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New language partnership will enrich learning

The Intensive American Language Center (IALC) on the Pullman campus moved its classrooms and staff to Daggy Hall this summer after the decommissioning of Kruegel Hall, which previously housed the center. 

The IALC is where international students learn and polish their English and knowledge of American customs through beginner, undergraduate and graduate programs. In addition to the IALC moving its staff and class spaces, the IALC’s Learning Support Center found a new home in Thompson Hall through a partnership with CAS’s School of Languages, Cultures and Race, which runs the Language Learning Resource Center (aka Language Lab). 

Having the IALC’s Learning Support Center and the Language Lab in one place will provide WSU students taking foreign language classes and international students studying English the opportunity to learn from each other at the same location.  

International Student and Scholar Services Director Dr. Kate Hellmann said, “Native speakers of different languages will be interacting with each other in the Language Lab, sharing cultures along with languages and gaining new perspectives on the world. They’ll find the Lab provides a safe and welcoming space for learning whether it be in English, French, German, Chinese or any of the multitude of languages spoken on campus.” 

Academic English and academic tutoring services previously offered by IALC’s Learning Support Center (LSC) also transferred to the Language Lab. The LSC’s virtual desktop infrastructure, which was funded by a Student Technology Fee secured by the International Students’ Council, supplements the Lab’s significant network of computers, printers, projectors, software, and other technology essential to language learning. 

“As international travel resumes for education abroad and international enrollments rebound across WSU, this partnership offers a unique opportunity to share language in person among both international students learning English and SLRC students learning languages spoken by international students,” Hellman said. 

“This partnership provides a nexus for language and cultural exchange that can benefit both groups of students,” Carmen R. Lugo-Lugo, director of the School of Languages, Cultures and Race, said.  

Across the system, WSU has approximately 1,850 international students and scholars from over 135 countries attending the university in any given year. SLCR has over 300 students majoring, minoring, or earning certificates in at least one language. 

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