A teaching intern from Lima, Peru, will bring a new dimension to many of the classes offered this spring by the Mercyhurst College department of foreign languages and world cultures.
Ivonne Manay will work with Spanish classes as a teaching assistant while also bringing her native language skills to bear during conversation groups required of advanced students so that they can hone their oral language skills.
The young teacher’s stay at Mercyhurst is sponsored by the Amity Institute of California, a nonprofit educational teaching exchange program founded in 1962 to give people around the world an opportunity to represent their countries by sharing their language and culture. By offering communities contact with these informal ambassadors, the Amity Program strives to encourage and enhance international understanding and friendship. Every year, more than 200 volunteers from Europe, Latin America, Asia, Africa, Russia and the West Indies help teach their native language.
Amity Scholars assist with language and cultural instruction for up to 20 hours a week, and in exchange, participating colleges provide Amity Scholars with room and board, a small spending allowance and arrange transportation to and from the United States.
At Mercyhurst College, Manay is the second intern to visit the foreign language department – Nazareth Flores worked with the department last year.
“Ivonne will serve as a native model for speaking, a vocabulary resource for our department and a cultural representative for her homeland,” said Dr. Alice Edwards, director of the foreign languages and world cultures department and associate professor of Spanish.
“We participate in the Amity Institute program to augment our language program by creating more opportunities outside of class for students to use the language and interact with native speakers,” explained Edwards. “Because Mercyhurst does not have a native Hispanic population, we feel our relationship with the Amity Institute is one way for us to offer students these authentic speaking opportunities.”
Manay will be part of the language department from February through May.