2007
If it's all Greek to you, you probably need to take a Chinese language course

If it's all Greek to you, you probably need to take a Chinese language course
June 28, 2007

Phil Brozynski, Media Relations Manager
(630) 829-6094
pbrozynski@ben.edu

China, with a population of more than 1.3 billion people, is the fastest growing economic superpower in the world. If countries like the United States are to remain competitive with China, students must learn to read, write and speak Chinese. This fall, Benedictine University will offer its students a first-year language course in Chinese and a second year of Arabic thanks to its participation in the Fulbright Foreign Language Teaching Assistant (FLTA) program. The FLTA, established in 1968 and sponsored by the U.S. Department of State, provides an opportunity for young, international teachers to refine their teaching skills and extend their knowledge of the culture and customs of the United States while engaging in non-degree studies at their host institutions. Benedictine University will host two foreign language teaching assistants this fall, providing students with an opportunity to learn the language of two key players on the international stage and gain insight into the culture and customs of China and the Middle East. “This program will be a real enhancement for our students both culturally and academically,” said Elizabeth Kubek, Ph.D., chair of the Department of Language and Literature at Benedictine University. Prior to this fall, Benedictine University did not offer Chinese and could only offer one year of Arabic. The addition of the two FLTAs will allow Benedictine to expand its language offerings and better prepare its students to participate in an increasingly global society. FLTAs, on the other hand, may engage in academic study that will enrich their postgraduate studies and enhance their professional development, will learn first-hand about the United States, its culture and its people, and will return home with a higher degree of proficiency in English. Kubek admitted that one of the attractions for FLTAs was Benedictine University’s proximity to Chicago and its many and varied cultural attractions. “Both of the FLTAs cited our closeness to the city as one of the reasons they wanted to teach here,” Kubek said.

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Benedictine University is an independent Roman Catholic institution located in Lisle, Illinois just 25 miles west of Chicago. Founded in 1887, Benedictine provides 56 undergraduate majors, 16 graduate and four doctorate programs. The Chronicle of Higher Education recently ranked Benedictine University as the seventh fastest-growing campus among private nonprofit master’s universities, and Forbes magazine named Benedictine among the top 20 percent of America’s colleges for 2011. Benedictine University’s Master of Business Administration (M.B.A.) program is listed by Crain’s Chicago Business as the fourth largest in the Chicago area in 2011.