Eat Your SADness Away

You look outside your window and all you see is a sheet of white. You check your iPhone weather app to try to assuage yourself and just disregard the number, not even believing it can get this cold. You rummage through a few drawers, hear your stomach growl and scream in frustration. Where’s the food?

I know it and you know it. It’s that time of year again, the only time when that glowing white Blunt Alumni Center in the middle of campus doesn’t stick out like a sore thumb. Ned Stark had warned us, “Winter is coming.” The winter blues have made you SAD and you are trying to combat your Seasonal Affective Disorder. Some people turn to sunlamps. Others sleep in. The heartiest drink. I suggest you disregard these unproven approaches and instead choose the tried and true plan of attack, and eat to your heart’s content. Hanover has everything you need. While this tactic may empty out your wallet, I promise it will be a worthwhile investment.

Now onto the food…

The “I don’t want Mr. Deed’s frostbitten feet” expedition:Umpleby’s Nestled in a cozy corner next to the Mountain Goat, this little-known hidden gem is a perfect hideout for those gutsy enough to brave the wintry atmosphere. For the selective individuals who complete the trip, you will find a homey interior a little larger than a regular coffee shop. Definitely try the fruit tart and a heated-up chocolate souffl cake to keep you warm on the trek back to campus.Morano Gelato Named the best gelateria in America by Forbes magazine in 2012, Morano is a Hanover staple in the spring, summer and fall. But don’t shy away from this igloo during the cold months. Try their Affogatos: your choice of hot chocolate or espresso poured over gelato combine the best of both worlds. For those waffling between gelato flavor options to pair with the warm winter drinks, I would recommend caramel or fior di latte, i.e. sweet milk.

The “Burr-it’s way too cold” journey:Starbucks Having finally infiltrated Hanover last term, this “soulless entity,” as described by Dirt Cowboy owner Thomas Guerra, finally brings us some winter classics, albeit adjusted to be more pretentious and pompous. The edibles are nothing special but you can’t go wrong by drowning out their taste with either a grande caramel brulee latte, a peppermint mocha or a mint hot chocolate.

Market Table You can choose to dine in or take out at this half restaurant, half bakery right on the flipside of Starbucks. All the baked goods are homemade. Do not leave the premises without indulging in s’mores and not a single, not a double but a triple chocolate torte (you may not know what it means, but it’s provocative).

The “I’ll go with you if you buy me a pastry” walk:Dirt Cowboy Almost a part of campus, Dirt Cowboy is a regular stop of choice for many Dartmouth students. The next time you come here, or when you are by Collis and want something that actually tastes good, first check out the dessert case on the right side. Dirt Cowboy is offering 50 percent off on all those goodies to showcase its new tiramisu and cannoli. If neither appeals to you, stick to the reliable apple danish or hot chocolate with one of two types of housemade marshmallows: cinnamon spice and chocolate.

The “shorts and sandals run (unless you live in the River)”:Foco Cookies right out of the oven ’nuff said

King Arthur Flour The shortest walk for most people, KAF consistently makes that English essay easier to write and that problem set easier to finish. Surrounded by your friends, casual acquaintances or complete randos, you can be sure you saved yourself a lot of words from complaining about the cold walk to Foco and know that you are getting better food than you would at Novack. Although I am stating the obvious, the sticky buns and cinnamon buns will not let you down. Likewise, the hot chocolate and hot cider will brighten even the gloomiest day.

So when you’re in a dark place on that cold lonely afternoon, bring your wallet and take a walk around Hanover.

From DDS eats to local treats, you never know what delicious treats are waiting. Venture out there and try something new you won’t be disappointed.

Just remember: pastries are always willing and happy to accompany you and be your best friend.

