A few quirks (or annoyances) about Germany

I’ve been back to Germany for more than a week now. For as nice as it is to sleep in one’s own bed, eat Mum’s food, and indulge in sausages and potatoes, there are undoubtedly a few annoyances that immediately caught my eye (and continue to do so). Here’s just a short list of them, and I guess I’ll update these as I spend more and more time here:

  • Germans don’t press the “Close Door” button in elevators
  • Few people actually cross a street as soon as cars have stopped. Instead people wait for the traffic light to turn green.
  • People talk on the phone in buses. Maybe the problem here is that I’m just not able to understand what Chinese people say on buses, but it sure is somewhat annoying to discuss the minutiae of someone’s grocery list.
  • Public toilets in train stations or at highway stops are not so public after all. You might have to pay between 50ct or and 1 Euro. In my view, that’s just ridiculous. If you can’t make enough money with your core business to offer such basic necessities to your customers, you might want to reconsider the viability of your business model.
  • Ain’t no such thing as free water. Or you have to ask for it. What makes matters worse is that drinks are ridiculously expensive. Paid 3.8 EUR for a large (.5 liters) “Spezi”…
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Interview Preparation

*Say what you will about competency-based interviews (e.g. that they are ineffective, biased, and that only extroverts do well in them) but as a matter of fact they are widely used. And they can be tough. When I recently interviewed with one major investment bank I was astounded at how the interview went down. At one point I wondered whether this was still an interview or an interrogation. This was especially surprising to me since I applied to only a junior position, and here I was, having two 2-on-1 interviews, each about 30 minutes long.

In any case, this situation has really highlighted the importance of preparation. That’s why today I’m presenting to you a work-sheet for your pre-interview self-assessment. From my experience, employers’ questions will usually revolve around the following “dimensions”:

  • Leadership
  • Teamwork
  • Conflict Management
  • Dealing with Problems
  • Creativity
  • Multitasking
  • Flexibility
  • Integrity (and Honesty)
  • Diligence

What I suggest for pre-interview preparation is to go over all the information you have provided to the employer. That can include your CV and Cover Letter, but beware that any respective online form is at least potentially also in the interviewers’ hands. Scrutinise each activity from each of the above angles. This shouldn’t come too hard to you, but here is an example:

Assume you were the President of the Chess Society in your freshman-year at university. Briefly answer the following questions (in bullet-points), which any interviewer could quite possibly ask:

  • In your position as the President of the Chess Society, when and how have you lead a group of people?
  • I assume that as President of the Chess Society you had to work with your other committee members – how did you do that?
  • Tell me about a situation when there was conflict among the Executive Committee of the Chess Club and how you, as the President, handled it?
  • How did you deal with problems in your function as President of the Chess Society?
  • Have you ever taken a creative approach to an issue when you were President of the Chess Society?
  • How did you manage to multitask between school obligations and society obligations from the Chess Society?
  • Can you tell me about a situation when you showed great flexibility as the President of the Chess Society?
  • When was there a lack of integrity among the Chess Society, and how did you deal with it?
  • Can you tell me about a time when you should have been more diligent in your work as the President of the Chess Society?

I recommend you to use bullet-points in answering your own questions, because you will then naturally avoid giving ‘canned answers’ in the actual interview. Nonetheless, it probably doesn’t hurt going over the preparation sheet I’ve compiled for you with a friend.

 

 

 

*: This is actually a repost of an older post of mine on my old blog. Nonetheless, I still believe it’s worthwhile reading!

 

Statistics Matter. It’s time for more!

Up to this date, I vividly recall my first (business) Statistics-course at HKUST (Hong Kong University of Science and Technology). It was gruelsome for a number of reasons:

  • I simply did not understand certain concepts the teacher was conveying (or trying to). Luckily my classmates and I could rely on Khan-academy, but at times I still wasn’t sure on how I was doing in this course.
  • I did not see the relevance of many of the concepts. How did they even relate to my field of study? When would I be using them?
  • The only motivation to study were the two midterm exams and the final exam. Those exams were open-notes (one sheet of A4-paper) and open-book, respectively, so I felt a (probably wrong) sense of security.

After the final exam in December 2011 I was determined to not deal with Statistics again (at least in academics), and I even sold my book to a junior-student.

