¿Qué Pasa? Quoi De Neuf? Novità? Department News Abounds (8.1)
Our Chinese language program is off to a great start this year! Our professor, Jie Li, has coordinated several events on campus which were well-attended. Look for Intermediate Mandarin Chinese in the Fall 2011 schedule! See the leading article in this issue of Lingua Franca.
The Arabic program keeps growing, with two new post-intermediate courses: ARA 301 and ARA 302, which will also make it easier for students to minor in Arabic. A second instructor of Arabic has joined the faculty: Dr. Joseph Hitti. Dr. Hitti is a native of Lebanon and he will be joining Dr. Dr. Mohamed Abdelfattah as Arabic instructor in the department. See the interview with Dr. Hitti in this issue of Lingua Franca.
Prof. Blood will be on sabbatical in Spring 2011. Questions for the chairperson should be directed to Acting Chair, Dr. Fátima Serra. Questions about French should be directed to Dr. Anna Rocca, who will serve as interim coordinator of the French language programs.
The Department of Foreign Languages hosted a presentation by Mario Ruiz Lejido, Representative from the Instituto Cervantes in Boston. Mr. Lejido gave undergraduate and graduate students valuable information on cultural events and language teaching resources and workshops available through the Aula Cervantes and their online services.
The Department of Foreign Languages and the CIE hosted a presentation by Francisco García Díez, Education Advisor of the Spanish Embassy. Mr. García Díez guided students through the application process to become Cultural Ambassadors in Spain for one year, an opportunity that is paid for by the Spanish Ministry of Education.
The Department of Foreign Languages has strengthened its relationships with local institutions including the Clarke Elementary School in Swampscott where four SSU students are participating in the Spanish Enrichment Program by teaching Spanish to k-4 students. Real-world opportunities are also being expanded through the expansion of our Community Placement Program which has added several new affiliations including: Salem High School, the Saltonstall School, and the Massachusetts Probate Court.
The International Languages Fair, held by the International Student Association and the Department of Foreign Languages in November, was a great success. The ISA and French Club are planning a similar special event in spring to celebrate “La semaine de la Francophonie” combining native French speakers from Africa and Haiti along with students of French at Salem State! Look for announcements in March!
This semester has been a busy one for the Department of Foreign Language’s faculty. For the first time in ten years, the American Council on Teaching Foreign Languages (ACTFL) brought its annual conference to Boston. Taking advantage of this proximity, Professors Anna Rocca, Elizabeth Blood, Michele Dávila, Nicole Sherf, and Kenneth Reeds presented on a variety of subjects: “Les Francophones d’ici: Franco-Americans in Massachusetts” (Dr. Blood with Dr. Carole Salmon from Umass-Lowell); “Enseñando literatura puertorriqueña desde ‘Arroz con leche’ a ‘Encancaranublado’” (Dr. Dávila); “Advocating for an Elementary Foreign Language Program in Your District” (Dr. Sherf); and “How to Read and Approach Cultural Differences and Stereotypes” (Drs. Rocca and Reeds).
The 2011 North East Modern Language Association (NEMLA) conference will be held in New Jersey where Dr. Rocca will chair a panel titled “Exploration of Senses in Contemporary Francophone Women’s Autobiography” and a paper on the author Nina Bouraoui entitled: “Senses, Sensibility, and Sensuality: the World of Nina Bouraoui.” Dr. Rocca will also soon chair a panel at the Conseil International d’Etudes Francophones (CIEF) conference in Aix-en-Provence, France. Continuing with experiences outside of the Massachusetts area, various members of the department participated in events: Dr. Dávila published the article “‘Elemental mi querido Watson’: variaciones y transgresiones de la novela detectivesca en el Caribe hispano” which she had originally presented in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, in August 2010; Dr. Reeds presented “El civilizado sobre el bárbaro: el empleo de William Henry Hudson en la obra de Jorge Luis Borges” at the Coloquio Literario de la Feria Internacional del Libro de Monterrey in Monterrey, Mexico; and Dr. Serra presented “Instrucciones para salvar el mundo de Rosa Montero y Elena Poniatowska” at the Cuarto Congreso Internacional Escritura, Individuo y Sociedad en España, las Américas y Puerto Rico, Universidad de Puerto Rico-Arecibo (see her article about meeting the author later in this issue of Lingua Franca).
Other publications of note were Dr. Dávila’s “Lo que nos hace humanos: deconstruyendo El pintor de batallas de Arturo Pérez-Reverte” in Hipertexto; Dr. Doll’s translation and interview of August Bover “Long Distance Call” in The Seventh Quarry Poetry Magazine in the United Kingdom; Drs. Doll and Sherf published “A View from Higher Ed” in the Massachusetts Foreign Language Association (MaFLA) Newsletter where Dr. Sherf also served as Guest Editor for a special assessment-focused issue in Winter 2010.
Graduate Honors. On Wednesday evening, November 10, the University honored graduate students who had achieved a GPA of 3.85 or higher. The event was held in Veteran’s Hall at the Ellison Campus Center. Please join us in recognizing the academic excellence of the following MAT in Spanish students: