Languages@Muhlenberg.edu
Newsletter 2004
Dr. Kipa's Introduction
 
   
Dear Friends,
     Recent studies on the future of languages indicate that the status of English as a global language will eventually peak and suggest that the vision of English as the lingua franca of the world is no longer realistic. To be sure, English is well established and will continue to dominate scientific fields: 90% of their journals are printed in English today. But, population growth has been greater among speakers of languages other than English and is expected to stay the course, thus ultimately creating a “new linguistic order” in which monolingual speakers may find it difficult to fully participate. Against such a background, it is heartening to realize that more U.S. college students are studying foreign languages than ever before. They seem to realize the importance of bi- or multi-lingualism as we become a global society. Despite the encouraging numbers, 1.4 million college students studying foreign languages (the highest number recorded since the Modern Language Association has compiled statistics), it is necessary to point out that that represents only 8.7% of all students enrolled in higher education. I am pleased to note that Muhlenberg College students are among the 8.7% and thus should be better prepared to lead a more enlightened and rewarding life in the 21st Century. I hope you too will carpe diem and make good use of the opportunity and challenge the study and acquisition of foreign language skills affords. You will be well served in the years ahead. Our newsletter attempts to give you a glimpse of the benefits some of our students and faculty are or have been reaping. Enjoy!

Dr. Albert Kipa
Professor Laureate & Head