It wasn’t before I came to National Chengchi University (NCCU) as an exchange student that I took another, second course in Statistics (adequately named Statistics II). I really loved that course. It’s been a great ride, for a couple of reasons:

  • This time around, the teacher encouraged us to dig deep into the assumptions of various statistical tests and distributions, and challenge them.
  • This time around, I actively used Excel to solve assignments, which in and of itself is a great learning experience.
  • The hard and less-common concepts make the more-common concepts seem easier.

I really wouldn’t want to miss taking this course, and I am grateful for this opportunity to expand my background in Statistics. For one, because businesses rely on an ever increasing number of data. Let’s face it, most of us will have to deal with data in our professional lives. It has been said that data-scientists are the “sexiest job” of the 21st century. I guess you don’t need to be sexy yourself, but who doesn’t want to be able to talk to and understand sexy people? And finally, statistics can help us make better decisions. When businesses generate incredibly vast amounts of data every day, isn’t it somewhat fair to assume that the answer is already contained? Or at least a hint or two? If it’s possible to effectively and efficiently dig through these amounts of data, come up with results, and make decisions based on what you’ve found, then I firmly believe that our decisions will be better in a large number of instances.

It’s time for more Statistics at university! Let’s enroll!

Studying at HKUST in Hong Kong

Note: You may check out my original answer to this Quora.com question here. I’ve changed it a bit for this blog, but the key-points remain valid.

After graduating from a German high-school in 2011, I decided to enroll in a 3-year full-time program at the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology (HKUST). I have spent three complete semester at HKUST so far, and I am now participating in the exchange program at National Chengchi University, Taiwan.

 

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HKUST 
General Remarks:

  • This relatively young university (the first class graduated in 1994) is rated as one of the top three universities in Hong Kong, the others being the University of Hong Kong (HKU) and the Chinese University of Hong Kong (CUHK). Comprising of three major schools (Engineering, Science, Business&Management) and a smaller School of Social Science & Humanities, the university tends to claim that it outranks HKU and CUHK wherever they/we compete. Hence, for the subjects HKUST offers, the school enjoys a strong reputation, especially in the Asian region (I’ve talked to plenty of people in Taiwan and China, and many have heard of this school. Its academic position seems to be well recognized within the region)
  • HKUST offers top-notch facilities in almost all aspects: strong and working Wi-Fi around the campus, a modern library, media-rooms, access to countless research databases, computer-access, a digital card-system, a learning-platform, etc. etc.
  • HKUST’s student body comprises of three significant groups: Local students, students from Mainland China, and international/foreign students (those include a significant number of exchange students). While I have discussed with many classmates the extent of interactions between these three groups, I do have to say that strong interactions between these groups are rather the exception to the norm.
  • Most if not all UG-programs at HKUST are now 4 years in length. PG programs offer a research stream (leading to a M.Phil, also called RPG) as well as taught-programs (TPG, M.Sc.). There are PhD.-programs being offered as well.
  • I do have to warn you though of two things: (1) HKUST is located in a remote area of Hong Kong. Basically plan on spending somewhere between 30 minutes to an hour to pretty much anywhere. (2) HKUST is not known to be a party-school. Within Hong Kong, ask any student, and they will point to HKU as your first-choice if that’s your thing.

 

The School of Business and Management:

  • System (Note: When i enrolled at HKUST, the university was still following the 3-year curriculum. I am not aware of the minutiae of the changes under the new regime): Students will choose a first and second major at the end of the first year (old policy!); majors include: Accounting, Economics, Finance, Information Systems, Operations Management, Management, Marketing. Apart from these, there are Global Business, Quantitative Finance, and Economics & Finance, all three of which have a separate admission-procedure (You may kindly check the following link: HKUST Business School – Undergraduate Programs)
  • Courses and Professors: Students generally take the same courses in the first year(s) of their study at HKUST. Basic coursework includes introductory courses from all major departments, case-study / Business English courses, as well as business ethics. In subsequent years, depending on the major students have chosen, classes generally tend to be smaller, and the courses are more specialized and sophisticated. Courses usually have 2 lecture-sessions per week (each 80 mins), and sometimes an additional tutorial (attendance is not always taken or mandatory in tutorials). There are mid-term exams, projects/presentations, attendance and in-class contributions as well as final-exams, or any sub-set. More importantly, most Professors have received their PhD-degree from top-notch schools in the United States, and they are generally open to students’ requests and questions.
  • Academic Rigor: HKUST, as mentioned before, is not a party school. Part of that stems from its grading policy, which ranks students based on a normal distribution. That means that by policy the A-range will account for about 15% of grades/students, B-range for 25%, and the remaining 60% of students will receive a grade in C-range or lower. Note that this is a HKUST-policy, and I have witnessed courses with very high mean-scores, where students who got 90+ percent of the total marks were graded into B-range.
  • Exchange Program: There are many schools available for students to go on exchange, and many actually do so (in my major, almost everyone went on exchange)! Some of the “highlights” include NYU, UC-system, and University of Pennsylvania in the United States; Bocconi, City University, and WU Vienna in Europe; and Tsinghua University, Peking University, and NCCU (Taiwan) in Asia!
  • Job Market Prospects: HKUST’s career center has prepared the results of a graduate employment survey. You may access it via HKUST – Student Affairs Office.

