DLIFLC receives new Command Sergeant Major

DLIFLC receives new Command Sergeant Major

By Natela Cutter DLIFLC Public Affairs   MONTEREY, Calif. – After serving successfully at the Defense Language Institute Foreign Language Center for two years, Command Sgt. Major Ryan Ramsey relinquished his role as the institute’s most senior enlisted leader to Command Sgt. Major Thomas Donehue on Soldier Field at the Presidio of Monterey June 1. “I’ve served in many capacities here at DLI and am humbled to serve as the Command Sgt. Major for this historic installation… My experiences here prepared me to serve in the operational force and reach my potential as a Soldier,” said Donehue, adding that he entered a recruiting station 26 years ago in Beaufort, South Carolina, requesting to go to California. “This institute means the world to me.  I have one goal ­­­­here, which is to help set the conditions to provide the nation professional, ready, linguists who will assist commanders with making sound operational decisions. I will work with the military units, staff and faculty to make this happen,” pledged Donehue. The change of responsibility ceremony was presided over by Col. Phillip J. Deppert, commandant of DLIFLC. “Senior enlisted leaders are important because we command together, drive positive change together and lead together,” said Deppert, who himself is slated to change command on June 12. Several of Ramsey’s achievements during his two-year tenure included the improvement of Non-Commissioned Officer development, the augmentation of number of Military Language Instructors in the schools, and efforts toward allowing service members to choose the foreign language they want to study. DLIFLC provides resident instruction in 17 languages at the Presidio of Monterey, California, to nearly 2,500 students...
First time college credit for military foreign language exam

First time college credit for military foreign language exam

By Natela Cutter DLIFLC Public Affairs Monterey, California – For the first time, the California State University system will accept the recommendations of the American Council on Education to provide credit for the results earned on the Defense Language Proficiency Test and Oral Proficiency Interview, according to a memo issued by the California State University Office of the Chancellor. “This is really big news,” said DLIFLC Provost Dr. Robert Savukinas. “It means that service members who take the DLPT and OPI, and score, for example, a 2+ in Listening, a 2+ in Reading, and a 2 in Speaking will be able to get up to 17 credits in the upper and lower division for the language they tested,” he explained, referring to the government foreign language proficiency scoring system, the Interagency Language Roundtable. For example, students pursuing a four-year degree with a foreign language major at a California State University might be expected to complete over 40 upper and lower division credits in that major. The California State University system currently numbers 23 university campuses throughout the state. Nearly half a million students attend one of these colleges in California. “The difference now is that a clear, system-wide pathway within the CSU system now exists for military service members to receive credit for their foreign language studies here in Monterey,” explained Savukinas. DLIFLC, regarded as the Department of Defense’s premier language provider, is attended by all four branches of the military and on occasion, the Coast Guard. The Institute does not provide open enrollment to the public. “Those in the military service are eligible to take the DLPT, even...
Big crowds for Language Day

Big crowds for Language Day

By Natela Cutter DLIFLC Public Affairs Monterey, California – The Defense Language Institute Foreign Language Center held its 66th annual Language Day open house Friday May 11, bringing together nearly 6,000 students, educators and visitors from all over California and more than a dozen other states.   The tradition of celebrating Language Day began in the early 1950s, when the Institute was known as the Army Language School. Over the past ten years the event has grown exponentially, with more visitors, performances and interest shown by high schools and the foreign language teachers as well as members of the local community. “This is my 4th year coming to Language Day,” said Kristen Pacheco from Cambria High School. “It has been amazing and the best thing is the food,” she emphasized. This year, more than 50 different vendors were present at the event, with an increase of international cuisine participants to nearly 30. For visitors from the surrounding communities, Language Day serves as a unique opportunity to come back to the Presidio of Monterey and see changes that have taken place over time. “I haven’t been here since 9/11,” said Jim Gilman, sitting and chatting with a young Soldier studying Korean. “We used to come here all the time, especially for the 4th of July to watch the fireworks over the bay. This is a great chance to come see the Presidio,” he said. DLIFLC leadership took the opportunity to present faculty, students and staff members with the Army Superior Unit Award, given for the period of Jan. 1, 2009 to Dec. 31, 2009, and from Jan. 1, 2015, to...
New CAC command sergeant major’s first visit to DLIFLC

