Adjusting to Russian Culture in America

Liz Brustman is a first-year student at DePauw. She is from Delaware. Her mother is Russian, and she has been able to pick up the language as well as the culture.

HerCampus: Thank you so much for meeting with me tonight! How has your semester been off to so far? 

Liz Brustman: My semester has been really fun! Love all of my classes and am really happy to be back.

HC: You come from a Russian background; what was that like growing up? 

LB: Coming from a Russian background was definitely extremely beneficial for me because it was an easy way to learn about another culture outside of America. I was able to learn Russian, which I probably wouldn't have accomplished without growing up with a Russian mom.

HC: Are there certain aspects of Russian culture that you prefer over American? Or vice versa?

LB: In Russian culture, people are much more straight-forward and even if they come off as rude, they don't sugar coat questions/answers; they get straight to the point. But Russians are also very aggressive people if I'm being honest, (she laughs) and many of them tend to be in others' business a lot of the time.

HC: Did/ do you feel as though your ability to speak in Russian was beneficial? 

LB: For me personally, the ability to speak Russian has definitely been beneficial since my grandmother doesn't know English too well. Therefore, communicating with her in Russian is much easier, and I probably would not have been as close to her as I am now if it weren't for the language.

HC: Do you wish to live in Russia, or maybe abroad? Any other place in mind? 

LB: I went to Russia over the summer and absolutely loved it. However, the job opportunities are a bit more limited in Russia as opposed to the U.S. because their job connections really are everything and from my perspective and my mom’s, it's much harder to make a good living as opposed to in the U.S. With that said, I would consider living in Russia for a couple years but not permanently. As for traveling to other places, I'd love to go back to Spain so I can learn Spanish.

HC: Thank you so much for meeting with me! It's been great talking to you!

LB: Thank you so much for interviewing me!