News & Events
Jason Herbeck recently published a chapter in a pedagogical anthology titled Entre-Textes: Dialogues littéraires et culturels. Published by Routledge, Entre-Textes introduces advanced students of French to the richness of the Francophone world through literature from the Middle Ages to the 21st century.
The course anthology is divided into 14 modules, each of which pairs a classical text with a modern one. Students are guided to read works from different periods of time and cultural origin and consider how these echo, complement or question each other. Through comparing and contrasting the texts, students are encouraged to develop a new approach to reading literature while simultaneously reinforcing linguistic and cultural competencies.
The chapter written by Herbeck, co-authored with Margaret Gray from Indiana University, examines the river as a metaphor for identity in canonical French writer Marcel Proust’s 1913 Du Côté de chez Swann (Swann’s Way, the first volume of In Search of Lost Time) and Guadeloupean Édouard Glissant’s 1958 novel, “La Lézarde” (The Ripening).
Heike Henderson Presents at the American Comparative Literature Association Convention (ACLA) in the Netherlands
German professor Heike Henderson presented a paper at the American Comparative Literature Association (ACLA) convention held July 6-9 in Utrecht in the Netherlands.
The title of Henderson’s presentation was “The World and/in the City: Jakob Arjouni’s Frankfurt.” It was part of the Worlding Crime Fiction Seminar, which met over three days and discussed presentations by scholars from Australia, China, Laos, Ireland, England, Denmark, Sweden, Holland, Germany and the United States.
In June, Fatima Cornwall was invited by the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL) to be part of a 12-person expert panel for a standard-setting project in Arlington, Virginia.
This work group, comprised of linguists, professors, translators and U.S. Air Force officers, was tasked with creating scoring protocol for a test of Portuguese-European listening proficiency. The test is being developed by the Defense Language Institute on behalf of the U.S. government.
Boise State University’s Casita Nepantla has received a $150,000 matching grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) to document the art and cultural expression of Latinos in rural and urban communities throughout Idaho.
The project, which is part of NEH’s Creating Humanities Communities, is ONE OF ONLY 245 HUMANITIES PROJECTS FUNDED ACROSS THE NATION.
“I am pleased and feel honored that we have received this NEH grant. It will provide a great opportunity for this institution to demonstrate its commitment to the humanities and to engaging in cultural research about Latinos in Idaho,” said Alicia Garza, an associate professor of Spanish at Boise State and director of Casita Nepantla: A Latino Space at Boise State University.
The project, titled “Latino Neighborhoods and Rasquache Private and Public Expressions of Cultural Identity,” begins with mapping the neighborhoods in southern Idaho and southeastern Oregon with significant Latino populations. Through oral histories and still photographs, Casita Nepantla plans on preserving the ephemeral material culture and lived experience of the region’s most rapidly growing demographic.
“We aim to document, interpret and celebrate the homemade, rasquache cultural expressions of the region’s residents,” Garza said. (To be rasquache is to posit a bawdy, spunky consciousness, to seek to subvert and turn ruling paradigms upside down, as explained by renowned Chicano scholar Tomás Ybarra-Frausto.)
Although the Latino population in Idaho is growing, Garza explained that there is a dearth of scholarly research that explores the important contributions Latino creatives are making to Idaho’s contemporary cultural scene. This critical absence inhibits greater community cohesion between the general public and the fastest growing demographic in the American west.
Casita Nepantla is partnering with the university’s Division of Research and Economic Development, College of Arts and Sciences, University Advancement, professor Leslie Durham from theatre arts, associate professor Dora Ramirez from English, and photographer Allison Corona, as well as community partners including the Idaho State Historical Museum, the Cabin, the Boise City Department of Arts and History, and the College of Western Idaho for this project.
Once completed, Casita Nepantla will evaluate the project’s scholarly, community and institutional impacts using qualitative data gathered from its audiences, partner organizations, and media coverage as well as quantitative data on website access, fundraising and participation.
Kelly Arispe Presents at 34th annual Convention for Computer Assisted Language Instruction Consortium in Flagstaff, Arizona
Kelly Arispe recently presented a paper with co-author Jack Burston of Cyprus University of Technology at the 34th annual Convention for Computer Assisted Language Instruction Consortium in Flagstaff, Arizona.
The presentation, “Bridging the Gap from Intermediate to Advanced Level Foreign Language Competency in American Colleges and Universities: The Contribution of CALL,” stems from their meta-analysis of studies in computer assisted language learning and exposes the fact that almost all of the research has been geared towards beginner learners.
Their presentation focused on the scarce 17 studies that did include intermediate learners and found that most fell short because of oversights stemming from foreign language pedagogy. As a result, they suggested a pedagogical framework that integrates proficiency-based assessments, learner autonomy and instructional technology to appropriately scaffold intermediate learners towards improved linguistic competence. Specifically, Arispe reported on the results from the 241 oral proficiency interviews that have been conducted in the Spanish program over the last four years as compelling evidence that language learners at the 300-level are in dire need of augmented opportunities for language practice outside of the classroom.
Instructional technology, if implemented appropriately, is one way to leverage augmented language practice.
The annual Treasure Valley High School Japanese Speech Contest was held on April 20 at Centennial High School in Meridian. The event, which was organized by Tetsuya Ehara and sponsored by Boise State’s Japan Club and the Consular Office of Japan in Portland, included Centennial and other area high school students.