New CAC command sergeant major’s first visit to DLIFLC

By Patrick Bray DLIFLC Public Affairs   MONTEREY, Calif. – Command Sgt. Maj. Eric C. Dostie, the incoming command sergeant major of the U.S. Army Combined Arms Center at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, made his first visit to the Defense Language Institute Foreign Language Center and Presidio of Monterey May 3-4. Dostie said during his familiarization tour of the institute that he is very impressed with DLIFLC’s teachers and Military Language Instructors as he observed firsthand how DLIFLC trains military linguists during a visit to an Arabic and Korean classroom. During a visit to the institute’s Technology Integration directorate, Dostie was also able to see the many online tools developed for students to access in and out of the classroom and some of the language training products produced by DLIFLC that are available for pre-deployment training, deployment use or refresher training. Dostie also attended DLIFLC’s National Day of Prayer luncheon May 3 and spoke with senior noncommissioned officers of the 229th Military Intelligence Battalion May 4. He noted the extreme professionalism of the 229th MI’s NCO corps. The U.S. Army Combined Arms Center, organized under the U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command, is the Army’s lead organization for doctrine, training, education, leader development and lessons learned. As part of that, DLIFLC provides resident instruction in 17 languages at the Presidio of Monterey, California, with the capacity to instruct another 65 languages in Washington, D.C. The Institute has graduated more than 220,000 linguists since 1941. In addition, multiple language training detachments exists at sites in the U.S., Europe, Hawaii and Korea, spanning all the U.S. geographic combatant commands in support of...
DLIFLC students win again in Chinese speech contest

DLIFLC students win again in Chinese speech contest

By Patrick Bray DLIFLC Public Affairs   SAN FRANCISCO – Chinese language students at the Defense Language Institute Foreign Language Center participated in the 43nd Annual Mandarin Speech contest in San Francisco April 28, with 38 DLIFLC students winning awards. “Our students had an excellent performance at the speech contest,” said Dr. Liwei Gao, assistant dean of DLIFLC’s Asian School I. “This is among the best results that we have ever achieved in recent years.” Of the 38 awards, seven won first place awards; five won second place; six won third place and 20 received honorable mention in the contest organized by the Chinese Language Teachers Association of California with the purpose of fostering good language skills in Mandarin. About 400 registered contestants from schools and universities in the Northern California area participated in this contest, in which the DLIFLC students competed with students from U.C. Berkeley, U.C. Davis, U.C. Irvine, the University of San Francisco, San Francisco State University, and many others. During the day-long competition, the largest of its kind outside of China, students deliver a three to five-minute speech which they wrote, memorized, and delivered on their own, on any topic the student chose appropriate to his or her level of training. Following the speech portion and prior to the awards, Chinese language students perform songs, dances or poetry relevant to the history and culture of China. Established in 1962, CLTAC, is a nonpolitical, nonprofit educational and professional organization that seeks to promote the study, teaching and research of the Chinese language and culture and provides a platform for Chinese instructors to share and exchange teaching...
Learning Chinese calligraphy benefits language study

Learning Chinese calligraphy benefits language study

By Patrick Bray DLIFLC Public Affairs   MONTEREY, Calif. – Students at the Defense Language Institute Foreign Language Center who are studying Chinese can also practice calligraphy taught by Dr. Li-Yuan “Joan” Liao, an instructor at the Institute with a strong background in the art. “The regular students who come to my class every Thursday are eager to write with the brush and ink and they feel like the 45-minute class flies by too fast,” said Liao. “I really appreciate our schoolhouse in providing this opportunity for our students to explore the core of Chinese culture.” Part of the mission of DLIFLC is to provide the highest quality culturally based foreign language training with the teaching of culture as an integral part of foreign language instruction. So, in January 2018, Liao received support from Chao Xie, chairperson of Chinese Department B, to lead and teach Chinese calligraphy as an extracurricular activity. “Based on my observation and the feedback I collected from both learners and their instructors, all the students from Dr. Liao’s Chinese calligraphy club have better academic performance in their own class,” said Xie. “They are getting more motivated to learn Chinese language and they have a deeper understanding of Chinese culture as well.” As one of the oldest written scripts in the world, Chinese characters remain in use today with calligraphy still being widely taught and practiced. Chinese characters are taken from nature, with the character of the sun being a picture of the sun and the moon a picture of the moon, for example. The emphasis is on fitting in with nature. Liao started the class...
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