Prof. Taqi Abdulredha Al Abdwani, Gulf College (GC) Dean and Dr. Bahman Akbari, Persian Language Centre (PLC) Manager and Islamic Republic of Iran’s Cultural Counsellor to Muscat have recently pushed on the green button as they signed the Memorandum of Understanding on the 6th of July 2017 to officially declare the unleashing of GC-PLC power for the promotion of both Arabic and Persian languages in the Sultanate, in the GCC Region, and around the world. Present in the signing ceremony were some GC key officials namely Dr. Shameena Mehtab, Deputy Dean for Quality Assurance and Partnerships; Mr. Masood Ahmed Khan, Head of the Faculty of Foundation Studies; Dr. Khalid Abu Zayed, Head of the Faculty of Business and Management Studies; Mr. Abubucker Samsudeen Shaffi, Head of the Faculty of Computing Sciences; Ms. Aisha Ghazi Haider, Manager of the Pearson Examination Centre; Mr. Peyman Nouraey, Coordinator of the Centre for Research and Entrepreneurship; and Dr. Irene Pineda Villareal, Manager of the Centre for Languages and Cultural Studies.
The partnership has subsequently resulted in the launching of free fresh Persian courses in August and September and the eventual offering of the Persian Language as an optional course in the first semester of the academic year 2017-2018. GC and PLC’s cultural link will be heightened by different exhibitions of handicrafts, paintings, and books. Viewing of Iranian films with Arabic and English subtitles and the rendition of Iranian traditional folk music will definitely tighten their cultural grip.
Iran’s generosity is showcased by its policy encouraging students to take Persian Language continuously for a free two-week trip to Iran through its embassy in Oman to get involved in commerce and trade.
Particularly notable is the teaching of Farsi, the endonym of the Iranian Language, to the elites of the Sultanate by the ever charismatic and enthusiastic Cultural Counsellor himself whose overwhelming interest escalates the number of the Farsi-struck wannabes.