Posts Tagged ‘Mina Johnson’

In a couple days from now, I will be on the longest flight I have ever taken, en route to a country nothing like I have ever seen before, and I could not be more excited (and anxious).

New adventures and experiences are kind of my thing, so when I heard about this opportunity to travel to Mumbai for a month, I knew I could not pass it up. In addition, Syracuse University is the only university to offer an abroad program like this.

Trips growing up consisted of spending a week at a cottage in Rhode Island or a trip to Florida, but we have never stepped foot out of the country together. Don’t get me wrong, I would not trade those vacations for anything, but going to India is a trip of a lifetime. It’s not your typical vacation and it’s exactly what I need at this stage of my life. I get to be interning within an industry I hope to see myself in one day all while gaining exposure to a new culture and lifestyle.

Since I’ve been home from school, I’ve gotten my fair share of questions about this trip to “Bollywood”: “What’re you going to be doing there?”, “Are you ready for what you’re about to see?”, “Do you know how hot it’s going to be!?” – the list goes on and on. My responses for all these questions have blurred together, but what I do know for sure is that I am ready to take on the challenges that India has in store for me. I want to come back from this adventure with so much to share, talk and reflect about that it’ll drive my family and friends nuts.

Hop on for the ride! I hope India can handle us!


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Syracuse University is back in “Bollywood” for a fourth time. Follow our blog and follow us on Twitter also. #SUBollywood

Students travel to Bollywood, study with Indian filmmakers

May 4, 2012

By Wendy S. Loughlin • (315) 443-2785

Nine students from the Newhouse School will soon embark on a 15-hour flight to Mumbai, India, as part of the SU Abroad course “Bollywood Snapshots: SU Internships in Mumbai.” This is the fourth time the course has been offered.

Under the direction of Tula Goenka, associate professor of television-radio-film in the Newhouse School, the four-week internship course allows students to work directly with Indian filmmakers and production companies.

The course is based at leading Bollywood director Subhash Ghai’s Whistling Woods International (WWI) Institute for Film, Television and Media Arts, and various other locations in Mumbai. Students will leave on May 18 and return to the United States on June 20. As in past years, the trip will include a visit to the Taj Mahal in Agra.

“I was so impressed the first time I visited Whistling Woods International campus in 2007, I knew I had to share it with my students,” says Goenka. “Since then, I have brought 30 Newhouse students to Bombay to receive hands-on experience in the Hindi film and television industry. It’s a life-changing experience for them, and it never would have been possible without WWI.”

Despite recent legal issues regarding the land deal that allowed WWI to be built, Goenka says the institute is “ready to welcome students with open arms once again.”

The students will blog about their experiences at https://subollywood2012.wordpress.com. Follow them on Twitter via #SUBollywood.

Participating students include Gautam Badgujar, Anthony DiBiase, Alexandra Hayes, Mina Johnson, Luis Lopez, Iris Park, Kelvin Sherman, Danielle Skipper and Kishauna Soljour.

Goenka, who was born and raised in India, has more than 30 years of experience in the film and television industry. She serves as co-director of SU’s annual Illuminating Oppression: Human Rights Film Festival. She is currently in post-production on a documentary film on Mithila painters in the Madhubani region of Bihar, India. Her book, “Not Just Bollywood: Conversations with Indian Movie Directors,” will be published later this year by Om Books International.

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