DLIFLC team competes in Army Ten-Miler

DLIFLC team competes in Army Ten-Miler

By Patrick Bray DLIFLC Public Affairs   MONTEREY, Calif. – The Defense Language Institute Foreign Language Center competed in the 31st Annual Army Ten-Miler in Washington, D.C., Oct. 11 for the first time in 13 years. The team formed in a short amount of time as tryouts were held two months prior to race day. Capt. Sarah Martin, DLIFLC Headquarters and Headquarters Company commander, volunteered her time to take on most of the management and training responsibilities as the team captain. “I’m very proud overall of the effort and commitment put in by everyone. A lot of planning went into this and everybody at DLIFLC has supported us,” said Martin. On race day, two runners came in under an hour. Derek Schnell finished in 56 minutes, 2 seconds and Alexander Branch finished in 59 minutes, 11 seconds. The team’s top female runner, Hannah McKenzie, finished in 1 hour, 9 minutes, 5 seconds. Since tryouts, all the runners improved their times, with Schnell cutting his time by the most at six...
Korean students celebrate Hangul Day with alphabet contest

Korean students celebrate Hangul Day with alphabet contest

By Patrick Bray DLIFLC Public Affairs   MONTEREY, Calif. – The ninth of October every year in Korea is Hangul Day, translated as Alphabet Day, and is a holiday commemorating the gift of a simplified alphabet from King Sejong the Great to his people in 1446, replacing complicated Chinese characters. “Being of foreign origin, Chinese characters are incapable of capturing uniquely Korean meanings. Therefore, many common people have no way to express their thoughts and feelings,” said the king, according to the alphabet’s historical account. More than 500 years later, the Korean alphabet withstood the test of time and is being taught all around the world, to include the Defense Language Institute Foreign Language Center at the Presidio of Monterey, California. To celebrate Hangul Day, the Korean School at the institute held the 13th Annual Korean Alphabet Day Video Contest, and the best three videos were shown at an awards ceremony Oct. 8. The contest themes “Our favorite moments from studying the Korean language” and “Studying the Korean language at DLIFLC” allowed students to showcase their Korean writing ability and cultural awareness in a fun way. For the video entries, awards were given by Col. Philip Deppert, DLIFLC commandant, Ron Nelson on behalf of the DLIFLC provost, and Marina Cobb, dean of the Korean School. Awards were also given for participation in the 24th Annual Korean Language Writing Contest for Foreign Nationals hosted by Yonsei University in Seoul, who judged the entries. U.S. Marine Corps Pfc. Samuel Vu won first place for a poem he wrote in Korean and read it aloud at the awards ceremony. “When I look...
New battery launched for foreign language aptitude

New battery launched for foreign language aptitude

By Natela Cutter, DLIFLC Public Affairs MONTEREY, Calif. – The Defense Language Institute Foreign Language Center, in cooperation with the University of Maryland Center for the Advanced Study of Language, announced Sept. 21 that a new aptitude battery for predicting the ability of an individual to learn a foreign language was released to Military Entrance Processing Stations nation-wide for feasibility testing and scoring calibration. “The new battery is called the Defense Language Aptitude Battery 2, or DLAB2, and will be administered at the recruiting stations in conjunction with the current DLAB for several months in order to collect data that will tell us how effective the new battery is in comparison to the current version,” said Gary Hughes, DLIFLC director of Training Analysis. “We introduced two new cognitive measures to the battery,” said CASL research associate Susan Campbell. “We wanted to introduce some measures that would better predict the aptitude to learn a foreign language, so we added items that would measure working memory and inductive reasoning. These two cognitive measures were not present in the old battery.” “Some of the components that were added were pre-existing,” said Scott Jackson, CASL associate research scientist. According to Jackson, CASL team members worked closely with the Defense Manpower Data Center (DMDC) and were able to isolate items from other exams that are administered, in order to pull that data into the DLAB2 battery. “So, for example, if there is good information derived from the current ASVAB (Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery) such as the personality indicator, then we would be able to use that information,” said Campbell. While the ASVAB measures...
Recruiting command commits to bringing on more linguists

