News Releases

UWI's Centre for Language Learning Marks 25 Years of Excellence: Grand Finale

For Release Upon Receipt - November 20, 2023

St. Augustine

ST. AUGUSTINE, Trinidad and Tobago – 20 November 2023 –The University of the West Indies (The UWI) Centre for Language Learning (CLL) is proud to announce the culmination of its 25th Anniversary celebrations. In observance of this occasion, CLL will be hosting a video launch and panel discussion, on Friday 24 November 2023 at 6:00 pm at the Centre for Language Learning Auditorium to draw attention to the remarkable journey and contributions made in the realm of language learning. This event will be live-streamed on the Centre’s Facebook page. 

The event will feature the viewing of the 25th-anniversary commemorative video, which showcases the achievements and transformative influence of CLL on language learners, educators, and the broader community. As the first university language centre in the Caribbean region, the CLL teaches a diverse range of non-specialist foreign languages and has amassed an outstanding track record of success. 

Subsequent to the video launch, CLL has arranged a captivating panel discussion that will include esteemed individuals, such as Ambassador Yutaka Matsubara from the Embassy of Japan in Trinidad and Tobago, Ambassador Álvaro Sánchez Cordero from the Embassy of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela in Trinidad and Tobago, Prof. Elizabeth Walcott-Hackshaw Dean, Faculty of Humanities and Education, and Hon. Prof. Lancelot Cowie, Retired Senior Lecturer in Spanish. The panel will delve into thought-provoking subjects revolving around the current landscape of language education and the future of language learning. 

This video launch and panel come on the heels of a series of captivating events and initiatives orchestrated by the CLL throughout the year. One of the highlights was the live-streamed book launch by the Founding Director, Dr Sylvia Moodie-Kulalsingh, on January 27, 2023. This event paid tribute to Dr Moodie-Kulalsingh's research and publications, which centered on a trilogy of books on Trinidad Hispanic Culture, namely Parang Cancionero, The Cocoa Panyols of Trinidad, and Maljo, Bush Teas and Secret Prayers

Furthermore, the Languages for Life 2023 Competition was hosted at the CLL in January, targeting secondary school students from forms 4 through 6. The theme of the competition was "Foreign Languages: A Gateway to the World," and students were encouraged to explore the personal, academic, and professional opportunities that learning a foreign language can offer. The competition closed on February 27, 2023, and students were invited to submit essays, spoken word pieces, short films, or posters expressing their ideas. 

From February 27 to March 1, 2023, a collaborative outreach initiative was organized by the CLL, the Department of Modern Languages and Linguistics (DMLL), and the Center for Education Programmes (Language and Literature Department) at UTT. The primary objective of this Translanguaging programme was to enhance foreign language instructors' comprehension of the significance of both the mother tongue and second/foreign languages within the classroom setting. In addition, it aimed to disseminate information to stakeholders regarding The UWI's recently implemented Foreign Language Policy, which revolved around the overarching theme of "Every Teacher is a Language Teacher." 

To conclude the cultural activities of the semester, the CLL hosted the triennial Open House event on March 24 and 25, welcoming The UWI community, members of the public, and secondary school students. This event, themed "Explore the World with the CLL," served as a platform to showcase the diverse range of language and cultural offerings available at the center. 

The CLL expresses its gratitude to its dedicated staff, students, and the wider community for their unwavering support throughout the past 25 years. With great anticipation, the CLL eagerly looks forward to an exciting future of promoting language acquisition, fostering cultural understanding, and encouraging global engagement.


About The University of the West Indies 

The UWI has been and continues to be a pivotal force in every aspect of Caribbean development; residing at the centre of all efforts to improve the well-being of people across the region for the past 75 years. 

From a university college of London in Jamaica with 33 medical students in 1948, The UWI is today an internationally respected, global university with near 50,000 students and five campuses: Mona in Jamaica, St. Augustine in Trinidad and Tobago, Cave Hill in Barbados, Five Islands in Antigua and Barbuda and its Open Campus, and global centres in partnership with universities in North America, Latin America, Asia, Africa and Europe

The UWI offers over 800 certificate, diploma, undergraduate and postgraduate degree options in Culture, Creative and Performing Arts, Food and Agriculture, Engineering, Humanities and Education, Law, Medical Sciences, Science and Technology, Social Sciences, and Sport. As the Caribbean’s leading university, it possesses the largest pool of Caribbean intellect and expertise committed to confronting the critical issues of our region and wider world. 

The UWI has been consistently ranked among the top universities globally by the most reputable ranking agency, Times Higher Education (THE). The UWI is the only Caribbean-based university to make the prestigious lists since its debut in the rankings in 2018. In addition to its leading position in the Caribbean in the World University Rankings, it is also in the top 25 for Latin America and the Caribbean and the top 100 global Golden Age universities (between 50 and 80 years old).  The UWI is also featured among the leading universities on THE’s Impact Rankings for its response to the world’s biggest concerns, outlined in the 17 United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), including Good Health and Wellbeing; Gender Equality and Climate Action. 

2023 marks The UWI’s 75th anniversary. The Diamond jubilee milestone themed “UWI at 75. Rooted. Ready. Rising.” features initiatives purposely designed and aligned to reflect on the past, confront the present, and articulate plans for the future of the regional University. 

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