GREAL Alumni Newsletter - December 2012

December 2012
Volume 13, Issue 1


This semester the department boasts 105 majors ( 45 in East Asian Languages and Cultures, 33 in Russian, East European, and Eurasian Studies, and 27 in German Studies) and 145 minors (29 in Arabic, 65 in Chinese, 25 in German, 13 in Japanese, and 13 in Russian and Russian, East European, and Eurasian Studies). We are busy but happy! Best wishes to everyone for a joyous holiday season!

-- Margaret Ziolkowski GREAL Chair,


No fewer than five recent GREAL graduates have been awarded prestigious English Teaching Assistantships Fulbright Awards for 2012-2103.

Timothy Boll - Russian, Eastern European, and Eurasian Studies Major Fulbright English Teaching Assistantship to Russia

Daniel Hawk - Majors in Diplomacy and Global Politics and German Fulbright English Teaching Assistantship to Germany

Joseph 'Harrison' King- 2011 Alumnus, Russian, Eastern European, and Eurasian Studies Major, Junior Fellow at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, Rhodes Scholar Semi-Finalist.Fulbright English Teaching Assistantship to Azerbaijan

Corbin Mathias - 2011 German alumnus, Double major in German Education and German, Fulbright English Teaching Assistantship to Germany

Elizabeth Bersin - 2011 Alumna, German Minor, Fulbright English Teaching Assistantship to Austria, will be living in Graz

A Linguistics Major, Katelin Burke, was also awarded a Fulbright, with a placement in Mongolia. Dr. Jeep (GREAL) directs Miami's Linguistics Program


Former Intensive German Summer Student Megan Dilcher (2013), a German Education Major, spent the Fall Semester student teaching in Luxembourg.


For the third consecutive year, the Max Kade Foundation (New York) has supported Miami German majors and minors on the Intensive German Summer Program. This year's support totaled $11,250, and went towards student program expenses, including housing, travel, and excursions, for fifteen participants. Miami University is grateful to Max Kade for their ongoing commitment to German Studies and Study Abroad.


GREAL's numerous Language and Culture Programs participated in a College of Arts and Science Fair for talented high school students. Prospective students came from as far away as Florida in late September to learn about Miami's Global offerings under the topic, "Discover the World." Miami's early decision numbers have grown the past two years. Funding from the Hovel Endowment


Succeeding Miriam Seidel, who Miami's Intensive German Summer Program stay in Jena with enthusiasm and grace for ten years, is Uwe Baum. We thank Miriam for her long-standing commitment to our students coordinated and her tireless efforts on our behalf.


CHI 257-Chinese Satire, will be taught by Prof. Xiuwu Liu Spring 2013.


Four Miami German Majors studied in Munich with the Wayne State Junior Year in Munich Program 2011-12: Amy Newman completed her year at the Munich Technical University, while Colin Sexton, Leah Schade, and Sarah Beaumont (also majoring in Russian) attended the Ludwig Maximilian University.  Prof. Jeep, member of the Executive Advisory Committee (succeeding Ruth H. Sanders), visited the Munich campus in June. 


Trevor Cook, East Asian Language/ Culture (China concentration) and International Studies Major, was a recipient of a Freeman Award for Study in Asia (Freeman-ASIA). Trevor is currently studying with CET Intensive Chinese Language Program in Beijing. He also won a Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship to support his study with the program. He will return to Miami next fall to finish his degree at Miami.

Japanese majors Alexandra Algava and Lyric Goins, and International Studies major and Japanese minor MaryEllen Reider have been selected to participate in an exchange program at Kansai Gaidai Univerity in Japan, Spring 2013.


Alexandra Winters (Chinese minor, 2012), has joined the master's program of social work at Ohio University. The program focuses on clinical social work with a specific concentration on rural communities.

Ty Gilligan (2011) continues his graduate work in Political Science at Miami University.

Cristina Rue (German 2011) is pursuing graduate studies at Georgetown University and enjoying Washington, DC; most recently, she has become an associate at Chlopak, Leonard, Schechter & Associates.

Chrstine Zielke (German, Chinese 2011) is deep in her Peace Corps work in Botswania, working on AIDS/HIV projects. An earlier assignment was cancelled by the Peace Corps due to increased violence in the country.

GREAL Merger!  Jessica Palmer (Japanese major 2011) and Sean Taylor (Japanese minor 2011) married in May.

Elizabeth Garrett (German 2010) is in the University of Michigan Graduate School of Information Program (M.A.).

Matt Rust (German 2010) is Global Service Specialist at Mettler-Toledo International, with frequent assignments in Switzerland.

Amy Peterson (German 2009) is a Sales Representative for Berlitz Nederland (Amsterdam).

Kevin Resor (German 2009) works for Nielson in Diisseldorf, Germany.

Carly Peselnick (East Asian Language/ Culture major with China concentration 2008), started a new career with the Department of Defense after she complete her master's degree in Chinese at OSU. While she could not reveal details of the position, she was happy to report that the job enables her to work directly with Chinese language.

Alexander Hess (German 2008) completed law studies at Tulane University, and has been offered a JAG Corps position with the US Army.

Heather Miller Martin (German 2008) is currently living in London, where she is Enterprise Account Executive for Pervasive Software.

Jen Black (German 2002) is an Account Executive with MetLife in Broadview Hieights.

Meredith Leland Theelan (German 2000) lives and works in The Netherlands.

Natalie Brooke Soto (German 1999) teaches German and Spanish, and is pursuing graduate work in English at Northern Illinois University.

Ria Kawashima Nieboer (Russian, 1996) gaduated with Masters in Social Work in June 2011, and is currently working as a mental health- substance abuse therapist at PathwaysMI in Holland, MI.

Jon Valentine (German 1995) is Georgia's State Foreign Language Coordinator, after teaching German for seven years.

Jeffrey Holbrock (German 1994) is pursuing graduate work in International Political Economy of Resource at the Colorado School of Mines.

Lisa Ross Richardson (German 1984) serves as the World Language Department Chair at Avon (Indiana) High School, where she has taught German for 25 years.

Constance Ditzel (German 1975) is Senior Editor (acquisitions) for Music at Routledge Press in New York. Following graduation, Constance worked in Munich for three years. She last visited Oxford in 2010.

Let us and your former peers know what you are doing, and please include your year of graduation. Send your news to


Elizabeth Bergman was promoted to Associate Professor with tenure. GREAL's first Arabic minors graduate this May (seep. 2).

Todd Cesaratto, VAP, has signed an advanced contract on his book (Northwestern UP), Achilles' Line: "Der Mann ohne Eigenschaften," Robert Musil, Nik/as Luhmann and Mad Men; Todd was also a runner-up for Miami University's Faculty Diversity Award

Vitaly Chernetzky will teach in Luxembourg, and lead a study tour that will be part of a first ever Russian literature course at MUDEC in spring 2013.

Mila Ganeva returns after spending the academic year on sabbatical.

John M. Jeep, GREAL Chief Departmental Advisor and Director and Advisor, Linguistics, is chair of a search for a new assistant professor of German.

Noriko Reider served as a judge for Japan-America Society of Central Ohio Japanese Language Speech Contest (high school and college students) in March, and published an article titled "Hanayo no hime ," or "Blossom Princess" A LateMedieval Japanese Stepdaughter Story and Provincial Customs," in Asian Ethnology 70 (2011).

Lalita Saytal will offer a new course on Bollywood Film, a first at Maimi, Spring 2013.

Liang Shi conducts the 6th Miami Summer Intensive Chinese Program in Tianjin this summer.

Benjamin Sutcliffe continues work on a co-authored monograph on the contemporary Russian author Liudmila Ulitskaia.

Nicole Thesz goes on sabbatical for the 2012-13 academic year, to finishing her book on Giinter Grass.

Former Colleagues

Ruth Sanders attended this year's GREAL A wards ceremony, presenting copies of her book, German: Biography of a Language (Oxford UP) to graduates.

Peter Carels continues teaching and performing on his many drums.