Story written by Kathryn Smart, NPTS, ’17
While living in Chechnya, it was common for me to be walking down the street and suddenly hear deep voices yelling something in my direction. Sometimes it was someone asking for directions or yelling at me for breaking social norms.
Story taken from interview with Francesca Aka, MPA, ’18; Written by K.Throgmorton
Growing up a ‘third culture kid,’ Francesca learned quickly how to adapt to new places and new people. Francesca describes being a third culture kid as being a bridge between cultures. She navigates her family culture and the dominant culture of wherever she is.
Story written by Tangut Degfey, IPD, ’18
My language journey started when I began studying Japanese at Middlebury College. Growing up, I was interested in the East Asian region, particularly the
technology that came from there. We had a TV, a refrigerator, a radio and other electronics equipments that were imported from one or more East Asian countries and the more I saw the names of the countries on those equipments, the more I grew passionate about learning about the culture and geography.
Story taken from interview with Kuanysh Agaidarov, IPD, ’18; Written by K. Throgmorton
Growing up in Kazakhstan, most of Kuanysh’s language learning happened in university, supplemented by his study in the English as a Second Language program at the Institute last year. He grew up speaking Kazakh and Russian, his studies at school and university were also in Kazakh and Russian; as a result, he has a strong command of those languages.
Story taken from interview with Christina Lukeman, MBA, ’17; Written by K.Throgmorton
Learning a language is humbling; it’s hard to do and takes time as well as dedication. When Christina talks about the languages she speaks and the learning process they require, she acknowledges just how awkward it can feel to start learning a new language.
Story written by Merideth Bush, MPA, ’16
Spanish has always been an important presence in my life. My mother lived as a medical missionary in Guatemala before marrying my father, so I became familiar with the language at a very young age.
Story taken from interview with Karla Piacentini, IEM/MPA, ’17; Written by K.Throgmorton
“The limits of my language are the limits of my world.” ~Ludwig Wittgenstein
Language is a bridge that connects people across cultures that engenders an intimate authenticity among language learners. Learning a new language forces you to make mistakes and falter in efforts to gain a better handle on the new language.
Story written by Henry Clock, IPD, ’16
I spent 2012 learning Arabic and Chinese in immersive learning experiences in Morocco, Shanghai and Cairo. Study abroad experiences made both languages come alive but it was difficult to keep up my skills in one language while studying and living in the other.