By: Lydiah Kiramba (SILMW Swahili Teaching Assistant)
SILMW 2011 provided a unique opportunity for students to intensively study languages of the Muslim world for 8 weeks during summer. Classes were taught for four hours every day. Five languages were offered, including Swahili, Wolof, Arabic, Turkish and Persian from elementary through advanced levels.
As part of cultural activities, there were cooking classes for all the languages, film viewing, museum trips, conversation tables and a cultural night that culminated the summerÂ session- perhaps the greatest site for cultural exchange.
One of the most satisfying aspects of SILMW was the opportunity for students, faculty, and staff to get together during activities throughout the summer. While university schedules restrict such interaction, SILMW cultural events provided ample time for interaction in the target languages. Many students took advantage of SILMW to gain language skills before embarking on research.