Over 120 Hoosiers spent a recent Saturday in Indianapolis plotting the major routes and by-ways of a roadmap leading toward increased world language learning in Indiana.
“We are starting at a deficit,” acknowledged Michael Nugent before the crowd gathered at the first Indiana Language Roadmap Summit February 10. Director of the Defense Language and National Security Education Office, Nugent had a sympathetic audience. Most of those in attendance were all too aware of the relatively low level of world language learning across the country and had a stake in increasing it for their state.
The summit brought leaders from the business, education, government, health care, and law enforcement communities together to start drawing a roadmap whereby the state of Indiana could increase access to world language learning. “Access is about providing doors for students to learn new languages,” explained Hilary Kahn, principal investigator for the project, and assistant dean of international education and global initiatives at the Indiana University School of Global and International Studies. “Equity is ensuring all students have the chance to walk through them.”