Anna is an alum of the 2023 Virtual NSLI-Y program from Nashville, Tennessee.
Anna (they/them), a student from Nashville, Tennessee, is on a journey to explore new languages and cultures. Anna has a deep passion for international affairs and history. They understand the impact learning languages can have in these fields and believe it will open doors for their future career.
Driven by curiosity about world issues, Anna chose to participate in Virtual NSLI-Y, a virtual language and cultural exchange program. They specifically signed up for the Russian program because of their connection with the conflict between Russia and Ukraine. Notably, they believed that honing their Russian language and conflict-resolution skillset would have an impact in supporting their friend who lives just outside Kyiv. Anna believed that participating in Virtual NSLI-Y would bring them closer to understanding and empathizing with what's happening in the region.
Anna's interest doesn't stop there. They recognize the close ties between the People's Republic of China and Russia and are currently learning Mandarin Chinese in school. Adding Russian to their language repertoire will deepen their understanding of these important relations and allow them to share that knowledge with others.
As Anna becomes more comfortable with the language, their goal is to travel to a Russian-speaking country in the Baltic region. They believe that immersing themselves in the culture will not only be a fun experience but also enhance their language skills and broaden their understanding of Russia and other countries where Russian is spoken.
Anna describes their experience with Virtual NSLI-Y as “wonderful”. They had an amazing class and a supportive teacher who helped them learn the basics of the Russian language and introduced them to the culture through engaging lessons and guest speakers. Whenever Anna encountered challenges, such as struggling with a grammatical rule, their dedicated teacher promptly responded with helpful guidance.
Completing the program has brought Anna one step closer to their career goals. They now have access to valuable resources to continue their language studies independently, and they feel grateful for the opportunity and ability to communicate with more people. The program has ignited Anna's passion for language learning and provided a solid foundation for their future endeavors.