Editor’s note: This sponsored article is was contributed by the Center for Urban Language Teaching and Research at Georgia State University
After three years of hosting virtual events, Georgia State University’s Center for Urban Language Teaching and Research (CULTR) is excited to welcome representatives from industry, nonprofits, as well as government and professional organizations, at its 9th Annual World Languages Day on Thursday, Oct. 19.
A global career expo with a focus on the value of language skills, cultural experiences, and DEI (Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion), World Languages Day directly connects employers with over 1,000 high school and college students and showcases diverse speaker panels on topics relevant to learners in the global economy.
Past exhibitors for this event have included Mercedes-Benz, UPS, FBI, CIA, Truist, the U.S. Department of State, Peace Corps and many more.
“As the only federally funded Title VI Language Resource Center in the Southeastern United States, we are dedicated to the belief that students with language ability and cultural competence make our economy stronger, our nation safer, and our communities more welcoming,” says Dr. Hakyoon Lee, Associate Professor of Korean and Director of CULTR. “We firmly advocate that world language proficiency enhances global communication, cultural understanding fosters empathy, and diversity fuels innovation. I couldn’t agree more and look forward to furthering this mission.”
Since 2014, CULTR has created a unique identity around fostering the Languages For All! initiative, started a decade ago by the University of Maryland Center for Advanced Study of Language.
Over the years, it has created several initiatives that support language proficiency, cultural competence, and professional development initiatives for teachers across urban and underrepresented communities. Led by its core values of access, advocacy, outreach and research, CULTR has gained a national reputation for innovative language learning opportunities as part of a 21st-century global education.
Dr. Lee, the director, is enthusiastic about the current funding cycle which has provided CULTR with a distinctive opportunity to redirect its efforts toward less commonly taught but often critical languages such as Arabic, Chinese, Japanese and Korean.
Since the inception of World Languages Day, representatives from diplomatic, governmental, and nonprofit organizations have been united in the recognition that employees from diverse backgrounds with language and cultural expertise are poised to advance an organization’s mission.
Similarly, the Atlanta Institute for Diplomatic Leadership, a 2023 exhibitor, recognizes that “the study of languages is critical to promoting unity and building peace. Peace can only be achieved by valuing the contributions of every culture and by bringing everyone to the table, regardless of race, religion, or socioeconomic background,” according to AIDL founding director Bob McCormick.
CULTR is inviting for-profit and nonprofit businesses, as well as government agencies, to become World Languages Day exhibitors and join a growing network of global organizations focused on 21st-century global skills, world language education and workforce readiness. Those unable to attend in person are encouraged to help sponsor the event.
Exhibiting organizations enjoy the opportunity to introduce their brand and mission to all student and non-student attendees, promote current career prospects and new markets, while developing personal and direct relationships with high-potential future members of their workforce who may be looking for internships and/or entry level positions upon graduation.
World Languages Day 2023 will take place on Thursday, Oct. 19, at the Student Center East Ballroom on the GSU campus in Downtown Atlanta. Parking and lunch will be provided to participating organizations.
Organizations interested in participating in World Languages Day are encouraged to access further information via the following links: