Only together can we make a difference.

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Only Together Conference 2019

Last month, Woodmont Hills Church hosted the Only Together Conference aimed at connecting Nashville’s refugee service groups to each other. It presented a great opportunity to learn more about the refugees who make Nashville their home and the services available to them, to network with other agencies and to share about TLC’s programs. Erin Keafer, Assistant Director of English Programs at TLC, highlighted our ESL to Go program, which takes the classroom to refugee communities and helps to eliminate the transportation barrier. Since many of the volunteers in attendance teach informal English to the refugees who they mentor, we wanted to remind them what it’s like to sit on the other side of the desk.

Heather Seybold teaching a German lesson to the audience.

When we talk about teaching our new neighbors English, it’s good to be reminded of how humbling the process of learning a new language as an adult can be. We thought it might be better to show rather than to tell, which also gave us an opportunity to talk about our Teaching English as a Second Language (TESL) and World Language courses. I presented a German lesson using NO English! “What?!!”, you say, “How is that possible??” Well, it’s the difference between explaining the grammar in English or teaching the target language phrases in context. Your brain is MUCH more engaged when it has to work not only to remember the phrase but to understand its meaning based on context. This is what sets our communicative approach apart from traditional teaching methods.

Many of our ESL students don’t share the same primary language in the classroom, so we must teach them in English using different methods that explain the meaning of the words rather than just presenting the vocabulary in the language they are most comfortable speaking. If you have ever experienced teaching or learning a new language using the communicative method, it sounds much easier to do than it is—both as a student and a teacher. The TESL program at TLC helps set teachers up for success using these effective teaching methods.

So let this serve as an invitation. Come learn a language with us or learn how to teach a language — we’d love to help! Only together can we make a difference.

Learn more today by visiting www.tlc.tennessee.edu or calling us at 615-741-7579.

Heather Seybold

Assistant Director, Foreign Languages

Contact

Phone: 615-741-7579 x119

Email: heather.seybold@tennessee.edu

More Than Just Night Classes – How TLC Helps Homeschool Families

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I recently had the pleasure of sitting down and talking with Connie Barrow, a nurse practitioner from White House who homeschools her two kids, Wesley (age 15) and Shannon (age 13). They have been attending our classes since January and just recently completed their third term. She sits patiently in our lobby twice a week for two hours while Wesley and Shannon take their evening world language classes and has become a dear friend of ours.

One of the reasons Connie sought us out was because of her son’s interest in learning Russian. Private video lessons with an instructor based in the Ukraine sparked an interest in attending an in-person class. With a quick search on the internet, Connie found TLC.

The combination of the private tutoring and attending our in-person classes year round is how her kids achieve the required amount of homeschool credit every year. Although year round classes are a big commitment, Connie appreciates the continuity of the language learning and says it quickly became about more than just achieving the school credit – both kids are very committed to and excited about learning their prospective languages.

Connie says that one of the perks of studying here is that her kids can be around adult learners who take their language studies seriously. Her kids don’t have to worry about other students in class goofing off or distracting them from learning.

She also really appreciates the breadth of world language options when compared to regular school systems who typically only offer a few language options. As a mother, she thought it was important that her kids have the option to choose their own language interests from a large variety of options. Having lots of choices helps them think outside the box and enjoy being different. She is very proud that her kids authentically picked their own languages to study and believes it shows them that learning to pursue personal goals and dreams is valuable. “Sometimes teenagers feel the need to conform, but they need to know that it’s okay not to conform. I definitely recommend TLC to homeschool parents. Even if it’s not for credit, it encourages independence even within their own family and gives them something that makes them unique.”

Pictured are Wesley and Shannon Barrow after class.

I was also very happy to hear that both kids absolutely love their teachers. Wesley’s Russian teacher, Tatiana Logsdon, is a native of Russia. Wesley enjoys the stories she shares from her homeland, the culture, and learning what it is really like to live there. Shannon enjoys French because it is different from what her big brother is studying, but also because her French teacher, Jennifer Pitts, is consistent and understands what it is like to be in her student’s shoes with learning a language from scratch. Also, Shannon’s aunt lives in Quebec and speaks French, so it has been exciting for her to have that connection to her extended family members in Canada.

Connie has picked up some world language skills from her kids, too! She can say some basic sentences in Russian and French, thanks to her well-studied kids. The Barrow family recently attended the 2019 International Pathfinder Camporee event in Osh Kosh, Wisconsin, where they got to meet and spend time with hundreds of different families from different countries and cultural backgrounds. The Barrow family believes that seeking out and celebrating diversity is important for their kids’ character development. “It is important to know there is a way to show kindness even if you can’t understand what the other person is saying. It is exciting to be in a multi-cultural setting. They are people from other places, but they are just like you and me. There is so much value in being bilingual.”

She also wanted to point out that it was a fairly easy process of registering her kids and getting all her questions answered. “I really like TLC’s gentle approach to helping us, whether on the phone or in person, it was important to me to ask questions. I absolutely recommend TLC to everyone.”

Our current class offerings are Arabic, Chinese, French, German, Greek, Hindi, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Portuguese, Russian and Spanish. If you are interested in getting more information or registering for classes, please visit our website at http://tlc.tennessee.edu or give us a call at 615-741-7579.

Takeaways: Knox Asian Festival

So, I was at the 6th annual Knox Asian Festival on Sunday, a beautiful celebration with so many diverse visitors.  My booth was right outside the food vendor area, and I saw some delicious-looking meals and smelled some wonderful smells throughout the day.  There were countless intricate costumes representing various Asian countries and fascinating rhythms as various artists performed behind us.

This was my first time at this festival, so I had no idea how many interactions were in store for me.  So many people are interested in learning another language, and we hope to supply that need in Knoxville.  I was so excited to announce that we are now able to offer French, Spanish, Japanese and possibly Mandarin classes beginning in October!

To be completely honest, I did have two favorite interactions during the festival.  One young teenager greeted me in ASL.  She also signed a likely response and waited.  I finally understood what she wanted and signed back, “I’m good.”  It was a quick but humbling experience.  I immediately wanted to know how to say more, but I can only very slowly sign my name.  Once she realized that, she asked, “Do you offer ASL?”  I had to admit that we currently don’t.  I’ve wanted to offer this world language before, but now more than ever!  Are you or do you know an ASL teacher?  If you do, please email heather.seybold@tennessee.edu to see if we can make it happen!

My other favorite interaction was with three young high school students.  They excitedly approached me to explain their new mission.  They are starting an Asian Culture and Language after-school club at their school.  One young lady wants to teach language but was unsure where to start.  I told her that we like to keep it practical around TLC.  If I’m learning a language, I’d much rather know how to say, “how are you?” and possible answers than know how to conjugate “are” without being able to use it in a sentence.  I suggested teaching simple phrases in context with a lot of listening and repeating.  After all, that’s how we all learned our very first language, and it’s the one we know the best!

These were also my youngest interactions from the festival, and I am so very thankful that a heart-felt interest in learning other cultures and languages is continuing into the next generation.  Thank you, Knoxville, for sharing your best side with me this weekend.

 

-Heather

Why to Choose TLC: A Testimonial

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As a child I was always fascinated with languages and culture, but I never thought I would be able to learn a language myself. I thought that was only for people with family from other places or people that moved out of the country. I took a German class in high school and a French class in college, but to be honest, I don’t remember anything. It was after I went to Guatemala on a mission trip and visited Spain with my best friend that I really found the motivation and dedication to learn a new language. I adored both places that I visited, so naturally I chose Spanish. I googled classes one day in my free time, and I chose TLC because it looked organized, professional and effective. Not a week after that, I started my 1.1 Spanish class with Maya.

