Culture Tag

Cous Cous: A Popular Moroccan Dish

Posted On December 4, 2018By Meike FaberIn Arabic

A Mistake Turned Life Lesson

Lillian Cox is from Fargo, ND and participated in the Morocco Academic Year 2017-2018 program. In late November of 2017, I found myself huddled with two of my friends in a cold house in rural Morocco. During my gap year abroad, I had to get used to a lot of new things. I learned a new language, learned about a new religion, and learned how to navigate in an entirely unfamiliar environment. After two months of living in Rabat, my group took a cultural excursion. We stayed with host familiesRead More
Ashley with her host family

Posted On November 29, 2018By Meike FaberIn Korean

The Crossroads of Culture in Seoul

Ashley Hajimirsadeghi is from Baltimore, MD and participated in the Korea Summer 2018 program. During my time in Seoul, South Korea, in the summer of 2018, it was in my wildest dreams to go and eat my culture’s food with my host family. When my roommate and I first moved in with my host family, my host mother and father bashfully told me, “Ashley…we didn’t know was Persian was. We had to look it up!” As an Iranian-American, this was culture shock to me. Everyone in the United States knewRead More
Posing with fellow NSLI-Y students

Posted On September 25, 2018By pabloIn Arabic

Looking to the Future

Tanya is from Irving, TX and participated in the 2018 Arabic summer program in Jordan. I was always fascinated by Ancient Egypt since childhood and in 2013 when I visited Egypt with my family, the images from the countless books and History Channel became a breathtaking reality. This trip inspired me to apply to the NSLI-Y Arabic program and when I was accepted, I imagined having a similar experience to Egypt in Jordan. However, what I envisioned, quickly proved to be wrong. The experience of living with, studying, and eatingRead More
Photo of Kate on a swing
Kate is from Madison, WI and participated in the 2017-18 Chinese AY program in Taiwan. Born in the Guangxi Zhuang region of China, Kate Jasenski was adopted at a year old. She grew up embracing American multiculturalism with both her American life and Chinese heritage as a large part of her identity. To increase her connection to her Chinese background, Kate wanted to learn Chinese to make connections and build relationships.   “Language is the most basic way people connect with one another. Connecting through language would help me better understandRead More
Roshni overlooking the beautiful scenery

Posted On August 23, 2018By Signe KnutsonIn Hindi

Breaking My Cultural Iceberg: India’s Diversity

Roshni is from State College, PA and participated in the 2016 India summer program. You awake to the aroma of spices while putting on your school uniform, but it’s a new place. You say “सुप्रभात!” to greet your host mother and sister, but it’s a new language. The culture slowly immerses you with the natives, but it’s a new lifestyle. Now, you’ll experience the memories of living in India through the eyes of a NSLI-Y exchange student, me. The AFS cultural iceberg metaphor resonates with me—I observe the ice aboveRead More
Photo of a bustling street in India

Posted On August 21, 2018By Signe KnutsonIn Hindi

My Favorite Activity

Fiona is from Hamden, CT and participated in the 2018 Hindi summer program in India. Within minutes of landing in Mumbai, my intrepid NSLI students and I were treated with a musical greeting of vehicular communication. It is tempting to characterize this intercourse as the honking of car horns, however the use of such an umbrella term as, “car” would exclude so many of India’s outlandish and colorful modes of transportation. Indian roads, as we soon came to realize, are just as whimsically chaotic as the various tones of theRead More
Zina wearing a traditional wedding sari

Posted On August 16, 2018By Signe KnutsonIn Hindi

An Indian Wedding

Zina Dolan is from Urbana, IL and participated in the 2018 Hindi summer program. This week, I attended my first Indian wedding — and it was incredible. The day was full of traditions, colors, music, saris, family, and food. The groom was a friend of my host grandfather, so my entire host family attended the event. Several days before the wedding, my host mother invited me into her room to look at her collection of saris. In a family with a grandmother, a mother, and two sisters, there was no shortage ofRead More
John with his host family

Posted On August 14, 2018By Signe KnutsonIn Russian

Alumni Spotlight: John Muckler

John is from West Branch, IA and participated in the 2017-2018 Russian AY program in Moldova. When John first stumbled across the NSLI-Y program, he assumed that it wasn’t for him. He had never left the country, so he thought a year abroad would be impossible. However, his interest in Russian culture and desire to dispel negative media portrayal of the country led him to give the application a try. It was as he was writing his essays that he really began to grasp what NSLI-Y entailed and how heRead More
A beautiful sky at the beach.

Posted On April 11, 2018By Signe KnutsonIn Arabic

What I’m Going to Miss

Lillian participated in the Morocco 2017-2018 academic year program.  As of today, I have only 2 months left in this amazing country. Now that I’ve been living here for well over 6 months, I think that I have learned a lot about Morocco. I wanted to take a minute to talk about the things that I’m grateful for, and what I’m going to miss when I leave. I think that I am still the same person as I was when I came, but I will take certain parts of MoroccoRead More
The behenchara posing with their colorful headscarves!

Posted On April 2, 2018By Signe KnutsonIn Hindi

We Said MumBYE to Indore for 3 Whole Days

Megan is from Encinitas, California and participated in the 2017-2018 India Academic Year program. As I write this, I can officially say I have been here for three months as of today! It’s crazy to think about my first few weeks here. It feels like it was so long ago! The five of us NSLI-Y girls recently got to fly out to Mumbai for three days for our midterm orientation (although we still have seven of ten months to go…) to discuss our time in Indore so far and makeRead More