Moving Language, Knowledge and People Across Borders
The mission of the Language Without Borders Initiative (LWBI) at LACSI is to promote and enhance the exchange of languages, bodies of knowledge, and individuals between the University of Georgia and Latin America. It also aims to foster greater academic, intellectual, and cultural collaboration among faculty and students who are pursuing language study, research, and degree programs within North American and Latin American institutions of higher learning. Broadly speaking, it seeks to move languages, ideas, and people across geographic and institutional borders.
The number of Spanish speakers in Latin America currently exceeds 232 million, and Brazil alone is home to nearly 200 million of the world’s roughly 216 million Portuguese speakers, making these two languages the second, and sixth most widely spoken world languages respectively. While the teaching of Spanish as a foreign language is well established in the US, Portuguese instruction lags far behind in American universities and public schools, despite the fact that Brazil is now the sixth largest economy in the world. It is clear, as well, that without the necessary language skills (in both contexts) economic, academic and strategic exchange between the US and its partners in Latin America will fall short of its potential.
Currently, the main component of this initiative is the nation’s only Portuguese Flagship Program. At LACSI, we are committed to building on this foundation in partnership with individuals and organizations at and beyond UGA in order to realize the goals of the initiative.
If you are interested in collaborating on the Languages Without Borders Initiative, please contact Dr. Robert Moser, coordinator of the LWBI at UGA.
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