Quick Fixes for Winter Depression

It’s no secret that Hanover winters are generally pretty rough, and for some people they’re much rougher than for others. Seasonal Affective Disorder, which most commonly affects those from sunny climates, is all too real at Dartmouth. But fortunately there’s a lot one can do to combat it.Light therapy: Perhaps the most scientific way to fight SAD is by using a blue light machine (also known as a happy lamp, sun lamp or light therapy lamp). These machines, which look kind of like mini television monitors with blue screens, help the body fight SAD by mimicking daylight. The light from the machine hits the retina in the eye and is transferred via nerve impulses to the pineal gland, which regulates melatonin secretion and thus corrects chemical imbalances that result from decreased exposure to sunlight. As someone from California, I was freaked out about getting SAD and consequently started using a sun lamp back in the Fall. Some of my friends laughed at me, but I found other kindred spirits and we talked about holding sunlamp parties (which is kind of tough since you’re supposed to use them in the morning!). I don’t remember to use my sunlamp every day, but I also haven’t been feeling any lingering symptoms of SAD, so I’d say it’s working! And no, unfortunately they don’t give you a tan.Studying in bright rooms: Forget the Tower Room. If you have to be indoors, pass the time in rooms full of natural light.”I’ve been trying to maximize daylight hours [by] spending times in light rooms so that when the sun sets at like 3 p.m. I’m not terrified, since it’s setting at 6 p.m. back home,” Christie Harrison ’16, a Florida native, said.If you’re trying to reduce your chances of getting SAD, places like the Top of the Hop, Third or Fourth Floor Berry, the Fishbowl in Kemeny or certain study rooms in the dorms are good bets. Playing upbeat music also helps, so I don’t suggest listening to “Boulevard of Broken Dreams.”Spending time outside: Perhaps this is a no brainer, but simply passing time outdoors goes a long way toward fighting SAD. Unlike students at colleges in cold-weather cities, Dartmouth students are lucky that we have such easy access to snow sports. Skating on Occom Pond, snowshoeing on the golf course and spending the day at the Skiway are just some of the many ways to experience the outdoors in and around Hanover. “I’m trying to pick up snowboarding this term,” Kevin Chen ’15 said. Chen, who hails from the San Francisco Bay Area, felt the effects of SAD last winter and is trying not to let that happen again.Exercise, eat well and sleep: Okay, so these things are no-brainers year-round, but they’re even more important in the winter when all you want to do is curl up under a blanket, watch television and eat Collis pasta. Taking a Zumba class, eating your veggies and hitting the sack at a reasonable hour will go a long way toward combatting SAD.And if all else fails, there’s always reverse psychology to help you beat the winter blues.”If I’m having a tough day, I watch an episode of The Walking Dead’ to put things in perspective,” said Michael Bessen ’16, a native of Las Vegas, NV, referencing a post-apocalyptic show in which a small band of survivors battles with a seemingly unending and ravenous zombie horde.That’s one way to do it.

