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Professor Lalita Satyel and students

Bollywood Comes to Oxford

Enrichment Programs

In addition to foreign language study and study-abroad programs, Miami offers:

Reserved language tables in dining halls are for students who want to practice their speaking skills with other students and faculty. Dining halls also have special occasion menus with international themes.

Living-learning communities are located in residence halls and offer international programming for undergraduate students.

  • Chinese Language and Culture
  • French Language and Culture
  • International Business
  • German Language and Culture
  • Global Connections
  • Spanish Language and Culture
A girl getting her hand painted

Henna hand-decorating, which originated in India, has been popularized world-wide by Bollywood films.

When you approach Lalita Satyal's classes in Irvin Hall, you know you're opening the door to a world beyond a physical classroom. You can hear the exuberant rhythms of a Bollywood musical, smell aromatic curry, and see the intricate henna designs being swirled on students' hands.

Satyal teaches Hindi language courses and created a new course for spring semester, "Bollywood and Indian Culture." She uses the films to bring to life many historical and current social issues like the Indian caste system, the education system, the country's struggle for independence from the British, and India's relationship with Pakistan.

"In some films, it's a good way to introduce students to how we can change long-held cultural attitudes by educating people," she noted.
From henna to gulab jamun and Parle biscuits

In one Bollywood class session, Satyal brought in tubes of henna paste and plates of her homemade Indian delicacies such as samosas with a variety of vegetables including corn, rice pulav with lentils, gulab jamun—fried cheese balls soaked in sweet syrup, and Parle biscuits to go with tea.

"Henna-painting is very popular around the world. So instead of just bringing in pictures of henna patterns, I have students paint on each other's hands," said Satyal. "And food—you can never go wrong with! I brought some new types of foods that they hadn't tried before, things they wouldn’t see on the Indian restaurant menus in Oxford."

"When students see things, taste them, experience them, they seem to enjoy it more and remember it longer," she said.

In both her Hindi language classes and her new "Bollywood and Indian Culture" class, Satyal draws her students into a world that is exotic to most.

For some of her students of Indian heritage, Hindi is not even a second language. They want to reconnect with their heritage—and not embarrass themselves when they visit relatives back in India. "I think a lot of my Indian-American students probably have parents saying, 'You better learn Hindi!'" Satyal said.

10th largest economy

Other students are attracted to the rich Indian culture. Some are interested in government foreign service. Entrepreneurial-minded students see the booming business opportunities in the world's 10th largest economy. Many Miami business majors either minor in a foreign language or take language classes. In fact, some business programs require language proficiency.

Regardless of a student's major, whether it's the sciences, engineering, business, Miami makes it possible to include language studies in most students' academic plans.

Growing up in New Jersey and Philadelphia, Jessica DeCandia transferred to Miami as a zoology major with her sights on medical school. But as she explained, the only problem was, "I don't like hospitals." She found that what she really liked was her minor in Anthropology, which led her to study abroad at a Tibetan refugee camp in Dharamshala, India.

"When I came back from India and wanted to talk about my experiences, I was drawn to the Indian Student Association," she said.

She is currently enrolled in Satyal's Hindi 202 language course and her Bollywood and Indian Culture class.

"Going into Mrs. Satyal's introductory Hindi class, I told her I was just not good at languages. I expressed my fear to her in her office, and she eased my concerns. I started to stay after class and talk with her, and then she started inviting me to meet other people and come to her house and practice Hindi, so I got to know her more personally."

Many students, and sometimes their parents, too, have been invited to Satyal's home for lunch and conversation. "I have students who come and just hang out and talk about India. It gives you more time to relax and talk," she said.

Working together
Through language classes, study abroad, and student cultural organizations, students gather with common goals to make a difference in the world.

Some members of the Indian Student Association (ISA) recently formed AAPKI SEVA, which means, "in your service" in Hindi. Their goal was to identify a service project that would be manageable and affordable for a group run mostly by students.

One of its members, Radha Jagarlamudi, an international student from South India, went back to that region and conducted a needs assessment with members of four communities. From that inclusive process, the group is now working to build hygienic latrines one community at a time.

And Jessica DeCandia—the student who was so unsure of her ability to learn Hindi—has been accepted into the Peace Corps after graduation and was a national finalist for a Fulbright Teaching Scholarship in India.

Written by Tracy Chappelow, University Communications and Marketing

Published April 2013

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Bollywood Display

Bollywood Display

Henna Decoration

Henna Decoration

Henna Hand Painting

Henna Hand Painting

Students enjoying Bollywood and Hindi language classes

Students enjoying Bollywood and Hindi language classes

Instructor Lalita Satyal teaches Hindi and Indian culture

Instructor Lalita Satyal teaches Hindi and Indian culture

Bollywood Conversation

Bollywood Conversation

Students participating in Bollywood and Hindi language classes

Students participating in Bollywood and Hindi language classes

A student participating in Bollywood and Hindi language classes

A student participating in Bollywood and Hindi language classes

Students participating in Bollywood and Hindi language classes

Students participating in Bollywood and Hindi language classes

Writing Demonstration

Writing Demonstration

Enrichment Programs

In addition to foreign language study and study-abroad programs, Miami offers:

Reserved language tables in dining halls are for students who want to practice their speaking skills with other students and faculty. Dining halls also have special occasion menus with international themes.

