Liftoff!

I had the most incredible week! On Wednesday, I saw the ballet Onegin at the Bolshoi Theater with one of my classmates. I’ve wanted to see this ballet for several years, and it was so worth the wait! The ballerinas were incredibly talented, the set was fantastic, and the costumes were gorgeous. I especially loved …

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What can I say about my first overseas experience?

Before coming to Tajikistan, I was over-the-moon excited about seeing a country whose people spoke a dialect of Persian and cherished the same premodern literary tradition as my father's people, the Iranians. The high status of poetry in Persianate (Google it) culture is well-known and widely attested to, so I couldn't wait to enter a …

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Visiting a Russian Banya

One of the most quintessential Russian experiences is the banya. The detoxifying nature of the banya relies heavily on the balancing of extreme hot and cold temperatures. This is what the Russians believe add to the health benefits of the banya  First, I sat in an extremely hot room- when they were initially heating up …

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“Aunt Valya will have my head if I don’t take care of you!” – Gender roles in Ukraine

This morning, my host mom, Valentyna, told me that as she and her husband would both be arriving late tonight, my seventeen-year-old host brother, Ruslan, would be taking care of me today, including getting dinner ready for me. I had initially thought that he would be heating up leftover borshch in the microwave or something …

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Fulbright-Hays Scholarship Recipient Profile: Claire Kalikman

Claire Kalikman reflects on the challenges and rewards of daily life while living abroad on the Advanced Russian Language and Area Studies Program in Moscow as a Fulbright-Hays Group Projects Abroad scholarship recipient. Studying abroad in Russia is not always easy. Seemingly arbitrary websites and programs are blocked by Russian networks, washing machines are a …

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Playing Baseball in Russia

This is my second time in Russia. My first experience here was most focused in the classroom: my time was divided between classes and homework and the rigorous schedule and harsh winter kept me inside for most of the semester. However, I knew that this summer I wanted to experience everything that I could outside …

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Stereotypes are Meant to be Broken

When people heard that I was going to Russia, most had something to say about it. Stereotypes are thrown around like fishing nets, they trap anyone who hears them and unless you go experience it for yourself, you don’t have anything else to believe. My observations are based off my experience in Moscow, which doesn’t …

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Tradition and History in Russia

After almost two months in-country, my host mom has decided that I am a normal person. Imagine that! Me, normal? I, who come from an unimaginably large family (by current European standards), am studying Russian and Mathematics with a passion, am seriously considering flying to Mars as a career, doing “men's work” without blinking unless …

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Fulbright-Hays Scholarship Recipient Profile: Alexi Kim

In this video, Alexi Kim shares her daily routine (all in Russian!) while on the Advanced Russian Language and Area Studies Program in Moscow as a Fulbright-Hays Group Projects Abroad scholarship recipient. To view the video, please click here! Before studying in Moscow, my main fears were: (1) only having one year of prior language instruction …

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