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Profiles: Catherine Green
Name Catherine Green
College Illinois Wesleyan University, Northwestern University
Degree B.A. German and Spanish, M.S.Ed Secondary Education
Current job title National Sales Director
Employer Klett USA, Inc.
Location Chicago, IL

Why did you first start learning German?
I learned German by immersion as a high school exchange student in German-speaking Switzerland. I lived in a village of 400 people 30 km outside of Zurich and attended Gymnasium in Winterthur. My host family decided to speak Hochdeutsch rather than Schwyzertüütsch to me throughout my exchange year to ensure that I would return to the US with usable language skills.

What did you get out of your German studies?
Learning a second language and being able to spend time in foreign countries has made me a more tolerant individual with a global perspective. It has opened doors to personal and professional experiences that I would not have otherwise had and ignited in me a great love of travel.

What influence did German have on your career choices?
German had a direct influence on my career. After graduate school, I became a high school German teacher in the Chicago Public Schools. In 2015, I left teaching to work for Klett, one of the most prominent textbook publishers in Germany.

How do you use German today at home or in your work?
In my current position, I use my language skills and education background to interact with colleagues and customers on a daily basis. In my private life, I use German to communicate with friends and relatives in Switzerland, Austria, and Germany.

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