Holed Up For The Winter: Surviving The Coldest Term at Dartmouth

It’s so cold! I can’t believe it’s already dark outside! I can’t wait for the summer! You’re not even a paragraph in here and you’re probably already bored because you’ve heard exactly that countless times today. Probably without the exclamation points. We get it, random person standing in line at Collis, winter just sucks sometimes. Maybe it’d be better if we stopped talking about how awful everything is and started bringing up how beautiful it is. It’s nice to think that for every person who says the cold sucks, there might be another who says “Yay fresh powder, time to hit the slopes!” Being able to enjoy the snow (or ice!) is what makes winter at Dartmouth awesome. “I’m a winter person,” Chuxi Zhang ’16 said. “I teach snowboarding. Part of the reason I wanted to come here was because of the Skiway.”For every person who complains about the cold, someone else came here because of it. They might even be the same person.Because if we’re honest with ourselves, we don’t really have that much “time” to hit the slopes. We’re more likely to be stuck in the library, hitting the books instead of the slopes as we watch the daylight fade to dark before it’s even actually nighttime. Across campus, the cold, dark abyss that is a Hanover winter is enough to have an effect on just about everyone.”I just feel like people do fewer things,” Michael Zhu ’14 said. “Once you go someplace you don’t leave, so campus is less active.”Not wanting to leave the library and face the cold isn’t always a bad thing for your GPA, and potentially your social life. Unfortunately, shorter days may also have the more detrimental affect of making people SAD an appropriate acronym for seasonal affective disorder.You’ve probably read about SAD in an email from your dean, or from some poster around campus or maybe not. But in case you were wondering or even if you weren’t it helps to know what SAD looks like so you can help yourself, or your friends. Because as fun as it is to play with the acronym, it’s not fun to be SAD. Know that the disorder is real, and listen up.”Before coming to Dartmouth, I thought it was some kind of made up disorder something that people used as a scapegoat for the winter blues,” Lindsay Newton ’15, a member of Active Minds, said. “After hearing an Active Minds panel last year, I realized that it is a real affliction. Unfortunately, people stick their noses up at it because the acronym almost makes it seem like a joke.” According to the one and only Web MD, SAD is a type of depression that occurs in the fall and winter months, when the days get shorter. It’s most likely caused by a lack of sunlight, and it’s certain that it’s more than just the winter blues.”Having a depressed mood is the number one sign,” Da-Shih Hu, a psychiatrist at Dick’s House, said. “In contrast to other kinds of depression, SAD is associated with an increased desire for carbohydrates and classic symptoms of depression include low energy levels, decreased concentration and decreased motivation.”Hu said that the onset of SAD usually occurs in the fall, when the days begin to get shorter. But that doesn’t mean it’s too late to get help.As detrimental as SAD can be, it’s unfortunately rare for Dartmouth students to talk about the way the winter might be affecting their mood beyond a common, shallow “It’s cold!””People here are very much overachievers and we tend to ignore the psychological affects of stress,” Gabrielle Forestier ’14, president of Active Minds, said. One of the best things we can do for each other might just be to talk about how we’re feeling.”Active Minds is in part about letting people know that there are options for them to talk to professionals at Dick’s House,” Forestier said. “If it’s simple day-to-day issues, those are great things to talk about, and it prevents you from getting to a place where you have a huge weight to carry. It’s okay to talk about things, even if it’s not a direct conversation about those problems.” If you do need help, there are resources available for every student. Dick’s House offers counseling services and lends out light therapy lamps, and if you want a boost in the library, the Dean’s Office has a happy lamp outside its office that you can sit under whenever, provided someone else hasn’t already snagged the spot.Of course, there are other ways to experience winter here that involve more than just misery even for people like Forestier who come from warmer climates like Miami.”Getting outside during daylight hours can be helpful to maximize the light that we do have,” she said. “Other things like going skating and sledding can be fun and interesting and help you adjust to the winter and to enjoy it.”

Daily Debriefing

The Department of Health and Human Services proposed that health insurance plans self-funded by colleges satisfy the standard for “minimum essential coverage” under the federal health care law’s requirements for qualified plans, Inside Higher Ed reported. The regulation, proposed on Jan. 30, impacts roughly 30 colleges primarily major universities, including many Ivy League institutions and the University of California system. The proposal exempts self-funded plans from coverage requirements imposed by the Affordable Care Act. By self-funding student health plans, institutions can cut operating costs and customize their coverage to the students’ specific needs, according to college officials. Health care advocacy groups have expressed concerns that more institutions are self-funding their health plans because the plans involve minimal government oversight, Inside Higher Ed reported.

Amherst College released a report concluding that it must provide greater support to victims of sexual violence, The Huffington Post reported. The report suggested that improve communication among its health center, counseling center and dean of students’ office, in addition to increasing publicity of its resources for victims. Amherst President Biddy Martin assembled a task force to compile the report in response to an October op-ed by Angie Epifano, who dropped out of Amherst her sophomore year after struggling to find support as a rape victim. Epifano provided a “credible” report of her experience, but the college failed to respond effectively, according to Gina Smith, an attorney assisting Amherst’s reform effort.

A report released by the Association of Public and Land-grant Universities recommends that colleges’ federal financial aid eligibility take into account students’ backgrounds, The Chronicle of Higher Education reported. Requirements that govern institutional eligibility for Pell Grant and student-loan programs should depend on students’ risk of defaulting and be reduced or revoked if a cohort’s repayment rate dips below a set threshold, according to project leader Michael Tanner. Currently, a college loses eligibility if the student cohort default rate exceeds 40 percent in a year or 30 percent in three consecutive years, restrictions intended to support colleges with many students at risk of defaulting. The report, commissioned by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation’s Reimagining Aid Design and Delivery project, also suggests supplying per-student financing for colleges with high retention and completion rates, developing a career advising system for students and restricting the number of new aid recipients at institutions below a determined standard.

Int’l students awarded need-blind financial aid

Dartmouth is one of six schools in the country to offer need-blind financial aid and full-need admission to international students, financial aid director Virginia Hazen said. In 2012, 8 percent of undergraduates were international students.

Hazen said she believes a large portion of international students receive financial aid because of economic differences between their countries of origin and the United States.

While the Financial Aid Office considers the need of international and American students equally, international students receive larger travel allowances because of the distance they must travel.

“I am very pleased that we are able to offer international students aid to meet their need,” Hazen said. “It is a very deserving group of students, and they really add a lot to this campus.”

The Financial Aid Office uses a slightly different procedure to calculate aid eligibility for international students, according to Hazen. Dartmouth uses a different process that accounts for the economic differences.

Dartmouth also accounts for students’ federal loan eligibility, Hazen said. Because international students cannot receive loans from the U.S. government, Dartmouth offers larger loans in order to cover the difference.

The College guarantees to offer aid based on international students’ full demonstrated need, just as they cover the full need of American students, Hazen said. If a student’s family income is less than $100,000 or the equivalent in a foreign currency, the student will generally receive full financial aid.

The College began to offer full need-blind financial need to international students beginning with the Class of 2012, Hazen said.

Prior to that time, the College offered large financial aid packages to international students, making the transition to the full need guarantee relatively smooth. Other schools, however, find it difficult to institute similar policies due to a sudden demand on scholarship funds, she said.

The policy allows the College to attract a more diverse student body, Hazen said.

“For many years, we did not have the policy of need-blind applications that also guaranteed to cover full need,” she said. “However, Dartmouth is very committed to diversity. That is really what is at the root of it we are committed to achieving a diverse student body.”

The office tries to be “fair and realistic” in determining how much aid to offer, Hazen said

“For most financial aid students, their families are also going to have to sacrifice,” she said. “Life does not go on quite the same.”

All students on financial aid are expected to work ten to twelve hours per week every term.

Karolina Krelinova ’14, a student from the Czech Republic, said she currently holds one campus job, but had three the during Fall term. She chose jobs that did not interfere with her schoolwork, she said.

The College’s expectation that international students earn money during their off terms can prove problematic for some students, according to Faizan Kanji ’15, Pakistani student.

“It is very hard to make the amount they are asking from Pakistan because of the difference in economies,” he said.

Many international students look for colleges that offer more financial aid, according to Inviolata Chami ’16, who is from Tanzania.

“Me and all of my friends applying to schools in the U.S. from Tanzania applied to certain schools that had good financial aid policies,” she said.

Several international students said that they would not be able to attend Dartmouth without the financial aid the College offers.

Keshia Naurana Badalge ’16, of Singapore, said that her financial aid package allows her to attend school in the U.S. without participating in a corporate sponsorship program.

These programs are common among Singaporean students and would require her to graduate in three years, work summers and commit to six years of employment after finishing school, she said.

“Due to the aid Dartmouth is giving me, I can fully enjoy the liberal arts education Dartmouth offers, and over breaks I can do various internships or programs.” Naurana Badalge said.

Junaid Yakubu ’16 and Richard Asala ’13, both from Ghana, said that they are completely satisfied with the financial aid they receive.

“I got more than I requested, ” Yakubu said. “They are so good to us international kids. Thanks to the generous financial aid office I can come to Dartmouth.”

Some students expected that need-blind admission for international students would be called off during the recession, according to Utkarsh Agarwal ’13, a student from India.

“During my sophomore year when I served as the president of the International Students Association, we were constantly watching the Kim administration to see if need-blind admissions for the internationals might be revoked due to recessionary pressures,” Agarwal said. “Thankfully, that didn’t happen.”

Nonprofit to host world summit

Fifty delegates from across the globe will gather at the College in April for a world summit to develop projects on issues facing the Middle East and North Africa. The summit, organized by the DAYDREAMS Project, will feature youth leaders representing most Middle Eastern and North African countries in addition to delegates from the United States and Central and Southeast Asia.

DAYDREAMS, founded in the Fall, aims to build an international network of communication and collaboration among young leaders who are engaged in Middle Eastern and North African issues, according to president Luke Decker ’15.

