After twelf years "hitchhiking through the galaxy" of arts (drama, cognitive linguistics, discourse analysis and communication psychology) at the Universities of Sofia (1988-1991) and Leipzig (1991-2000), Maria left Germany to work in Slovakia from 2000 to 2007 as a project manager and university lecturer for Intercultural Business Communication (on behalf of the Robert Bosch Foundation and the DAAD). After her book "Spielregeln. Arbeitsbuch zur mündlichen und schriftlichen Geschäftskorrespondenz auf Deutsch" was published in 2002, she provided plenty of implementation trainings for German language teachers in several countries (Bulgaria, Czech Republic, France, India, Russia, Slovakia, Ukraine). During the same period (2002 - 2007), her research work focussed on communication in public authorities and companies in the previous "Eastern Bloc" countries. During a contemplative stay in India in 2007, Maria decided to go back to live in Germany. She chose Dresden as a new "home town". Since then she has been working as a trainer for Intercultural Communication and, in order to satisfy her passion for international networking, as a manager for a string of DAAD-projects ("International Alumni Weeks") at the TU of Dresden. Maria joined our chair in February 2012 to organize the International Alumni Workshop AMASING (Alumni Materials Science Networking) which will take place from 4th June to 9th June 2012 (see also http://nano.tu-dresden.de/amasing/).