Global Language Project

Global Language Project

The Global Language Project (GLP) supports K-16 world language teachers to strengthen their practice and thus deepen their impact on their students.

The GLP Director writes, 

We have been fortunate to partner with the MEI at Columbia again this year through two of our key teacher training programs: our New York Arabic Teachers’ Council (NYATC) and our summer STARTALK program.

NYATC has served 51 teachers of Arabic through the fall, winter, and fall workshops at MEI that centered on the theme of “Beyond the Classroom Walls” and explored various ways of connecting K-16 Arabic students with the outside world. We also launched a leadership cohort of Arabic teachers at the winter workshop, who are working to be leaders in their schools and the language teaching community in general. 

In July 2016, GLP held their second STARTALK summer program at MEI for teachers of critical needs languages that included 24 teachers of Arabic, Korean, and Mandarin.


Summer Outreach

At MEI we are committed to offering K- 14 teachers robust and useful professional development opportunities on teaching about the Middle East in a nuanced and well-informed manner. 

Reconfiguring Representations of the Middle East and South Asia
The MEI partnered with Teacher’s College at Columbia University to create a workshop for K-12 public school teachers on “Rethinking Representations of the Middle East and South Asia.” Held at Teachers College, the workshop included a diverse group of panelists: 

Ameena Ghaffar-Kucher, Ed.D, Senior Lecturer; Literacy, Culture and International Education Division at the University of Pennsylvania

Maria Hantzopoulos, Ed.D, Associate Professor of Education at Vassar College

Roozbeh Shirazi, Ph.D, Assistant Professor, Program in Comparative and International Development Education at the University of Minnesota

Sa'ed Atshan, Ph.D, Assistant Professor of Peace and Conflict Studies at Swarthmore College 

Debbie Almontaser, PhD, President Board of Directors and CEO of Bridging Cultures Group and the founding and former principal of the Khalil Gibran International Academy. 

The Discourse of the Veil
Assistant Professor Nadia Geousous from Colorado College, PhD in Anthropology and graduate of Columbia University gave a full-day teacher’s workshop on Islam and the veil in June 2017 at Columbia. 

Citizenship and Nationality in Israel/Palestine
MEI hosted a teacher’s workshop at Columbia Law School on citizenship and nationality in Israel/Palestine chaired by Columbia law professor Katherine Franke. 

LaGuardia Community College Partnership

We are pleased to announce our ongoing partnership with LaGuardia Community College, a City University of New York (CUNY) school in Queens, New York. 

Guest Lecture Program & Speaker’s Bureau
As part of the partnership, MEI placed PhD students from Columbia as guest lecturers at LaGuardia. Andrew McLaren, PhD candidate in the Department of Religion, lectured on early Islam in Professor Robin Kietlinski's course on World History in May 2017.  Another PhD candidate from the Religion department, Verena Hanna Meyer lectured on the spread of Islam in the Java region in June 2017. Additionally, MEI established the “speaker’s bureau” of Columbia PhD candidates who offer a variety of guests lectures on the Middle East at community colleges and local schools. 

Amazigh/Berber Film Festival
We assisted LaGuardia professor, Habiba Boumlik with the promotion and advertising of an Amazigh/Berber film festival in May 2017. Next year, we plan to officially co-sponsor the festival. 

Faculty Seminar
In April 2017 MEI’s Outreach Coordinator, Dahlia El Zein, participated in a faculty seminar with LaGuardia faculty on teaching about Israel/Palestine. Dahlia also teaches an annual summer course on the Middle East at Princeton University. Additionally, Dahlia took part in a Professional Development series organized by Professors Boumlik and Kietlinski at LaGuardia. The seminar was a success and Dahlia will return next year to give a similar seminar.