Fulbrights welcomed to Minot and MSU
The Minot State University Program of Foreign Languages and the Minot Islamic community hosted a potluck Eid celebration Aug. 19. The dinner welcomed Islam Farag, Fulbright language teaching assistant from Egypt, and Sofia Huarita, FLTA from Argentina, to Minot and commemorated the Aug. 18 end of Ramadan. Eid, an Arabic word meaning "festivity," celebrates the conclusion of Ramadan, the 29 or 30 days of dawn-to-sunset fasting.
Dr. Badi Alakech, a physician with Trinity Hospital and head of the Minot Mosque, greeted the FLTAs and guests. Eid guests included Division of Humanities and Office of International Programs faculty and staff, Minot International Visitors Council (MACIV) members and The Language Company-Minot staff and students. TLC-Minot currently has 10 Saudi students learning English and American culture.
"We want to create an atmosphere of mutual respect between American culture and Islamic religion worldwide. This is the third year Minot State has been honored to work with the U.S. Department of State, which supports the Fulbright program, and indeed we are the only North Dakota institution of higher education to receive this recognition and support of our foreign language program," said Scott Sigel, assistant Spanish professor and FLTA supervisor. "We are preparing students to contribute to a multicultural world right on our own doorstep."
FLTAs, who are between the ages of 21 to 29 and from more than 45 countries worldwide, are English language teachers, or training to become teachers, in their home countries. Individually matched to each institution's unique requirements, the teaching assistants are academically strong students prepared to assume responsibilities of teaching/assistant teaching in their native language.
Minot State is the only North Dakota college or university to offer a major in Arabic.
This fall, the MSU International Film Series will focus on the Arab Spring with current films subtitled in English. "Arab Spring" refers to the series of ongoing political and cultural changes in many parts of the Arab world, which started almost two years ago and have led to increased interest in how democracy and stability can take root in North Africa and the Middle East.
For questions about the FLTAs or the foreign languages program, contact 858-4265 or firstname.lastname@example.org.