 

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Hong Kong as a City

  • Asia’s World City: Hong Kong claims for itself the title of “Asia’s World City”. That is certainly true in the sense that it is a melting-pot of cultures (and food!). Go to Central, and you couldn’t tell if you were in New York City, Frankfurt, London, or Hong Kong. And by the way, that also holds true for the prices.
  • Living Expenses: Hong Kong is not cheap to live in. Rent prices are high (so do try to get a place in the dormitories at your university), and food prices have seen several years of inflation. You may expect to spend north of 40 HKD if you want to eat outside of campus, and somewhere above 20 HKD if you stay on campus. Of course prices are open-ended.
  • Transportation: Assuming you have a student-card, transportation is easy, convenient, and rather cheap (i.e. compared to Western cities). It is widely used by locals, and with a combination of buses and the MTR you can truly reach any place. Talking about air-travel, Hong Kong does offer connections to many (many!) places in the world, and that offers you a great opportunity to explore Asia.
  • Culture and Language: Do not expect to pick up “Mandarin” Chinese on the side. While certainly not impossible, the local’s mostly very good command of English and the ubiquitous use of Cantonese will certainly limit your “Putonghua” interactions. Hong Kong does however pride itself of its own culture, as well as its own language, and differences to Mainland China are sometimes emphasized.

 

Conclusion

  • Student life in Hong Kong is certainly different from that in the United States or Europe. It has however nonetheless been an incredibly exciting, frequently rewarding, and admittedly sometimes arduous journey. That, however, does greatly contributed to one’s personal growth. I’ve met some great friends in Hong Kong, and I would make the same decision again.
  • It’s certainly not for everybody. The workload and the associated pressure can, and that is a sad fact, make or break you.
  • Check and possibly adjust your expectations. What do you want from a university-education? Party? Academic challenges? Life in a new culture?

Angela Merkels Ausgabenpolitik: Gut gemeint, schlecht getimt.

Noch sind die Details des Wahlkampfprogramms der Union (CDU/CSU) noch nicht bekannt, erste Pläne sickerten jedoch bereits an die Öffentlichkeit: So habe Angela Merkel (CDU) laut Handelsblatt intern „“Wahlversprechen im Wert von 28.5 Milliarden Euro“ angekündigt. Das Handelsblatt nennt als Details

  • die Anhebung des Grundfreibetrags für Kinder auf das Erwachsenenniveau
  • die Einführung der Mütterrente und eine Verbesserung der Berufsunfähigkeitsrente
  • die Anhebung der Investitionen in Infrastruktur um eine Milliarde Euro für die kommenden vier Jahre (d.h. eine einmale Anhebung um eine Milliarde Euro im Jahreshaushalt)
  • die Einführung einer bisher noch vagen “Mietpreisbremse”. 

Im direkten Gegensatz  hierzu stehen die Aussagen des Bundesfinanzministers Wolfgang Schäuble: 

[Das Ziel der schwarz-gelben Bundesregierung], zum ersten Mal seit vielen Jahrzehnten keine Schulden aufzubauen, sondern im Gegenteil zu beginnen, die Schulden zu tilgen, werden wir bei Fortsetzung unseres Kurses bereits 2015 erreichen.“, und mehr noch: „Nachhaltige Begrenzung des Anstiegs der staatlichen Ausgaben ist der beste Weg für die Gesundung des Bundeshaushalts“. Zwei Spitzenpolitiker – zwei gegensätzliche Aussagen.

Zugegeben, Angela Merkels Ausgabenpläne erscheinen auf den ersten Blick „gerecht“, mehr noch, „richtig“. Kinder sollten Erwachsenen nicht untergestellt sein. Mütter, die ihr Leben der Erziehung von Kindern verschrieben haben, sollten ebenfalls in Würde alt-werden dürfen. Mietpreise sollten erschwinglich sein. Und die Straßen sahen auch schon mal besser aus. 