This began my journey with learning Spanish, and I instantly fell in love. A whole new world of language and culture was opened up in front of me. The teaching methods that Maya used and still uses are effective for all learning styles and her activities always apply to the grammar/vocabulary point of the class. I love the amount of conversation that we have. Part of the fun of language classes is that you talk about your personal life and the personal lives of those in your class with you. I have made friends that feel like family. Thursday night class is a highlight of my week!

At this point, I have been studying for two years, and I am astonished at my progress. With Maya’s help, instruction and constant encouragement, I have been able to achieve more in learning Spanish than I ever anticipated. The positive impacts of learning Spanish have been numerous. I am better able to communicate with my friends who don’t speak English. I am grateful for the friendships that I wouldn’t have otherwise. I have also taught English as a second language in the past. Knowing Spanish has helped me so much in helping students sign up and feel connected with me as we start the journey of learning English together. From patients in my previous medical clinic, friends from other countries, students learning English and the ability to communicate when I travel, I am grateful for this skill. If you are considering learning a new language, I would highly recommend Tennessee Language Center. They strive for excellence in communication!

Submitted by TLC student Liana Brisbon

Accounting Specialist I – TN Language Center  1900000192 
Description

 

Regular Full-time, Pay Grade 35
 
Location:  Nashville, TN. No relocation expenses covered.
 

The employee will perform financial and administrative duties in areas such as accounting, human resource, and programming. He/she will support the financial administration of the agency. He/she will process accounting and payroll transactions, maintain and monitor the general ledger, and assist with problem solving of financial issues.

Duties and Responsibilities:

• Enter time worked and leave into payroll system for employees in program and administrative areas
• Collect, verify, and maintain new hire paperwork
• Daily preparation of credit card payment spreadsheets
• Maintain the agency purchase card; process payments
• Prepare and process invoices, reimbursements, and contractor payments
• Post transactions to the general ledger
• Pull financial information form the general ledger for analysis
• Follow up on past due invoices by sending them out, calling customers, or sending correspondence
• Assist with recording financial transactions for grants
• Assist with receiving payments and entering them into QuickBooks
• Ensure that deposits are made and recorded in accounting system
• Enter contracts in the contract processing system
• Perform and assist with account reconciliations
• Assists with budget presentation
• Serve as backup to other financial staff
• Maintain financial/administrative files and filing systems; oversee records management
• Maintains manual of how financial and administrative tasks are done
• Schedule, proctor, and submit language proficiency tests (if bilingual)
• Assist in interpretation and translation projects (if bilingual)
• Perform other specialized financial, managerial, and administrative tasks for TLC administration and program areas as assigned
 

Qualifications

 Education:
Required: High school diploma or GED
Preferred: Bachelor’s Degree in business, accounting, or in a related field

Experience:
Required: Four years’ experience in accounts payable, accounts receivable, accounting, business, or in a related field
Preferred: UT or general university experience; SAP/IRIS accounting system experience; interpreting and translating a foreign language, if bilingual

Skills & Behaviors:

• Highly organized, detailed oriented
• Excellent verbal and written skills
• Ability to manage multiple projects
• Ability to deal with diverse populations
• Proficient computing skills in Microsoft Office, especially Excel
• Possess organizational, multi-tasking, and prioritizing skills
• Strong decision-making, problem-solving, and analytical abilities
• Ability to work independently and be self-motivated
• Follow all HIPPA and privacy laws, maintain confidentiality
• Flexible and thorough

Each employee that drives a vehicle for work-related business must have and maintain a valid driver’s license.


Applicants are encouraged to review all position requirements prior to applying. Salary is based on a combination of professional experience and qualifications.
For best consideration, applications should be submitted by July 19, 2019. Applicants should apply electronically at https://hr.utk.edu  Applicants must submit a resume with a minimum of three references. Position is open until filled.

 

Apply Here 

Job

  Accounting/Finance Clerical 

Primary Location

  US-Tennessee-Nashville 

Organization

  Tn Language Center 

Schedule

  Full-time 

Campus/Institute  Institute for Public Service 

Job Posting

  Jul 8, 2019, 8:24:58 PM 

Coincidence? I think not!

My family and I moved to Tennessee last August from Ohio.  I don’t usually advertise this fact, but on one particular morning, I happened to put on an Ohio shirt before heading off to work.

Recently, a Career Coach from Vanderbilt University Career Center, Danielle Bolling, had contacted me about how Vanderbilt University and the Tennessee Language Center might work together.  We set our meeting for Friday, May 31st, but little did we know…

The day of our meeting arrived, the same day that I threw on my Ohio shirt, and coincidentally, the same day that Ohio State would play Vanderbilt in the NCAA baseball tournament. During our meeting, Danielle wanted to know about the services we offer at TLC in order to pass the word on to the students she advises.

I told her about our world language and English classes as well as proficiency exams for those learning a language.  We offer Teaching English as a Second Language and Language Instructor Fellowship programs for those interested in teaching a language, and our Interpretation and Translation Services assist those needing documents or services in a secondary language.  We also offer training to become a court or medical interpreter in addition to our corporate offerings.

Throughout our meeting, Danielle thought of several other connections at Vanderbilt and opportunities to incorporate TLC and its services when advising students, especially those pursuing a World Language degree.

Unlike the baseball game, Vandy did NOT beat OSU that day; the two decided to work together!

That’s all for now.  And remember, an accent is a sign of bravery.

Legal Secretary 1 – Bilingual- Public Defender’s Office

https://www.governmentjobs.com/careers/nashville/jobs/2377026/legal-secretary-1-bilingual-public-defenders-office?keywords=legal%20secretary&pagetype=jobOpportunitiesJobs

Salary
$36,094.77 – $40,907.29 Annually
Location
Nashville, TN
Job Type
Full-Time Non Civil Service
Department
Public Defender
Job Number
PD03991
Closing
6/17/2019 11:59 PM Central
Position Description
The Metropolitan Public Defender’s Office represents adults accused of crimes in Davidson County who cannot afford to hire a lawyer and children in Davidson County charged with being delinquent and unable to hire a lawyer. Cases range from the least serious misdemeanor to complex capital murder cases. Our mission is to defend the liberty, honor and constitutional rights of the individuals, of all ages, whose cases have been entrusted to us. Through zealous advocacy, we strive not only to deliver excellence in our representation of each and every client, but also to stand with our clients and the community in working to create a more just, fair and compassionate legal system. The guiding principle of the Office is that each client is entitled to quality representation that recognizes the client’s dignity and achieves the best possible outcome for the case.  Our attorneys, investigators, social workers and support staff take great pride in providing a high level of service.

This is a non-Civil Service announcement.  This position involves working at the reception/intake desk of the Public Defender’s OfficeThe Public Defender’s Office represents individuals accused of committing crimes in Davidson County who cannot afford to hire a lawyer.  The position involves reviewing and qualifying applicants needing a public defender, and answering a multi-line phone system in a demanding legal office.  The job requires maturity, patience and compassion, as well as the ability to multi-task and pay attention to detail.

Typical Duties
 

  • Greeting and assisting potential clients and other members of the public who come to or call the office
  • Screening potential clients for service eligibility, and following up appropriately
  • Answering a high volume of calls on a multi-line phone system
  • Operating various office machines and equipment
  • Compiling and maintaining electronic and paper records and files
  • Daily court run to Clerk’s Office (filing motions, picking up pleadings filed and distributing them in the office)
  • Basic secretarial duties for General Sessions’ attorneys (printing letters, managing calendars, etc.)

 

Minimum Qualifications
High School Diploma and three (3) years of clerical/administrative experience or two (2) years of college and one (1) year of secretarial experience in a legal field.
Bilingual – Fluent in Spanish and English

Candidates with accreditations earned in a foreign institute are encouraged to apply.

