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WLC Grad Students and Faculty Present Cutting-Edge Research at the Spanish Linguistics in the Southeast Conference

Flags are displayed at a booth in the Talley Student Union during LatinX Heritage Month. Photo by Becky Kirkland.

World Languages & Cultures faculty, graduate students and alumni researchers recently presented their work at the Spanish Linguistics in the Southeast Conference, held at the College of Charleston in Charleston, SC. This conference, founded at NC State in 2011, invites researchers from across the region to share their latest studies on topics ranging from language teaching to the Spanish spoken by immigrants and their children in North Carolina. 

Faculty and students making Wolfpack sign at conference
WLC faculty, students and alumni representing the Wolfpack

Jim Michnowicz, head of the Department of World Languages and Cultures, gave the opening plenary address in which he discussed the contributions that the study of Spanish in the Southeast makes to the broader fields of linguistics and language contact. “This region serves as a living laboratory for understanding the early stages of language and dialect contact in the United States,” Michnowicz noted. “And the work being done here at NC State by both faculty and graduate students is leading the way.”

Graduate students from the M.A. in World Languages program presented alongside faculty from across the Southeast, and their talks focused on innovative aspects of Spanish linguistics and pedagogy. Carlos Domínguez, a second-year M.A. student who presented his own research on language shift in maintenance in North Carolina commented, “Presenting for the first time in a professional conference can sound stressful, but with support from the WLC graduate faculty, peers and friends, I felt confident in my work and that I could actually do it, that I had the knowledge and tools to present research I had worked on.” Besides presenting his own work, Carlos also co-presented a paper on an innovative teaching method with WLC professor Mark Darhower.

M.A. student Carlos Domínguez presents his research on Spanish language shift and maintenance in NC.

“Our students and faculty really make an important contribution to our understanding of how Spanish changes in contact with English, and why it is important to value bilingual forms of speech as markers of identity,” Michnowicz remarked. “We really are doing amazing things right here in World Languages & Cultures.”