Foreign Language Day set to introduce five key languages to high school students on January 21

Written by Madelyn Neal, CAS communications intern

Students in K10117 Language Lab

Miami's Department of German, Russian, Asian and Middle Eastern Languages and Culture (GRAMELAC) will host Foreign Language Day on Tuesday, January 21, 2020 in Irvin Hall, from 8 am to 2 pm. This event is open to invited high school students who are seeking an introduction to the featured languages of Japanese, Chinese, Arabic, Latin, and Russian.

"These languages are understudied and a little less well-known," said senior lecturer Lihong (Helen) Wang. "We want students to get a taste of these languages to open their minds to see more places and cultures."

Miami's first Foreign Language Day offers a way for students to learn introductory phrases in these languages, as well as to have cultural experiences. The goal of these experiences will be to broaden potential Redhawks' minds, as well as to show that these languages, though very different from English, do not have to be intimidating.

"Once [they] take the first step, the rest will not be near as scary. Learning new languages is a chance to broaden your mind and will open many opportunities for you," Wang said.

The purpose of Foreign Language Day is to promote open-mindedness and increase appreciation for some undervalued languages. Students will discover the beauty of these languages and have a sneak peak at the rich and vibrant cultures that they could study full time as students at Miami University.

Wang teaches Chinese from level 100 to level 300. She has been teaching at Miami since 2003, and is currently teaching a business Chinese course. Her vast experiences have taught her first hand that learning more than one language will increase opportunities in all parts of life.

"You can understand how other human beings think and behave, which will create more harmony and understanding between other cultures and other peoples," Wang said.

The event is free to invited high school students. For more information, please contact Ms. Wang (