Name: Anna Fett
Language: Modern Hebrew
Location of Study: Jerusalem, Israel
Program of Study: Hebrew University
Sponsors: Center for the Study of Languages and Cultures and Kellogg Institute for International Studies
A brief personal bio:
Anna Fett is a doctoral student in Peace Studies and History at the Kroc Institute for International Peace Studies. She holds an M.T.S. degree from Harvard Divinity School and B.A. degree from Luther College. She is a Notre Dame Presidential Fellow and a doctoral student affiliate of the Kellogg Institute for International Studies. She has served as an interfaith intern for a community of Muslim, Jewish, and Christian congregations. Anna studies twentieth-century history of the United States and the Middle East. Her dissertation research focuses on transnational religious, cultural, and political connections and discourses between the United States and Israel-Palestine.
Why this summer language abroad opportunity is important to me:
As a historian focusing on transnational issues between the United States and the Middle East, I believe it is vital to incorporate non-American and non-English sources into my work. My goal is to use both Modern Hebrew and Arabic archival sources in my dissertation. Mastering these languages will also make me a unique candidate on the academic job market when I compete against other Americanists. While my desired career goal is to teach in a college or university, I also believe an experience working for the United States government will enrich my future work in the classroom. Therefore, I also have great interest in applying for the Boren Fellowship at the end of my third year. Language acquisition is vital for making me a strong candidate for these opportunities.
What I hope to achieve as a result of this summer study abroad experience:
The best place to study Modern Hebrew is in Israel itself. The Hebrew University of Jerusalem is a widely acclaimed place of study for this language because it offers special “ulpan” programs. Although these are only six week programs, they are designed to be as intensive as possible in order to cover almost an entire year’s worth of study in that time period. My intensive classroom instruction, taught primarily in Hebrew, will be reinforced through guest lectures, field trips, and full immersion in the language and local culture in and around Jerusalem. My top priority is to master a basic working knowledge of this language by the end of the program, so that I can begin my archival research in non-English sources as quickly as possible. Additionally, I plan to use my free time in Jerusalem for preliminary research in local archives to which I plan to return in my fourth year of studies. This summer program will give me the jump start I need to open new opportunities for my dissertation research and to gain deeper insights into Israeli society.
My specific learning goals for language and intercultural learning this summer:
1. By the end of the summer, I will have a basic working knowledge of Modern Hebrew to be able to navigate and explore the city of Jerusalem comfortably on my own.
2. By the end of the summer, I will be able to speak, read, write and listen at a level of proficiency equivalent to almost two semesters in a first-year beginner’s Modern Hebrew course.
3. At the end of the summer, I will have gained enough mastery of the language of Modern Hebrew that I can begin preliminary dissertation research including navigating online archival catalogs and taking trips to local archives in Israel.
My plan for maximizing my international language learning experience: