When U.S. Ambassador Victoria Kennedy paid her first official visit to Carinthia on Monday, November 14, 2022, students from the Department of English had the rare opportunity to sit down and discuss U.S. related topics with the high-ranking official. Victoria Reggie Kennedy, sworn in as Ambassador to the Republic of Austria by U.S. President Joe Biden on November 16, 2021, took up her service in Vienna in January 2022. After the ambassador was received by the Chairman of the Senate of the University of Klagenfurt, Prof. Martin Hitz, and a delegation from the Department of English, a small group of our students had the chance to meet and engage in a roundtable discussion and Q&A with the ambassador.
Topics addressed were the work and role of an ambassador in Austria, the history of Austrian-American relations, the English & American Studies program and Game Studies, women’s rights in the U.S. & around the world, the effects of the pandemic on the U.S., the midterm elections & presidential candidates 2024, and Joe Biden’s climate change policy. The Department of English was delighted and honored to host the event with Ambassador Kennedy on the eve of its 50 Years Anniversary in 2023.