budae means army base and jjigae is stew. This stew was created during the Korean War when fresh food was scarce and packaged food from America was abundant. Budae jjigae  consists of kimchi, onion, tofu, dangmyeon (sweet potato starch glass noodles), ramyeon noodles, baked beans, hotdogs, and Spam. Although this sounds like a weird combination, these ingredients strangely worked well together.

As mentioned in my previous post, my OU cousin and I had originally gone to Korean House for budae jjigae but were told they were out. We decided to make our own at home. On Thursday, my roommate, my OU cousin, and I went grocery shopping and were happy to find that we could get most things we needed for the stew. When we finished prepping and cooking everything, the amount we made was enough to feed at least six people; we had overestimated how much dangmyeon we needed. It was delicious and even though we tried to eat as much as we could, it was just too much.

After eating, we spend an hour watching Youtube videos, mostly throwback Kpop songs. We even tried to do karaoke but quickly realized we were being too loud. Although we couldn’t sing our hearts out, we had fun hanging out together. I will miss her when she goes back to Korea in December.


Korean House

This semester I have decided to join OU cousins again. My cousin is from South Korea, and after being in America for a few months, she missed Korean food. We went to Korean House as it was the closest restaurant to Norman. After a 30 minute Kpop karaoke drive, we arrived. Although we had wanted budae jjigae (roughly translated as army base stew), we were told they were out of ingredients for it. So we settled for naengmyeon (cold buckwheat noodles in a spicy sauce) and dakgaejang (shredded chicken soup). We also ordered kimbap (rolls of rice, meat, and assorted vegetables). It was a delicious meal that made her and me miss Korea even more. We had fun talking about Kpop, something we both love, and things we did in Korea. After our meal, we went home full and happy. We promised to meet up again and make budae jjigae next time.


Cultural Diplomacy with Slater Rhea

On October 3rd, I attended Slater Rhea’s talk about how he practices cultural diplomacy in China through his career as a folk singer. He is OU alum who upon graduation moved to China to become a singer. He talked about how he learned Chinese through listening to music and eventually started singing those songs in shows on campus. His story is unique because it shows that there are many career paths one can take and that life does not have to be lived traditionally. Through his singing career in China, he has been able to bring cultural awareness of certain American topics to that country. He in turn has also learned many aspects of Chinese culture and life.


Common phases

So, I have taken five semesters of Spanish and let me tell you speaking to Spanish speaker outside of a classroom is so hard. When I went to Peru I was so lost, everyone spoke so fast and I found out that words I was told were universal were in fact not so universal at all. So I enjoyed the crash course on travel Spanish. I though the speaker was very funny and the phases he went over were very useful. There were even some that I wish I had known before I went abroad it would have made talking to local merchants an easier process. I think it is very important to at least know some common phases of the country you are vising especially if the language is not one you are fluent in.

The cold war and beyond

This was a very informative talk. I enjoyed listening to Dr. Fishel and appreciated his insight on the topic at hand. The most I knew about the cold war was that it was between the United States and Russia. However, neither country ever actual fought each other they just had other countries fight and supplied the opposing sides with weaponry. My memory on what happened once this war ended is a little fuzzy though. But thanks to Dr. Fishel discussion this seemed to feel in the gaps. During this part of the lecture series he discussed peace keeping the ismalist threat, North Korea and the next competitor china.All in all I enjoyed the lecture and look forward to learning more about the cold war hopefully they have more discussion on this next semester.