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Kent State’s Foreign Language Academy Expands Program

Posted Apr. 12, 2010

Kent State University’s Foreign Language Academy received a combined total of $197,795 in federal grants for 2010. The Foreign Language Academy and its workshops focus on enriching high school students’ and teachers’ capabilities of learning and grasping world languages that are not widely taught in the United States.

The Student Foreign Language Academy Grant was worth $99,950, while the teacher grant was worth $97,845. The grant money will be used for program expansion, as well as funding for students enrolled in the Foreign Language Academy, which provides free room and board.

For the first time, critical language teachers will have a chance to participate in a weeklong language workshop this summer. Participating critical language teachers will learn best practices in language education and in language teacher development.

Kent State’s Foreign Language Academy Co-Director Dr. Brian Baer said the teacher workshop grant will help develop teachers’ teaching tactics that will help provide an ultimate learning environment.

“We’ve learned so much through different workshops that we wanted to pass along the same knowledge to other teachers,” Baer said. “We realized critical language teachers need support so they can educate students to become successful in these languages. This grant gives us the opportunity to do that.”

Baer and co-director Theresa Minick wrote and applied for these grants in October 2009.

During the summer, students participate in an intensive four-week program where they learn, live and develop cross-cultural skills they can use in the future. 

Minick said the academy helps students toward achieving their future goals and careers.

“There is a demand for employees with critical languages skills, and these students will be able to contribute to the ongoing process of internationalization in regional, state and national economies,” she said. “These programs help to prepare students to become global citizens who are able to communicate with people of different cultures. The grants provide opportunities for teacher development and provide students with the language skills and cross-cultural skills to be successful in this global economy.”

Students also earn college credit through the Foreign Language Academy.

The Foreign Language Academy and workshops will begin in June. For more information about the Foreign Language Academy, contact Baer at 330-672-1813.

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Media Contacts:
Jennifer Larson, jlarson@kent.edu, 330-672-1801
Emily Vincent, evincen2@kent.edu, 330-672-8595