In September 2019, the French department at UIC was delighted to welcome Nitya Viswanath, a French teacher at Amos Alonzo Stagg High School, and thirty of her students to our campus. This was a wonderful opportunity to encourage high school juniors and seniors to attend college and study French.
We began by serving them a light breakfast (donuts and juice) from 9:00 to 9:30 AM. Several of our French majors and minors were also invited, as well as members of the UIC French club who gave an informal presentation about the fun activities they had planned for the year.
Nitya’s students then split into two groups. Twelve AP students attended a literature seminar, French 301, that I was teaching at the time, while the remaining eighteen students sat in on a language class, French 103, taught by one of our best instructors. I was particularly impressed that a few of the students who attended my seminar chose to participate in our discussion of Montesquieu’s Lettres persanes.
After these classes, at 11:00 AM, the two groups reunited and listened to a presentation I had prepared about the French program at UIC and the benefits of continuing their French studies (see attached powerpoint). Then, two speakers from the Office of Recruitment & Engagement shared more general information with the students about UIC and the application process. They then took the students on a forty-five minute campus tour, during which the students had a picnic lunch.
We hope this visit inspired some students to apply to UIC and, once there, to take some French classes.