International Education Week at the Hawaii with a Russian Scholar
In November 2016 all departments of the University of Hawaii at Manoa; Honolulu, HI held a great event called “International Education Week”. Department of Languages & Literatures of Europe & the Americas, College of Languages, Linguistics & Literature together with Russian Division got very much involved in it. Elena Sedova, Associate Professor from the Dpt of Literature & Teaching Methods at Chelyabinsk State Pedagogical University, is currently affiliated at Hawaii as Scholar-in-Residence; she is teaching Intermediate Russian and Advanced Russian (with a topic of interested in language, literature, culture or phonetics) for the whole 2016-17 academic year and she became responsible for the Week.
Thus within the framework of the Russian Literature course Elena organized viewing and later discussion of the film “Diary of His Wife” (produced by A. Uchitel’, 2000) devoted to life of Ivan Bunin, the Nobel Prize winner. It was pleasant to listen to the students’ reflections of Bunin's works that were read and analyzed in September, his life in France etc. The choice of the film was not coincidental as it reflects life of the Russian emigre intellectuals.
The students also had a chance to practice their Russian at the Russian conversation table, on November 17, with Brin Hock, graduate student from the University of Hawaii, who has been studying Russian for quite a long time. Brin played various games to develop communicative skills.
Elena also organized and headed round table devoted to the educational issues in Russia, called “Discovering Higher Education in Russia”. All her students gave reports on a wide range of subjects. Nadya Bolshakova, Russian native speaker from the Saint Petersburg State University, shared her memories on her studies in Russia as well as her life at the Hawaii for 8 years. At another class Nadya joined Elena and taught students conversational Russian. Elena’s student Dylan Custodio wrote a small note on this event: «On Friday, 18 November, our class had met with Nadya Bolshakova, a native Russian speaker from Chelyabinsk. Hearing the language from a native speaker is always a great opportunity, it can be surprising how different things seem when spoken from a new voice. With that said, it was interesting to listen to the phonetic differences in speech between our guest and our professor, both of whom are from Chelyabinsk. Nadya was a kind guest and seemed a natural fit in our class; we would like to thank our professor for arranging the meeting, we were happy to have her! Dylan "Dima" Custodio».
Elena Sedova (on the right) with the round table participants
On November 16 the Russian Club, that is also supervised by Elena, conducted the competition on calligraphy. The students copied the verse by A. Plescheev about autumn. The winners were awarded genuine Russian prizes – Russian nesting dolls, magnets in the form of balalayka, samovar etc.
The Week ended by presentation of the Russian Department at the International Education Fair. At the information desk they spoke about their department, program and Russian Club.