Diese populären Argumente sollten jedoch nicht darüber hinwegtäuschen, dass sie den Bundeshaushalt stark und, – das ist besonders prekär -, dauerhaft belasten würden. Sogar wenn der Haushalt ausgeglichen wäre, wenn also alle Ausgaben von Einnahmen (ohne Neuverschuldung) gedeckt wären, so ist eine Erhöhung der Ausgaben finanz- und haushaltspolitisch problematisch. Die Pläne der Bundeskanzlerin sind nämlich primär langfristige Mehrausgaben: Im gegenwärtigen politischen Klima in Deutschland ist es nahezu undenkbar den Begünstigten der Mütterrente in einer Phase der Austerität ihre Rente wieder wegzunehmen. Wer würde schon eine Partei (wieder-) wählen, die im Jahr 2017 antritt, den Grundfreibetrag für Kinder wieder zu senken? Kurzum, Angela Merkels Mehrausgaben stünden über Jahre hinweg auf der Ausgabenseite des Bundeshaushalts.

Zugleich sind die Einnahmen vielleicht volatiler denn je. Wirtschaftskrisen kommen und gehen, und antizyklisch dazu steigen und fallen die Steuereinnahmen des Fiskus. Wie können die vorgeschlagenen Mehrausgaben also bezahlt werden? In einer Boomphase kann der Finanzminister aus dem erhöhten Steueraufkommen schöpfen – doch was geschieht bei zurückgehenden Einnahmen (wenn Ausgaben tendenziell eher steigen, jedoch zumindest nicht langsamer zurückgehen als die Einnahmen)? Es entsteht schlichtweg ein Loch im Haushalt – und dieses Loch lässt sich mit Steuern (haushaltspolitisch besonders geeignet ist hier die MwSt., weil sie den gesamten Querschnitt der Bevölkerung betrifft) oder (erhöhter) Neuverschuldung stopfen. Ist es das, wofür die die Unionsparteien CDU und CSU stehen?

Bundeskanzlerin Angela Merkel und die CDU-CSU sollten die Finanzkrise 2008/2009 und die anschließende europäische Schuldenkrise noch gut in Erinnerung sein. Ausgaben sollten daher nicht allein nach Wahl-taktischen Gesichtspunkten bewertet werden. Stattdessen sollte die nächste Regierung in die Infrastruktur investieren (wofür die CDU-CSU laut Handelsblatt ein mageres Milliardchen zusätzlich beiseite stellt).

In guten Zeiten für die Zukunft vorzubauen, das wäre die wahre Regierungsverantwortung einer konservativen Partei, und für die Zukunft einer wirtschaftlich gesunden Bundesrepublik ist es, um ein Wort der Kanzlerin zu bemühen, schlichtweg “alternativlos”.

Developing Professionalism

According to Merriam Webster,  professionalism  is “the conduct, aims, or qualities that characterize or mark a profession or a professional person“. The U.S. Department of Labor gives a different, in my opinion much better because more precise, definition:

“Professionalism does not mean wearing a suit or carrying a briefcase; rather, it means conducting oneself with responsibility, integrity, accountability, and excellence. It means communicating effectively and appropriately and always finding a way to be productive.”

All the qualities mentioned above are soft-skills, and they are probably more important than ever to succeed in today’s job market (see this study for more). That is not to say they are impossible to attain. While the term “learning” might mislead for soft-skills (everybody has in him-/herself already the foundation for soft-skills, so learning is not truly an addition of knowledge or a skill in this case), I believe that everybody can hone these skills, and it’s about time to do so!

I have had the great privilege to work with some incredibly bright and capable classmates and friends during my entire period of study at the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology (HKUST). Together we achieved results that we never thought would even be possible at the outset of our “quests”. In the following I would like to point out a few factors that have immensely contributed to fostering soft-skills not just in me, but in all of us:

