Aloha to the page of a wanderlusting writer juggling college life and several other hobbies into an eternally-short 24-hour day. I hope to shed light on the Dartmouth experience as I explore the brave new world of Hanover, NH and everything going to college here has to offer. In my free time, you can find me trying to learn a new language or building the perfect Spotify playlist (alternative/indie, anyone?). I hope you enjoy!
Taught by Gordon Henry, an Anishinaabe poet and author, this class taught me to explore Indigenous storytelling within digital contexts. I took this class with only seven other classmates, allowing us to really engage with films, comic books, and television shows in Indigenous languages or produced by Indigenous artists.
Taught by Timothy Pulju, this class taught me how to identify and understand how languages evolve over time and why. I analyzed and reconstructed fictional languages of imaginary nations in order to understand the link between language and culture, and ended up having such an appreciation for the complexity and beauty of language's place in history!
Taught by Lindsay Whaley, this class let me discover a newfound love for ancient apocalyptic literature. We analyzed ancient texts and compared them to modern apocalypses, looking at the zombie apocalypse phenomenon and other apocalypses in pop culture and comparing them to the ancient tradition of writing apocalypses. Additionally, I learned the Greek alphabet and now I can even stumble through ancient Greek passages.
Taught and organized by David Peterson, this class let me get into the shoes of a real linguist as we did fieldwork (virtually!!) with the Zophei language. I learned how to describe a never-before-learned language's phonology (sound system), how to characterize its grammar and words, and ultimately got to present my research to experts in the language family around the world in a workshop at the end of the term!
Taught by N. Bruce Duthu, this class taught me how Native literature can provide lens by which to evaluate, critique, and ultimately revise Federal Indian Law. During this class, I read works by Native authors like Tommy Orange and Louise Erdrich '76 alongside the opinions of definitive case opinions in American law and explained how literature can be a catalyst for Indigenous sovereignty.
Supervised by N. Bruce Duthu, I spent this off-term performing research after being awarded a Sophomore Research Scholarship to study contemporary Hawaiian cultural and linguistic revitalization. I studied 19th-century newspapers and contemporary Hawaiian texts in order to understand how Hawaiian language revitalization both past and present has advanced and continues to enable a contemporary bodied Hawaiian politic of sovereignty.
Taught by Laura McPherson, this class taught me about how languages create meaning through words. During this class, I learned how to analyze different languages' morphological processes and compare different approaches within the field as to morphological structures.
Taught by N. Bruce Duthu, this class offered me a glimpse into the lived realities of Native people in Indian Country Today. I learned about the economic, social, cultural, and historical roots for the struggles of Indigenous people today within the United States, and was able to write about the contemporary battle for Native Hawaiian visibility and Hawaiian sovereignty.
One of the first questions I had after arriving at Dartmouth was how to do non-STEM research. If you know me, you know I'm not a STEM guy. I'm a prospective Linguistics major, and the first place I looked was the department website. After some quick investigating, I found out the name of a Linguistics professor doing research on language revitalization, my area of interest. I emailed him, we set up a meeting, and he gave me some guidance as to some possible subject areas and I've been collecting more and more information and data over the past few terms. I'm thinking of using the preliminary research I've done so far as the springboard for a bigger future project, possibly for academic credit.
And I'm not the only one! A couple of my friends were contacted by a Linguistics professor for research assistant positions because of their demonstrated interest and passion while in the class. More broadly speaking, I have friends interested in Government and Sociology who both did the same exact thing as me - reach out to professors who have done work in research areas of interest, schedule a meeting, and get researching! It's that simple. All of the professors have been extremely supportive and constantly willing to provide advice and guidance, and in some ways, research in the social sciences means you'll have an independence that lab work doesn't offer all the time.
At Dartmouth, it's very much about what you're interested in. You have complete control over what you want to research, and many professors are here not only because they love to teach, but also because they want to see their students succeed. Reach out, communicate your goals, and the sky's the limit.
I've been at Dartmouth for 3 weeks and can confirm: college isn't easy. Life at Dartmouth, however, doesn't have to be hard - here are my top tips for being successful at Dartmouth (and college in general).