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OCU hosts Russian language summer camp

Oklahoma City University will host a free immersion-style Russian language summer camp for high school and college students July 8-29, 2024, with pre-camp online classes starting in February. The summer camp will be followed by online synchronous Russian language classes from August to December 2024.

Applications are accepted online at okcu.edu/russian-immersion-program. The early admission deadline is Nov. 25 and the final deadline is Jan. 5.

The STARTALK program is free for students and is funded through a National Security Agency grant for critical languages. The year-long program accepts 42 students who have completed at least a semester of Russian language in high school, college or through independent study.

Titled “Russian Language in the World: Diversity, Diaspora, and Global Contribution,” the program aims to increase students’ levels of proficiency in the Russian language and introduce them to global Russian-speaking cultures around the world, program director Sabina Amanbayeva said.

“We are pleased to once again offer this camp for students in Oklahoma and beyond,” said Amanbayeva, who teaches world literature and Russian language at OCU. “Russian is considered one of the ‘critical languages’ for national security and offers employment opportunities in government, security, cultural exchange, translation and other fields.”

The camp offers three proficiency levels of Russian: beginner, intermediate and advanced. Students will learn about the emigrant Russian-speaking populations in different countries, including the U.S., independent countries of the former Soviet Union, Eastern Europe, Latin America, and other regions of the world where there is a Russian-speaking diaspora.

From cooking diverse dishes to learning different dances to filming a video for the final performance, students will be immersed in an intense and interactive learning experience. Students will take field trips where they can meet other speakers of Russian, and visit nearby museums and universities. The program includes career workshops in foreign service and other job opportunities connected to Russian language.

Tuition, housing, food and all field trips are provided at no cost to the students. During the summer camp (July 8-29), students will live in a dormitory on the OCU campus. During the online pre-camp (February to May 2024) and post-camp parts of the program (August to December 2024), students will have weekly online synchronous Russian classes. Students are required to attend all three parts of the program.

For more information visit okcu.edu/russian-immersion-program.

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