The project, a national nonprofit organization, is run by nine Dartmouth students and one from the University of California, Berkeley.

Decker is a member of The Dartmouth staff.

“Our 2013 Delegates include a number of university valedictorians, Rhodes and Marshall Scholars and Ivy League students, but even beyond these impressive credentials, we share a deep conviction that all 50 delegates will become future leaders who will collectively shape the world in the coming years,” Decker said.

Delegate invitations are open to college students and other young leaders who plan to develop projects that address topics related to the Middle East and North Africa. The delegates will be divided into 12 groups to collaborate on projects which include the Arab-Israeli conflict, education advancement, economic development, global security and the Arab Spring, among others.

The summit aims to aid delegates in fostering initiatives for their own communities and build a network of relationships, Decker said.

“It is my hope that DAYDREAMS will bring together youth activists from every Middle Eastern and North African country with other reform-minded students from the United States and Central and Southeast Asia to engage in constructive collaboration and discussion to improve and develop their plans whether they be about education, trash collection, corruption or human rights,” recruitment and delegate relations director Logan Brog ’15 said in an email. “This is the project’s goal.”

The summit itself aims to bring delegates together with their peers and professional mentors to accomplish mutual goals, according to Brog.

“By learning about other delegates’ initiatives, best practices and engaging in thought-provoking discussions, delegates should leave with a strong network, inspiration on how to improve their plans and the resources to ensure their implementation and success,” he said in the email.

The organization began with the intention of forging international connections, according to Decker.

“The nature of the people that we’re bringing together is unbelievable, and I think the organization is going to plan to exist for many years after this,” he said.

DAYDREAMS hopes to have the inaugural world summit at Dartmouth this year, and eventually at other U.S. campuses and locations abroad, Decker said.

In the coming years, the group could potentially hold summits in the Middle East.

The project became an official student organization during the last week of Fall term.

Because the organization is structured as a nonprofit with a national focus and does not fit into the student organization model of the Council on Student Organizations, it is no longer recognized as an official organization at the College, according to Decker.

Representatives from COSO declined to comment, but confirmed that DAYDREAMS lost COSO recognition.

DREAM, a mentoring organization founded by Dartmouth students in 1999, is also a nonprofit national organization that is not officially recognized by COSO. The program partners with the Tucker Foundation and is run by student mentors, according to program empowerment director Kate Piniewski.

Outside of the Tucker Foundation, the College does not have any official outreach programs specific to the Middle East and North African regions, according to Asian and Middle Eastern studies program chair Allen Hockley.

Dartmouth’s Foreign Study Program in Morocco, however, includes a socially active learning program where students complete community service projects during their stay in the region.

Friedman advocates for foreign policy change

Benjamin Friedman, a research fellow at the Cato Institute, spoke with members of the College Libertarians on Thursday night.

The United States should adopt a national isolationist ideology to correct the negative effects of its current foreign policy, Cato Institute research fellow Benjamin Friedman said in a lecture on Thursday.

Friedman argued that the U.S. military should avoid spreading political ideology in countries with nationalist movements, withdraw from unnecessary alliances and cut the national defense budget.

He said that the U.S. lacked the political wisdom and military power to frequently impose its views on other countries.

“The populations of other countries have their own set ideas,” Friedman said. “We often underestimate their ethnic identities, their nationalism.”

In past centuries, imperial powers were successful on foreign soil because their opponents lacked the communication technology to support nationalist movements, Friedman said.

The advent of the Internet and satellite TV, however, has allowed nationalism to take shape much more easily.

“Today, everyone in a village will know almost immediately if you kill someone in the neighboring village,” Friedman said. “They now have identity groups, they are not just individual tribes and villages.”

These identity groups make organized resistance to American state building projects much easier, he said.

Even if the U.S. did overcome the challenges posed by increased foreign nationalism, it should not assume that it possesses the political wisdom to “fix” foreign governments, Friedman said.

“We are very used to spreading our form of government, but we never stop to think,” he said.

Friedman also argued that the U.S. should not maintain permanent military alliances.

“Alliances can sometimes be very good,” he said. “In World War II, they were very good. But alliances should end when the need for them ends.”

The U.S. does not need to defend Europe in an era when it has no realistic enemies, nor does it need to support Japan and South Korea, which are today surrounded by arguably benign interests, according to Friedman.

“This setup is not in the interest of the American taxpayer,” he said.

Instead of subsidizing foreign militaries, the U.S. should instead encourage other countries to balance their trade and ideologies, he said.

The U.S. Navy should not patrol international trade in peacetime because other countries have an equal stake in completing trade transactions, according to Friedman. Instead, the U.S. should encourage countries to trade peacefully through diplomacy.

Friedman also discussed his view that Americans should be less concerned about homeland security. Countries considered hostile to the U.S. cannot afford to build a competitive military, so they pose no real threat to the U.S. North Korea’s GDP, for instance, is worth a fraction of South Korea’s, and Russia’s GDP is worth the combined value of those of Spain and Portugal. Countries such as China, who can afford to build up their militaries, are actively seeking trade with the U.S.

“We act like we have terrible enemies, but that’s just badly exaggerated,” Friedman said.

Opponents of the isolationist strategy claim that decreasing the defense budget would increase unemployment and harm the economy, Friedman said.

While he conceded that cutting the defense budget would decrease the number of jobs available in the defense industry, other sectors of the economy would have the potential to produce more jobs given the same amount of money.

Over time, cuts to the defense budget would stimulate rather than stunt economic growth, he said.

While Washington has ignored proponents of Friedman’s viewpoint for many years, policy makers are beginning to take steps moving towards a more isolationist foreign policy strategy.

Every other nation in the world currently employs an isolationist foreign policy strategy, Friedman said.

“I think after the wars we got burned, and it’s very sad, but we have to collectively learn like children,” he said.

Friedman, a member of the Class of 2000, majored in government at Dartmouth. For the past five years, he has researched the defense budget, defense politics, military services and homeland security at the Cato Institute, a libertarian think tank in Washington, D.C..

Dartmouth College Libertarians president Will Baird ’15 invited Friedman to speak at the lecture. Baird said that he looked for a speaker who was well regarded in academia and an expert on foreign policy issues.

Foreign policy is often underappreciated among libertarians and deserves more attention at the College, he said.

The Dartmouth community is active in the ongoing discussion of foreign policy strategies, Friedman said.

Friedman’s views, however, are contentious among the faculty.

While government professor William Wohlforth recently published a widely-read article denouncing Friedman’s views, Daryl Press, another government professor who served as Friedman’s senior thesis advisor, published articles supporting an isolationist strategy.

The majority of the lecture’s 15 attendees were members of the Dartmouth College Libertarians, and several said they appreciated his Friedman’s perspective.

“Usually you don’t see a lot of expert academics who are libertarians,” Tanner Hadden ’13 said. “I have definitely heard discussions of isolationist views before, but never by a professional. It’s really nice to see professionals coming on, dedicating their lives to analyzing these policies.”

Diverse language programs foster community, proficiency

The College's language departments offer opportunities for students to immerse themselves in various languages and cultures.

Residents of La Casa Spanish language house gathered to decorate chocolate and funfetti cupcakes Wednesday night, chatting in Spanish about midterms and racquet sports while Latin pop music played softly in the background. That same evening, members of the MAHA Arabic Language Community assembled in Topliff over a dinner of butternut squash pasta while the Russian club congregated for tea and conversation about Alexander Pushkin.

By participating in these types of events, students aim to achieve proficiency in a foreign language while acquiring a cultural context.

Language departments vary in their approaches to extracurricular programming. Some require students to attend a certain number of cultural events during the course of a term, while others encourage students to organize their own activities. For the College’s language departments to be competitive with those at peer institutions, students should be “eating, breathing and living” the language they are studying, rather than simply sitting in class for an hour each day, according to Jacob Sotak ’13, who participates in the Arabic community. Activities outside of the classroom provide students with a different method for developing language proficiency.

