University of Wisconsin–Madison

Testimonials

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Check out the SASLI YouTube Channel to watch SASLI 2017 Student Testimonials!

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Julia, SASLI 2010-11, Hindi/Tamil

“I am currently a Visiting Assistant Professor at Drexel University.  In the courses I teach, I share my experiences in India and the importance of understanding culture, history and language with students.  The invaluable cultural competencies studying language at SASLI provided make my teaching and research stronger, more applicable and exciting (not to mention interesting to the students).”

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Basil, SASLI 2011, Hindi Student

“One of the reasons that I came to SASLI was to learn Hindi for my research abroad. I certainly did that, but I also learned a great deal about practical linguistics, how to memorize and retain complex information quickly, and navigating a different culture. I use the skills I learned in SASLI every day in my work with international students, and I still get together with friends that I made in the program! I would happily do it again if I could get back to Madison for a summer.”

Rachael, SASLI 2011, Hindi

“Taking Hindi was a great experience! The teachers at SASLI made learning a new alphabet and a new grammar structure seem doable. I learned so much in those 8 weeks, laying a solid foundation for the next two years of Hindi I took in grad school and the 18 months of fieldwork I conducted in India for my dissertation. I am now a Postdoctoral Research Fellow at the Institute for Gender and the Economy at the University of Toronto.”

 

Vijay, SASLI 2010, Elementary Hindi

“My summer in SASLI learning Hindi was a remarkable experience that was challenging, illuminating, and fun.  Learning a language at SASLI is a substantial investment of time and energy, but I was encouraged by supportive and motivated peers who helped me practice my skills and learn from my mistakes.  Moreover, my instructor and teaching assistant were both highly experienced, passionate, and talented. Based on the success of my summer SASLI experience, I continued to study Hindi for two additional years and undertook additional independent study of Urdu and Marathi.  Professionally, the commitment I had demonstrated to language learning through SASLI helped me secure a Foreign Language and Area Studies (FLAS) Fellowship during my Ph.D. program, and I have since traveled to India equipped with the language skills to thrive. In addition to my current work in India on environmental health, my study of Hindi (enabled by SASLI) has opened up amazing parts of the Indian cultural landscape that would have otherwise been inaccessible to me. I am grateful for the opportunity to have studied at SASLI and highly recommend the program.”

Tyler (2nd from right), SASLI 2014-15, Sinhala

“I attended SASLI over the summers of 2014 and 15 in order to study with the only Sinhala language professor in North America and to spend my summer immersed in the social and intellectual nerve center of South Asia grad student life. Not only was my study of Sinhala instrumental in being able to conduct research on Buddhism and gender in Sri Lanka for my MA thesis in Religious Studies, the friendships and intellectual connections forged with South Asia studies grad students and faculty during those months continue to prove both inspiring and fruitful in my current doctoral work. I enjoyed my time at SASLI so much, in fact, that I ultimately decided to complete my doctoral study work at UW–Madison, where my ongoing research on the religious history of Buddhist networks in the early modern Indian Ocean continues to benefit from the robust language offerings and strong area-studies communities on campus.”

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Suzanne, SASLI 2012, Bengali

“At SASLI I began the process of learning both a new script and my first language from South Asia. The program was well organized and there was lots of support as well as plenty of free time to study. Madison is very visitor friendly-with good coffee, good food, and many community events. I have built on the methods for language learning I experienced at SASLI and I applied them to both teaching literacy and an ELL position with the Peace Corps.”

Calynn, SASLI 2015, Elementary Bengali

“The intensive language program at SASLI offered an invaluable opportunity to develop a foundation in Bengali, which I have since built upon through study and research in India. Today, I continue to use the language skills I developed at SASLI daily in the context of my PhD research in West Bengal. Beyond this, SASLI provided an excellent setting in which to meet other graduate students interested in the region, and I remain in frequent contact with my teacher and fellow students. In short, the SASLI program was a formative part of my graduate training, and I highly recommend it.”

Chelsea, SASLI 2012-2014, Elementary & Intermediate Urdu, Intermediate Hindi

“I use the language skills I acquired at SASLI every day at my job in the nonprofit sector. Since SASLI, I’ve used my Hindi-Urdu language skills to teach ESOL, prepare individuals for the U.S. citizenship exam and interview, complete U.S. citizenship applications, register voters, get out the vote, and assist with providing pro-bono immigration legal services. I wouldn’t be where I am without the strong foundation SASLI built. I’d recommend it to anyone interested in building a strong foundation in South Asian languages.”

Veronica, SASLI 2015, Urdu

“SASLI was my first experience in formal Urdu instruction and set the foundation for my future language learning. After my summer at SASLI, I was able to take courses at the intermediate and advanced levels in India and Pakistan. These experiences have been crucial in developing my ability to speak, read and write in Urdu, which in turn has increased my confidence in traveling independently in South Asia and allows me to read primary texts in Urdu for my research.”