Meredith Lemke, Lead Betreuer

My name is Meredith Lemke and I am a former participant of Virginia German Foreign Language Academy 2017! I was inspired to become a Deutschakademie Betreuerin by my excitement to share my interests, knowledge, anecdotes, and passion for Germany with motivated students. Attending the Deutschakademie opened so many opportunities for me by raising my confidence in speaking German and by solidifying my interest in Germany and International Relations. Two of my Deutschakademie Betreuerinnen inspired me to apply and attend the Congress Bundestag Youth Exchange, an 11 month study abroad program in Germany, from 2018-2019. Now I am studying International Relations, taking German courses, and teaching German 102 as a Teacher’s Assistant at the College of William & Mary. I am also the head editor for William & Mary's German Newspaper. Die Zeitung. I am very passionate about German culture, music, diversity, politics, and of course the German language itself. I learned so much about German culture by meeting new people in Germany and by integrating myself into a German family and school. Those experiences drive me to share the many interesting sides of German life and the interesting similarities and differences between American and German culture! In 2017, I was inspired by the interests and stories my Betreuerinnen shared. Now I cannot wait to help create the same wonderful experiences and motivation I received in 2017 for a new group of students.
Doan Bui, Betreuer

Hallo! My name is Doan (pronounced like Dawn), and I am a senior student studying biochemistry and German at Washington and Lee University. I love both science and language learning because science challenges my critical-thinking skills while languages enable me to engage in meaningful discourse with others. I have been learning German since high school, and I have had the opportunity to study as an exchange student in Berlin and Bayreuth. While abroad I picked up many nuances that I hope to share with students to improve both language and cultural understandings. I love listening to German pop music and watching German films. My current favorite German series is Dark from Netflix. I am excited for the 2021 Deutschakademie and to meet everyone!
Eva Nelson, Betreuer

Hi! My name is Eva Nelson and I am a rising senior at Christopher Newport University. I have been involved with the Virginia Governor's Academy for many years now, first as a student, and now going on my third year as a counselor. I am very passionate about the German language and culture and am so excited for yet another fun filled summer of learning and speaking the language. A few things about me are that I love baking, taking walks and Broadway musicals.
Tiernan Gatsby, Betreuer

My name is Tiernan Gatsby, and I'm so excited to be a Betreuerin for this year's Deutschakademie! I am a rising sophomore at the College of William & Mary studying Environmental Policy and International Relations. Though I didn't participate in the academy when I was in high school, I learned to speak German during my foreign exchange year in Germany through the Congress-Bundestag Youth Exchange. This opportunity allowed me the chance to live in Germany and become intimately familiar with the German culture and language. Additionally, I learned firsthand how effective total immersion is for language learning- I can't wait for you to see that, too!

My year abroad instilled in me a passion for German, and I am so grateful for the chance to pass that on to you. I look forward to a wonderful 3 weeks with you all!

Natalie McGhee, Betreuer

My name’s Natalie and I’m a rising sophomore at Georgetown University majoring in Linguistics! This is my first year as a Betreuerin and I’m super excited to get to share my passion for German language and culture with you all this summer! I was a participant of the VA Governor’s Spanish Academy in 2018, but since I was never a part of the German Academy in high school this is going to be a completely new experience for me :). The Spanish Academy is actually what led me to German, because that’s where I learned about the Congress Bundestag Youth Exchange (CBYX) program that sends 250 US high school students to Germany each year. I applied for and completed that exchange and I loved it so much that I decided to continue learning German at my college and to come back to Washington and Lee to try to give you guys as amazing of an experience as I had! Right now, I’m taking two German literature classes, one about love in German literature and one about murder and insanity in literature, as well as an American Sign Language class.