  • Cross-cultural teams. This is a no-brainer when we’re talking about (cross-cultural) communication, but its benefits actually stem not just from communication. These include: developing an intuition for different working styles and problem-solving approaches; (understanding) beginning to understand different cultures; and benefiting from different perspectives
  • Teammates with a common goal. I believe that at HKUST few students are content with being “good enough”, or fulfilling minimum requirements. I’ve had the great experience of working with those who reach for the limit(s), who are willing to go the extra mile or work through the extra night. It has taught me several things: 1) As a team, nothing is impossible if we set our mind to doing it. 2) We usually don’t even have an idea of what we are truly capable of achieving. 3) There is immense joy in overcoming one’s inner reservations and in outdoing one’s own expectations!
  • Striving for perfectionism. This relates closely to the previous point about not settling for “good enough”. I recall that in my second semester at HKUST a Professor told us: “Better make sure there are no typos in your presentation/files. If you can’t even get grammar and spelling right, what does this say about your content?” And that is actually strikingly true. To a broader extent, don’t deliver something until you’re sure it is the best you could have come up with.
  • Developing a results-oriented culture. As a team, we have always strived to set ourselves goals, to assign tasks, and to work in an effective and efficient way by drawing on everyone’s unique talents. It is, however, vitally important to avoid a sort of “self-focus”. Teamwork should be about getting things done, and about doing so in an effective, efficient, and simply awesome way! It is not the purpose of team-meetings to discuss the guidelines of assigning work and getting work done. In my experience, if a team is dealing too much with itself,  it might be time for a wake-up call in order to focus on the true purpose: Getting things done!
  • Randomly assigned teams. This was by far the biggest lesson for me. Most of the random-assigning happened in my second semester at HKUST. I’ve worked with people from different cultural and educational backgrounds, and that has taught me a big lesson: Yes, there were times when I was not too happy with how our group-work or how the dynamics played out. But getting over that has truly been an important lesson: No matter what your first perception about your respective others has been, don’t let them cloud your future judgment. Stay positive, stay open, and stay fact-oriented.

In conclusion, I believe that teamwork is a great way to develop and hone the skill set that constitutes professionalism. When courses at university rely on teamwork and group-projects, though, it is always a question of what the individual seeks to take away from it (in excess of a course grade). Teamwork truly starts at the individual, because it is inextricably linked to one’s personal attitude, expectations, and, in a somewhat anachronistically and fuzzy way, profesisonalism itself.

 

 


*Bold font added for illustration

[German] Rede an Abiturienten

Folgende Rede habe ich im Rahmen meines Deutschkurses, Q12, im Jahr 2011  geschrieben. Der adressierte Herr Raoul Schrott ist ein bekannter deutscher Schriftsteller, und  zugleich Teil des imaginären Publikums einer Abiturfeier. Im Jahr 2004 hielt er eine Rede an baden-württembergische Abiturienten. Diese Rede ist eine direkte Replik auf Herr Schrotts damalige Äußerungen.


„Als ich ein Kind war, redete ich, dachte ich, und urteilte ich wie ein Kind. Als ich ein Mann wurde, legte ich ab, was Kind an mir war.“

Liebe Damen und Herren, liebe Abiturienten und Abiturientinnen, lieber Herr Schrott,

im Jahr 2004 legten Sie in einer Rede in Saarbrücken Ihre Sicht auf die Generation der damaligen Abiturienten dar. Ich nehme an, dass sich Ihr Blick auf „die Jugend“ – auf uns – nicht grundlegend geändert hat. Sie sahen damals in uns „reine Konsumenten“ und Konformisten, Sie warfen uns das Fehlen von „Identität und Individualität“ vor, und Sie wünschten uns, wie Sie sagten, „das Talent, alt zu werden, ohne dabei erwachsen zu werden“.

Für uns, liebe Abiturientinnen und Abiturienten, endet hier und heute ein bedeutender Lebensabschnitt, vermutlich sogar der bedeutendste in unserem noch jungen Leben. Ich kann gut verstehen, wenn die eben genannten Vorwürfe den einen oder anderen unter Euch verstimmen – besonders an einem solchen Anlass wie dem heutigen. Doch dies sollte und darf uns nicht davon abhalten, dem Gehörten mit offenen Augen zu begegnen. Der größte Fehler, den wir in dieser Situation, in unserer Zeit, machen können, ist uns gegenüber Kritik zu verschließen.

Herr Schrott, in Ihrer Rede haben Sie uns, und ich spreche hier für die Jugendlichen ganz allgemein, geraten, nicht verschlossen zu werden, uns „die Dinge immer wieder mit unverstelltem Blick vor Augen“ zu führen. Das stimmt, das sollten wir nicht. Doch dann, und hier kann ich nicht mehr mit ihrer Rede übereinstimmen, sagten Sie, wir sollten alt werden, ohne dabei erwachsen zu werden. Gerade so, als stünden sich „erwachsen sein“ – oder allein der Weg dorthin – und ein Gefühl von Identität und Individualität einander entgegen. Sie sagen, es geht nicht darum, was man hat, sondern was man ist, um dieses Offene, alles möglich Machende.

