Monday, July 30, 2007

Middlebury Takes Languages to High School

As far as MiddBlog is concerned, we've never heard of anything called the "Middlebury-Monterey Language Academy (MMLA)." Have you? Apparently, job postings strewn across the internet show that Middlebury will soon announce a language immersion summer program for "middle and high school students." Set to take place June 28-July 26th 2008, the program will combine "the fun of summer camp with the opportunity to study with skilled faculty and staff, so that students are immersed in the Arabic, Mandarin Chinese, French or Spanish language." The program will launch at three sites (still unknown to MiddBlog) across the country with headquarters in Norwich, VT. The director for the "Pre-College Language Program" is Dr. David Toomey.

This is yet another big move by Middlebury College and will strengthen its reputation, this time in languages. Pre-college programs are incredibly lucrative for several reasons: 1) it introduces (I would say hooks) prospective undergrads to the college, 2) it spreads the brand-name of the college, and 3) it allows admissions to get a good look at who will be applying to be an undergrad. MMLA will put Middlebury in direct competition with language programs across the country, including Concordia Language Villages, which also do immersion learning. This puts Middlebury into play, where Brown, Harvard, Yale, etc. all already have established summer programs that "lure" students in. A typical month of residential language immersion at Concordia costs between $3,000-3,600.

Parting Thoughts: strong, strategic move. Just hope Midd doesn't charge an arm and a leg to attend...

Thoughts? Hit the comments.

[thanks to an avid MiddBlog reader for the tip on this story!]
[got a tip for MiddBlog? middblog at gmail dot com]

EDIT: In an "administrative update," The Ronald (MiddBlog will, from here on out, refer to Ron Liebowitz as "The Ronald") slipped in the first official mention of the MMLA. He writes: "Dean of Language Schools and Schools Abroad Michael Geisler will add to his current duties...the Middlebury-Monterey Language Academy (MMLA), a language program for pre-college students that is scheduled to begin next summer." What a casual mention...

2 comments:

Amanda L '011 said...

man, if they had had this when I was in high school, I TOTALLY would've done it! i'm jealous!

gabrielle said...

that's pretty cool. i'm an incoming freshman who did french immersion at concordia for a few years.

on the books...