ISLE Program

Fall 2008 Getting There

The Big Journey

The students have been busy preparing throughout the summer, and finally the time has arrived for them to embark on their journey. Meanwhile in Sri Lanka, ISLE faculty and staff have been engaged in intensive preparations and planning to ensure that the coming ISLE semester is a success.

After a busy summer, the students began their journey to Sri Lanka on Tuesday August 25th. For some, the day began very early indeed, but they all convened that afternoon at Chicago's O'Hare airport for a meeting with ISLE Administrative Director Dr. Sree Padma Holt and ISLE Program Assistant Katie Berringer before embarking on the international portion of their journey.

Padma, Sarah, Kate, Pete and Bryanna

Padma, Sarah, Kate, Pete and Bryanna meet at O'Hare.

Dan, Katie and Alex

Dan, Katie and Alex at O'Hare

Jen, Dan, Padma

Jen, Dan and Padma at O'Hare

Bryanna and Dan

Bryanna (left) and Pete (right)

Alex naps in Frankfurt

Alex takes a nap in Frankfurt before the group's flight to Colombo.

Arrival in Colombo and on to Kandy

Arrival in Colombo

Afther their long flights, the students looked surprisingly cheerful upon arrival at Colombo's Bandaranaike International airport at 5:00AM.

Bryanna, Sarah, Dan, and Kate at airport

Bryanna, Sarah, Dan, and Kate waiting in line at the airport in Colombo.

Jen greets Sumanasena

Jen meets the group's driver and all around guide, Sumanasena.

tea and breakfast stop

Alex, Pete, Program Director Roger Vetter, and Sumanasena chat at a tea and
breakfast stop along the Colombo-Kandy road.

breakfast stop 2

Sumanasena, Kate, Sarah, Jen, Dan, and Bryanna enjoying tea at the
rest stop en route to Kandy.

group photo

The students pose for their very first group photo.

Kandy Hotel View

The view from the group's hotel in Kandy.

Dan, Alex and Sarah enjoy the view

Dan, Alex, and Sarah take in the view from the group's hotel balcony.

Kate, Dan, Pete, and Sarah

Kate, Dan, Pete, and Sarah fight off jet-lag at the hotel.

Back to School- First Sinhala Class

The students arrived on Thursday, and on Friday, they had their first Sinhala class at 8:00 AM. They will need Sinhala language skills throughout their stay in Sri Lanka.

First Sinhala class

Sarah, Kate, Pete, Bryanna, and Alex at their first Sinhala class with Professor Liyanage and his assistant monk Wijitha.

Sinhala Class 2

Pete, Bryanna, Alex, Jen, and Dan with Roger and Val Vetter at their
first Sinhala class.

University of Peradeniya: Getting to Know the Campus and the Students

After their morning Sinhala class, on Friday afternoon the students were given a tour of the University of Peradeniya, and then attended a tea with local university students.

The Whole Group

The whole group on their tour of the Peradeniya University.

University Tea

Sarah, Kate, Alex, and Peter make friends with University of Peradeniya
students over tea.

Jen and Uni students

Jen chats with two Peradeniya students.

Sandamali and Bryanna

Sinhala instructor Sandamali has tea with Bryanna.

Meet the Host Parents

On Saturday afternoon, the students met their host families at a festive tea at the ISLE Center.

Jen, Pete, and Peter's host mother

Jen, Pete, and Pete's host mother help themselves to some tea.

Alex and host father

Alex and his host father get to know each other.

Sarah, Kate and host mothers

Sarah and Kate ("the Kiribathkumbura girls") with their host mothers. Sarah and Kate will both be living in nearby Kiribathkumbura village.

Dan, Val, Dan's host parents

Dan and Val Vetter with Dan's host father and brothers.

Bryanna and host family

Bryanna with her host family.

Roger and the de Silvas

Roger Vetter with ISLE host family coordinators, Mr. and Mrs. de Silva.

Jen, host parents and Rosemary

Jen and her host parents with the ISLE Center Manager, Rosemary Chunchie.

The Language Learning Continues

Sinhala class

Professor W.A. Liyanage introduces Jen, Bryanna, Dan, Alex, Val, and Roger to Sinhala studies in the ISLE Center's
open air classroom.

Sandamali helps Kate

Assistant Sinhala instructor Sandamali helps Sarah and Kate.

Roger and Val practice

Program Director Roger Vetter and his wife Val practice their Sinhala alongside the ISLE students.

Dan's quiz

Dan's second Sinhala letter quiz.