Recruiting command commits to bringing on more linguists

By Patrick Bray DLIFLC Public Affairs   MONTEREY, Calif. – Maj. Gen. Jeffery Snow, commanding general of U.S. Army Recruiting Command, headquartered at Fort Knox, Kentucky, visited the Defense Language Institute Foreign Language Center at the Presidio of Monterey, California, Sept. 17. He spoke about recruiting and getting more potential Army applicants interested in becoming linguists. “It’s nice to come here and see the investment we are making in young men and women and the growing appreciation that we really need to cultivate language capability in our Army,” said Snow. “We are absolutely committed to ensuring that quality applicants are coming to the Army,” which includes linguists, he said. The institute’s assistant provost for academic support, Steve Koppany, briefed the general on DLIFLC’s goals to reach higher proficiency levels, distance learning capabilities and online learning materials to train linguists to meet the professional needs of the Army. The Army offers 150 military occupational specialties and linguists are a priority occupational skill. “As you look at the Army operating concept and the uncertainty, the pace of change and the instability in the world you realize that we’ve got to be able to operate in any culture using any language to be successful,” said Snow. Snow visited a Korean classroom to see firsthand how new recruits receive language training. Generally, students spend between 26 and 64 weeks at the Presidio, depending on the difficulty of the language. “Last time I was here I saw Pashto. I saw a Korean class today. In both cases I was impressed for a couple of reasons,” said Snow. “I think the faculty here are extraordinary....
Students take day off for resiliency

Students take day off for resiliency

By Patrick Bray DLIFLC Public Affairs   MONTEREY, Calif. – The Defense Language Institute Foreign Language Center conducted its Fall 2015 Resiliency Day in conjunction with Patriot Day and Suicide Prevention Month Sept. 11 at the Price Fitness Center field, at the Presidio of Monterey, California. Resiliency Day promotes wellness, safety, team-building, unit morale, and esprit de corps among service members, especially at DLIFLC where the stress of foreign language study can seem overwhelming. Col. Phillip Deppert, DLIFLC commandant, kicked off the day’s events, which included physical fitness competitions such as team sports and races, wellness awareness activities, a variety of food vendors, and much more. “We stop and take a knee today to remember to take care of each other,” said Deppert in his suicide awareness remarks. He continued by encouraging the troops to have fun and stay safe. “You all deserve to have this break today.” Before the activities began, Deppert and Command Sgt. Maj. Matildo Coppi, DLIFLC command sergeant major, presented awards on behalf of the West Point Society of the Monterey Peninsula and the U.S. Naval Academy Alumni Association of Monterey Bay, as well as DLIFLC leadership awards. The Naval Academy and West Point Society awards are given to any service member who demonstrates leadership, physical fitness, academic performance and volunteer service. U.S. Marine Corps Pfc. Conner Brew and Airman 1st Class Christina James received the West Point awards. U.S. Army Sgt. Paul Tamashiro received the Naval Academy...
Monterey officials tour DLIFLC and Presidio

Monterey officials tour DLIFLC and Presidio

By Patrick Bray DLIFLC Public Affairs   MONTEREY, Calif. – Retired U.S. Army Col. Dino Pick, former commandant of the Defense Language Institute Foreign Language Center and now the deputy city manager for plans and public works for the City of Monterey, visited the Presidio of Monterey, California, Sept. 10. Pick, along with three other city officials who had not visited the installation prior, got an up-close look at how the Presidio operates and the language teaching mission that takes place. The officials received a briefing from DLIFLC Chief of Staff, Steven Collins, and visited the Persian Farsi School where they were given a classroom demonstration by students in Farsi. “What you do is amazing,” said Pick as he spoke to the students in Farsi which he studied in college. While attending DLIFLC in the mid-1990s, Pick studied Arabic. The officials then observed Persian Farsi students cooking at the Weckerling Center and even got a taste of Persian food. Aside from teaching the language, instructors also teach culture, history and geography of their native lands. Col. Paul Fellinger, Presidio of Monterey garrison commander, briefed the officials on the “Monterey Model,” a model of efficiency for the Department of Defense, saving the government more than $1.5 million over the past five years by partnering with the city for services and public works. The city officials also toured the nearby Naval Postgraduate School as part of Monterey’s goal of gaining a better understanding of local military installations and their...
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