In May of 2007, I will complete my undergraduate studies at Grinnell College, graduating with a Bachelor of Arts in Russian (Language and Literature) with an additional concentration in Russian, Central, and East European Studies (focusing on Russian history). I’ll spend my Fulbright year studying at St. Petersburg State University in a department providing Russian language instruction coupled with pedagogical training in Russian as a Foreign Language. By taking this dual approach to Russian language, I hope to develop my teaching skills while expanding my own command of the language through advanced coursework in Russian linguistics.
My interest in Russia was first piqued in high school, when I had the chance to visit Moscow for several weeks on an exchange program. Since then, I’ve had the opportunity to make a couple return trips: first, on a study abroad program in fall of 2005, and again in December of 2006, on a two-week internship at the Theater of Satire (http://www.satire.ru). At Grinnell, I’ve also been fortunate enough to explore avenues of Russian studies outside the traditional language and literature curriculum of the Russian major. During the summer of 2006, I conducted historical-demographic research, using unpublished church records from a parish in Tula, Russia to assess living conditions and determine the reasons for high mortality in an early modern Russian town. The written work that came out of this research was recently published in Transactions of the Tula State University: Series on History and Cultural Studies.
My non-academic interests include cooking, shooting pool, bicycling, and admiring large personified food objects that I encounter on my travels. After my Fulbright adventure, I plan to pursue graduate study in Russian history.