By Patrick Bray
DLIFLC Public Affairs
MONTEREY, Calif. – The Defense Language Institute Foreign Language Center welcomed Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Readiness, Daniel P. Feehan, to the institute at the Presidio of Monterey, California, June 25.
“The work that’s done here 100 percent saved the lives of my Soldiers, saved my life, and will continue to do so,” said Feehan, a U.S. Army Iraq veteran, with firsthand knowledge of the value of military linguists and acknowledges the vital role they play in the field.
Within his scope of duties, Feehan is responsible for policy and oversight of joint training, education, training innovation and capability modernization, and advanced distributed learning technologies for the Federal Government and the Defense Language and National Security Education Office.
During his visit senior DLIFLC leadership briefed Feehan on the institute’s goals to reach higher proficiency levels, faculty compensation, and distance learning capabilities, including online learning materials offered to not only the military services but also the public.
“I think he was pretty surprised to see the variety of online learning materials we offer and that most of the products are available online and are accessible and free to the public as well,” said Branka Sarac, director of Technology Integration at the DLIFLC Directorate of Continuing Education.
During the day, Feehan visited classrooms, spoke with instructors and students of Arabic Levantine, and toured the Directorate of Continuing Education, as well as the Isolation Immersion facility for local immersion exercises.
“My take-away from here today is that you are incredibly unique,” Feehan told senior DLIFLC staff during his final meeting of the day. “The 2+ effort (increasing proficiency) is a huge piece and I want to set you up for success.”
Feehan emphasized that his newly gained knowledge about DLIFLC training capabilities of the services is essential in a globalized world, and stated that students graduating from the institute are in effect diplomats who promote and protect U.S. values and interests wherever they go.
“It is easy to take for granted that the world is globalized, but there are some places where globalization is not the norm.” said Feehan, explaining why cross-cultural competency is important, a skill that DLIFLC students graduate with.
DLIFLC is regarded as one of the finest schools for foreign language instruction in the world. The Institute provides resident instruction in 23 languages to approximately 3,500 military service members, five days a week, seven hours per day, with two to three hours of homework each night. Generally, students spend between 26 and 64 weeks at the Presidio, depending on the difficulty of the language.
Posted Date: 29 June 2015