Lieber Herr Schrott, liebe Anwesenden, heute ist vieles möglich gemacht, heute steht uns alles offen. Die Grenzen sind offen, die Märkte sind frei, die Senioren auf der Schulbank, eine Frau im Kanzleramt, ein Mann auf Mond, zivile Protestbewegungen in den Straßen, eine Weltgemeinschaft im Internet – wie viel offener soll unsere Gesellschaft denn sein, wie viel offener kann sie denn noch sein?

Wenn es ein Überangebot an Lehrstellen gibt, die Möglichkeit für jede und jeden, auf dem ersten oder zweiten Bildungsweg einen Schulabschluss zu erreichen, wenn jede Person Zugang zum Gesundheitssystem hat, und wenn niemand mehr in Angst vor Verfolgung oder Diskriminierung leben muss, haben wir dann nicht bereits viel möglich gemacht?

Die Frage, die viele – jung wie alt – in unserer Gesellschaft und offenbar auch Sie, Herr Schrott, beschäftigt ist doch die: Sind wir auf den Weg in schlechtere Zeiten und war, wie Sie sagten, „in den 60er-Jahren“ oder „in den 80ern“ vieles besser, oder schaffen wir es, unsere Gegenwart selbst zu gestalten, hin zu einer besseren Zukunft?

Natürlich gibt es Negativbeispiele, natürlich gibt es weniger positive Aspekte und natürlich lassen sich leicht Mäkel finden. Doch handelt es sich hierbei nicht teilweise auch schlichtweg um mediale Polemik?

Es ist selten und ungewöhnlich, die heutigen Zeiten zu loben, aber wenn wir ehrlich zueinander sind, hätte es uns weitaus schlimmer treffen können. Ein Frieden von mehr als 60 Jahren auf dem europäischen Kontinent, der Fall eines Eisernen Vorhanges, die Eingliederung von fünf Bundesländern, die Integration von Millionen Menschen mit einer anderen Heimat, das Überstehen einer Finanz- und einer Währungskrise – verdient das alles kein Lob? Ist es wirklich zu optimistisch, dies zu loben, zu betonen und darüber auch froh zu sein?

Auch in der zweiten und dritten Welt, in den heißen Wüsten und kalten Steppen dieser Erde, gab es Veränderungen. Nicht überall, und nicht überall gleich gut – aber heißt das gleich, dass sich die Welt „in absehbaren Jahrhunderten auch nicht“ verändern wird? Die Geschwindigkeit unserer Wandlungsfähigkeit zeigt sich in vielen Momenten an vielen Orten dieser Erde: Wenn sich ein Drache erhebt und zur Weltmacht wird, wenn in Indien oder in Südkorea die Technologie der Zukunft entwickelt wird, wenn in den arabischen Ländern die höchsten Wolkenkratzer und die größten Städte entstehen.

Und genau dieser rasante Wandel sollte uns Hoffnung geben – dass nicht jedes Land noch weitere 2000 Jahre brauchen wird, um sich von den Barbaren oder, wie Sie sagten, den „Wölfen“, zur Hightech-Nation zu entwickeln.

Doch nicht nur die Steuereinnahmen, die Firmengewinne und das Verkehrsaufkommen sollen wachsen, auch wir selbst müssen wachsen.

Wachsen, an den neuen Herausforderungen, die ohne Frage nicht schwerer sind, als die, die wir bereits gemeistert haben, sondern allenfalls anders.

Wachsen, dadurch dass wir uns ein Mal mehr vor Augen führen, wie viel wir erreichen können, wenn wir nur wollen.

Wachsen, durch das Übernehmen von Verantwortung in der Gesellschaft.

Denn wie sagt uns schon die Heilige Schrift: „Als ich ein Kind war, redete ich, dachte ich, und urteilte ich wie ein Kind. Als ich ein Mann wurde, legte ich ab, was Kind an mir war.“.

Und daher will ich, in Anlehnung an Ihre Schlussworte aus dem Jahr 2004, lieber Herr Schrott, uns allen einen Wunsch mitgeben: „Lasst uns unseren Aufgaben gewachsen fühlen, und dabei jung bleiben. Lasst uns endlich erwachsen und mündig werden.“.

Vielen Dank!


Alle Zitate beziehen sich, falls nicht anders gekennzeichnet, auf:

Schrott, Raoul: Der wölfische Hunger, Rede an Abiturienten. Erschienen in: Gollenstein. 2004