Living-learning communities are located in residence halls and offer international programming for undergraduate students.

  • Chinese Language and Culture
  • French Language and Culture
  • International Business
  • German Language and Culture
  • Global Connections
  • Spanish Language and Culture
Locations
Luxembourg
West Chester
Middletown
Hamilton
Oxford
  • Luxembourg
    Luxembourg

    John E. Dolibois European Center, Luxembourg

    One of Miami's oldest continuous study abroad programs, the Miami University John E. Dolibois Center (MUDEC) in Luxembourg offers students the opportunity to enroll in Miami classes taught by European-based and Ohio-based Miami faculty. Students enjoy a unique combination of first-class academics, engagement in the local community, and various faculty-guided and independent travel opportunities.

    Contact and emergency information for the Luxembourg Campus. Starting with general contact info on the left; additional contact and emergency information on the right.

    Château de Differdange
    1, Impasse du Château
    L-4524 Differdange
    Grand Duchy of Luxembourg
    luxembourg@MiamiOH.edu
    MiamiOH.edu/luxembourg

    217-222 MacMillan Hall
    531 E. Spring Street
    Oxford, Ohio 45056, USA

    Directions

    Main Operator: 011-352-582222-1
    Oxford-based Coordinator: 513-529-5050
    Emergency info: MiamiOH.edu/emergency

  • West Chester
    West Chester

    Voice of America Learning Center

    Located midway between Cincinnati and Dayton along I-75, the Voice of America Learning Center (VOALC) offers undergraduate and graduate courses and programs drawn from Miami's Regional and Oxford campuses. Home to Miami's MBA program, the Learning Center provides ready access to graduate programs for area educators and courses leading to the BIS degree for undergraduates.

    Contact and emergency information for the Voice of America Campus. Starting with general contact info on the left; additional contact and emergency information on the right.

    7847 VOA Park Dr.
    (Corner of VOA Park Dr. and Cox Rd.)
    West Chester, OH 45069
     
    voalc@MiamiOH.edu
    MiamiOH.edu/voalc

    Printable Floor Plan
    Directions

    Main Operator: 513-895-8862
    (From Middletown) 513-217-8862
    Emergency info: regionals.MiamiOH.edu/emergency

  • Middletown
    Middletown

    Middletown Regional Campus

    Nestled on 141 acres near I-75, Miami University Middletown offers bachelor's degrees, associate degrees, and beginning coursework for most four-year degrees. Nearby Greentree Health Science Academy immerses Miami's nursing and health information technology students in the health care experience while taking classes.

    Contact and emergency information for the Middletown Campus. Starting with general contact info on the left; additional contact and emergency information on the right.

     4200 N. University Blvd.
    Middletown, OH 45042
    regionalwebmaster@MiamiOH.edu
    regionals.MiamiOH.edu

    Printable Campus Map
    Directions

    Main Operator: 513-727-3200
    (Toll-free) 1-86-MIAMI-MID
    Office of Admission: 513-727-3216
    Campus Status Line: 513-727-3477
    Emergency info: regionals.MiamiOH.edu/emergency

  • Hamilton
    Hamilton

    Hamilton Regional Campus

    A compact, friendly, commuter campus, Miami Hamilton offers bachelor's degrees, associate degrees, and beginning coursework for most four-year degrees. Small class sizes, on-site child care, and flexible scheduling make Miami Hamilton attractive to students at all stages of life and career.

    Contact and emergency information for the Hamilton Campus. Starting with general contact info on the left; additional contact and emergency information on the right.

    1601 University Blvd.
    Hamilton, OH 45011
    regionalwebmaster@MiamiOH.edu
    regionals.MiamiOH.edu

    Printable Campus Map
    Directions

    Main Operator: 513-785-3000
    Office of Admission: 513-785-3111
    Campus Status Line: 513-785-3077
    Emergency info: regionals.MiamiOH.edu/emergency

  • Oxford
    Oxford

    Miami University, Oxford Ohio

    Nationally recognized as one of the most outstanding undergraduate institutions, Miami University is a public university located in Oxford, Ohio. With a student body of 16,000, Miami effectively combines a wide range of strong academic programs with faculty who love to teach and the personal attention ordinarily found only at much smaller institutions.

    Contact and emergency information for the Oxford Campus. Starting with general contact info on the left; additional contact and emergency information on the right.

    501 E. High St.
    Oxford, OH 45056

    Printable Campus Map
    Directions

    Main Operator: 513-529-1809
    Office of Admission: 513-529-2531
    Vine Hotline: 513-529-6400
    Emergency info: MiamiOH.edu/emergency