The following organizations donated gifts in support of the event:
- Consular office of Japan in Portland
- BSU Football Office
- BSU Marketing in Athletic Department
- BSU Center for School Improvement & Policy Studies
- BSU Department of World Languages
- BSU Japan Club
- Hosei University Football Team in Tokyo, Japan
The First Korean Language Speaking Contest was held at the 14th Annual Undergraduate Research Conference on April 17th in the Student Union Building. Eleven Korean 102 students participated in the contest and spoke of any topic related to themselves for two minutes entirely in Korean. Dr. Jae Ryu, the President of Idaho Korean Association and Eunyoung Choi, the Director of Sejong Korea Language School judged students speech and their communication skills. Three winners, Cerose Cedoux, Carley Marie Baeta, and Jenni Irene Domanowski, were awarded. You can read the full project abstract at Scholarworks.
Degree: Bachelor of science in health sciences, bachelor of arts in Spanish and a minor in psychology
Honored Faculty: Scott Conger, assistant professor, Department of Kinesiology
Coming to Boise State from Anchorage, Alaska, Wicks competed as a member of the Boise State swimming and diving team for four years and was a team captain for her final season. During three of those years, she represented Boise State at the NCAA championship meet. Wicks received All-Mountain West honors for each semester she participated, is a three-time Mountain West Scholar-Athlete and was named the 2016 Mountain West Swimmer of the Year. In addition, she is a three-time Scholastic All-American and was named to the 2016 Academic All-American Third Team. She finished her swimming career at the 2016 Olympic Trials. Wicks now works with the Boise State swimming team as a volunteer.
Wicks spent the fall 2016 semester studying in Costa Rica where she advanced her fluency in Spanish. The time spent living in Costa Rica has influenced her plans for the future. Wicks is currently in a program off-campus to become a certified Spanish medical interpreter so she can work with Spanish-speaking people.
Degree: Bachelor of science in political science and minors in nonprofit management and American Sign Language
Honored Faculty: Nicole Bird, head coach of women’s golf
An international student from France, Pelloille came to Boise State after receiving a four-year scholarship to play on the golf team. An All-American athlete, she currently serves as part of the leadership team for the Student Athlete Association Committee (SAAC). As part of SAAC, she led the community event committee with the goal of engaging fellow athletes in community service. She also co-led the creation of a personal development program for children in Title I schools.
Pelloille participated in the Boise State Student Involvement and Leadership Center’s Partnership Jamaica, serving on a team of students who built and reconstructed parts of schools in Jamaica. She has also volunteered with Big Brothers, Big Sisters and has interned at Make-A-Wish Idaho. From that experience, she created the “Wish Makers on Campus” club to increase awareness about Make-A-Wish Idaho on campus by organizing fundraising events. She currently serves as president.
Pelloille is fluent in three languages: English, French and American Sign Language with intermediate fluency in Spanish.
Degree: Bachelor of science in materials science and engineering with a certificate in elementary Korean
Honored Faculty: Harold Ackler, clinical associate professor, Micron School of Materials Science and Engineering
Domanowski, from Arlington, Washington, came to Boise State to compete on the swimming and diving team. She has served as national corresponding secretary for the Tau Beta Pi Engineering Honor Society, is president of the Boise State chapter and was recently recognized by the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA) and Aviation Week as part of the 20 Twenties, an award that honors 20 STEM students across the globe as the top leaders in the aerospace industry.
Domanowski began a relationship with NASA in 2014, holding internships at the NASA Marshall Space Flight Center in the Failure Analysis and Metallurgy Branch and the NASA Glenn Research Center in the Materials and Structures Division. The next year she became a Pathways Intern at the NASA Goddard Space Flight Center in the Materials Engineering Branch. She will continue to work at NASA in a full-time position post-graduation.
During the spring 2017 semester, students from Concordia Law University and Boise State University collaborated with local immigration attorneys to represent individuals in the Boise immigration court who seek asylum, protection under the convention against torture, and special immigration juvenile status as part of PROJECT LAURA. Students from Boise State University assisted with bilingual interpretation during attorney-client visits, as well as with document translation.
Project LAURA is Boise’s legal community’s response to the Latin American refugee crisis. Since 2014, the number of Latin American families fleeing violence in the U.S. has significantly increased, and as of 2016, unrepresented refugees facing deportation total approximately two-thirds of all Boise’s non-detained removal cases. Until Project LAURA, no pro bono program existed in Boise to provide legal representation of these individuals.
Nicole Derden, immigration attorney and founder of Project LAURA, was the instructor of record for the Immigration Clinic at Concordia Law School, and Fatima Cornwall, federal certified court interpreter, was the instructor of record for the Department of World Languages with Boise State.
During the semester, all students were encouraged to observe hearings at the immigration court in Boise. Bilingual students were able to listen to the official interpretation provided by certified court interpreter Mark Conta, who later debriefed them on language and procedure questions.
The culminating project for all students was a mock immigration merits hearing at Concordia, where law students played the role of defense attorneys, and language students provided simultaneous and consecutive interpretation services. Several local attorneys who also taught the immigration clinic played different roles: Angela Richards played the role of judge and Angela Levesque played the role of therapist.
Many Idaho certified court interpreters also contributed to the success of the mock hearing. Diana Arbiser, federal court certified interpreter, was in charge of providing formative assessment during the mock hearing; Sandra Barrios, statewide language access manager for the Idaho Supreme Court, played the role of the monolingual Spanish-speaking respondent; and Vanesa Bell, language access coordinator for the fourth judicial district, was also in attendance.