More than 75 Mesa College students, faculty members, staff, and representatives from the San
Diego Community College District (SDCCD) recently turned out to celebrate the grand opening of the newly renovated Language Center at San Diego Mesa College.
“I am so pleased to celebrate with you the creation of a unique space for language learning here at Mesa College. Certainly, this center offers students everything they need to learn a language. But one of the true benefits it also offers is the opportunity to discover the culture and diversity of many lands and peoples,” said Dr. Pamela T. Luster, President. “We live in a world today that requires global awareness and a respect for citizens of all nations. Learning a language can help one do that.”
Funded by Proposition N, the newly renovated $2.3 million Language Center supports San Diego Mesa College’s robust language curriculum featuring instruction in 10 languages and three degree programs, taught by more than 50 dedicated and diverse faculty members. Situated on the second floor of the Learning Resource Center, the Language Center includes six new smart classrooms, a
language laboratory, an open computer lab, a new faculty development room, offices, tech office/storage, and a new interactive learning lounge for students.
“When you walk through the center you see the classes in session and the activity that’s taking place in the lab and you see the efforts that were made to create a learning environment that is specific and conducive to language learning,” said Leslie Shimazaki, Dean of the School of Arts and Languages. “The classrooms and furniture were carefully designed and selected to promote language learning pedagogy.”
Marcelo Masur, Associated Students Government Vice President who speaks three languages fluently and currently studies Spanish and Chinese at Mesa College stated, “…having the opportunity to learn about a new culture, whether it’s learning a language or traveling abroad, will boost our curiosity for learning and help us to become global citizens.”
Additional building modifications included Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) upgrades as well as absorptive acoustical treatments throughout the central atrium. The High Tech Center, an accessible computer lab and classroom, was relocated to the first floor and now provides easier access to students. The grand opening coincided with the college’s activities and celebrations of International Education Week (Nov. 17-21), which includes faculty presentations, student-led language exchanges, dialogues with international students, an international education fair, and an international film festival.