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Strategic Plan News and Accomplishments

Kent State’s Department of Modern and Classical Language Studies Awarded $225,000 in Grants

Posted Mar. 18, 2014

Kent State University professors Brian James Baer, Ph.D., and Theresa Minick, from the Department of Modern and Classical Language Studies, have been awarded $225,000 in grants from the federal government STARTALK program to fund the 2014 Foreign Language Academy. The STARTALK program is a presidential initiative that seeks to expand and improve the teaching of strategically important world languages that are not now widely taught in the United States. This year’s Foreign Language Academy will consist of a student program for new learners of Chinese and Russian and a teacher training program for K-12 teachers of these languages.

2014 marks the eighth year of the student academy, a four-week summer immersion program housed in Kent State’s Honors College, which is followed by an academic-year component consisting of monthly on-site sessions supported by online instruction. Students receive five college credits upon successful completion of the program. The Student Academy targets rising juniors and seniors in high school who are new learners of these languages and is entirely free for Ohio students.

Since its founding, the Kent State Foreign Language Academy has served more than 300 Ohio high school students, and its alumni have continued to study the languages they began at the academy at some of the most demanding language programs in the country. Several students have received federal government National Security Language Initiative for Youth (NSLI-Y) grants to continue their language study in Russia and China.

The Teacher Leadership Academy, which is now in its fifth year, will host K-12 teachers of Chinese and Russian from all over the United States. The focus of this year’s teacher academy will be the implementation of the latest Web 2.0 technologies in a problem-solving curriculum.

For more information about the Foreign Language Academy at Kent State, visit http://fla.mcls.kent.edu.

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Media Contacts:
Brian Baer, bbaer@kent.edu, 330-672-2150
Emily Vincent, evincen2@kent.edu, 330-672-8595