“It makes students take a certain amount of ownership over their language,” Sotak said. Most departments offer weekly lunch meetings for students to practice their language skills. These gatherings provide students with an informal setting to practice speaking and connect with upperclassmen or native speakers they might not meet otherwise. The Japanese lunch table, a joint effort of the student-run Dartmouth Japan Society and the Asian and Middle Eastern languages and literatures department, offers novice language students a chance to meet upperclassmen who have already completed the program’s introductory courses.

Upperclassmen become mentors for new students and “nurture their path and their passion,” Japanese professor Mayumi Ishida said. The table also provides professors an opportunity to socialize with their students.

Conversing in a foreign language with friends who are native speakers exposes students to a less formal register of the language, Japan Society president Christian Opperman ’13 said.

Speaking with native speakers or upperclassmen who have studied abroad teaches students new words that are often different from the vocabulary included in the language curriculums.

Chinese Noodle Hour, a weekly event hosted at the Chinese Language House, has historically attracted approximately 30 to 40 students per week, according to Chinese professor Susan Blader.

Each lunch hour includes a cultural component, such as calligraphy workshops, performances by Chinese storytellers or student presentations on Foreign Study Programs. One year, students had the opportunity to meet with Taiwanese-American film director Ang Lee.

For 20 years, students taking Portuguese or those interested in Lusophone culture have attended Cafezhino, a weekly gathering with coffee and conversation, according to Portuguese professor Rodolfo Franconi. They congregate on Monday afternoons in a room in Dartmouth Hall called “Ponto de Encontro.”

Practicing speaking skills is only one part of learning a foreign language. Studying history, culture and literature is essential, Hebrew professor Lewis Glinert said.

“It’s as important for being able to function in the Arabic world or Chinese world to know the classic texts or folk songs as it is to be able to go out and ask for an ice cream,” he said.

Faculty affiliated with the Chinese portion of the AMELL program organize public lectures and workshops to bring students together and expose them to different aspects of Chinese culture.

“We try to introduce our students to so much more than just the language,” Blader said. The French and Italian department organizes a number of cultural activities for its students, according to department chair Graziella Parati said.

Next week, Italian students will meet with members of the Venice Baroque Orchestra, which is performing at the Hopkins Center, she said.

The German Club often hosts movie screenings, game nights and cooking get-togethers. The club will host a ski excursion and party on Feb. 2.

In Germany, after a long day of skiing, it is typical to head to the bar and listen to German folk music with friends. By recreating this tradition, students will gain “a unique insight into German and Austrian culture,” said Kim Vahnenbruck, a German Studies department Fulbright language teaching assistant.

Membership in different language clubs fluctuates by term, according to students and professors. There are currently housing programs for Chinese, Spanish, Portuguese, Arabic, French, Italian and German speakers.

Overheards

’13 Girl: What the hell is Tinder? Everyone and their mom is asking about it.’14 Girl: It’s like a dating app.’13 Girl: Is there a hit it and quit it app?

’15 Girl: I’m pretty sure I just pooped at the thought of eating a Hop burrito.

’16 Guy: I heard that you get some sort of cane with a snake on it at graduation if you write a thesis.

’14 Girl: Remember when we took Bailey’s shots and chased them with Cheerios?’14 Girl 2: Yeah, things went downhill sophomore year.

’13 Guy: Do you think my professor will think I’m more responsible if I submit this during meetings?

English 42 TA: I watched this movie on my honeymoon and it didn’t interrupt any of the normal honeymoon activities.

’14 Girl: I can’t wear my fur vest on Tuesdays and Thursdays because that’s when I have my animal rights class.

’13 Girl: You see, poverty is not my thing.

Top 5 Movies for a Cold Day Indoors

  1. “Heathers,” the ’80s cult classic high school drama features some of the best hair and best outfits ever shown in feature-length film.
  2. “Drop Dead Gorgeous,” a mockumentary about beauty pageant contestants in Minnesota. Strong enough accents to keep you laughing through the cold.
  3. “The Day After Tomorrow,” a disaster flick starring Jake Gyllenhaal that shows that things could always get worse, weather-wise.
  4. “Jaws,” a movie scary enough to require a cuddle buddy while simultaneously reminding you that you’re not always missing out when you’re not at the beach.
  5. “10 Things I Hate About You,” because every cold day needs a happy ending. Preferably featuring Heath Ledger.