Studying Abroad in a Less Commonly Taught Language

This summer I spent two months abroad studying Persian language in Dushanbe, Tajikistan with the American Councils for International Education.  I was able to live with a host family, travel all around the country, and got credit for a year’s worth of language classes in just one summer, and you can too!

Amharic-language Pepsi advertisement in Ethiopia

As a KU student, I was able to take advantage of several on-campus opportunities available for anyone interested in Less Commonly Taught Languages, which include Persian, Arabic, Swahili, Chinese, and Russian, among many others.  One of the best resources for learning these languages are KU’s various area studies centers, including the Center for Global and International Studies, the Center for Russian, East European, and Eurasian Studies and the Kansas African Studies Center.  If you haven’t considered learning a language like Uyghur or Amharic before, and you are interested in a non-traditional study abroad experience, contact one of these centers to take advantage of the great language learning opportunities on campus before you even leave Lawrence.  If you are currently enrolled in one of these language classes, think about studying abroad – this is a great way to put your language skills to use and get that all-important immersion experience.  Even though I was only in Tajikistan for two months, I was able to learn two semesters’ worth of Persian simply because I was using the language all day, every day, not just in my classroom.  Finally, there are several scholarship opportunities available to study these languages – including FLAS, Boren, and Critical Language Scholarships – that KU students have been awarded in the past that help fund these life-changing experiences.

Chinese calligraphy

If you are thinking about studying abroad in a unique place or if you are studying a Less Commonly Taught Language at KU, you should definitely explore your options by stopping by the Study Abroad Info Center in 105 Lippincott for walk-in advising anytime you are free.  We’d love to help you find the right program for you!