Note: Per Metro Ordinance No. SO94-1078. All employees of the Metropolitan Government shall be residents of the State of Tennessee or become residents of the state within six (6) months of employment as a prerequisite to employment with the Metropolitan Government.

The Metropolitan Public Defender’s Office is an Equal Opportunity Employer, and does not discriminate on the basis of age, race, sex, color, national origin, religion, or disability in admission to, access to, or operations of its programs, services, or activities.

Preferred Experience, Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities
 

  • Computer and phone skills
  • Excellent customer service skills; experience dealing with the public in-person and on the telephone
  • Good organizational skills

HOW TO APPLY

Resumes and cover letters will ONLY be accepted via e-mail and should be sent to Annette Crutchfield at PDApplicants@jis.nashville.org

Requests for ADA accommodation for the recruitment process should be directed to 615-862-6640. 

Agency
Metropolitan Government of Nashville & Davidson County
Address
Human Resources Department
404 James Robertson Parkway, Suite 1000
Nashville, Tennessee, 37219
Phone
(615) 862-6640

Españolistos!

My name is Heather. I’m new around here and I’d like to tell you a story. This story is the kind you can’t really plan, but are happy to be a part of. I have come to be the interim Director of the Foreign Languages Department here at TLC. We are a small department, Maya Campbell (the tall one) and I (curly hair).

 

 

I was sitting in my office one day attending to business as usual, when I hear a gasp, “It’s him!”

“Who?” I ask

“Nate from Españolistos!”

Maya enthusiastically jumped up from her seat to peer around the corner. At this point, I feel like I should know what’s going on but don’t. I want to share in Maya’s excitement, but cannot figure out why we’re peering around corners at the front desk. Maya took the time to explain that she recognized Nate’s voice from the podcast her class voted on.

That could probably use some explanation at this point, too. Nate and his wife, Andrea, have a business called “Spanishland School”. As a part of what they do, they produce a podcast. They have developed a brand based on thinking like a native, with Andrea as the primary and native instructor and Nate, her husband who learned conversational Spanish through the help of various Spanish teachers, language exchanges, and Spanish Podcasts.

Maya, an instructor here at TLC, was looking for a Podcast to incorporate into her curriculum. Instead of just informing her class which podcast they’d be using, she turned it into a SPANISH debate. Students picked which podcast they wanted to represent. They each made a case for their pick and defended their stance. She did this with 3 classes and “Españolistos” was the overwhelming winner!

So back to the story, we continued to peer around the corner at the front desk, not wanting to interrupt their business with TLC, but also not wanting to miss out on the opportunity to introduce ourselves and explain how helpful their podcast has been. I’m not sure what kind of impression we made, but Nate and Andrea graciously agreed to a sit-down with us.

Over some most delicious fast-food chicken, we deliberated how we could work together. Some might see us in competition until you consider that language is best acquired from multiple sources. Well-formed partnerships can foster more opportunities for students to learn, which is the ultimate goal!

We look forward to Nate and Andrea’s visits next week and hosting workshops for them, and Maya may even get to make a guest appearance on their podcast!!

Until next time and remember, an accent is a sign of bravery.

Heather Seybold

Summer Job Opportunity for Spanish Speaker

Job Description:

Seeking a full-time nanny for our two active girls, ages 2. 5 and 5 years old. The position will be Monday through Friday, 7:30am-4pm during June and July 2019. We are seeking a caring, individual who truly enjoys spending time with kids. A successful applicant will be a native or fluent Spanish speaker, willing to converse only with our children in Spanish while engaging them with fun, developmentally appropriate activities.  Included in this position would be an option to stay in our detached cottage house rent free during the two-month position (time can be bridged for out of town applicants if needed) . Compensation based upon experience.  If interested, please contact Adrienne Spraggins at adrienne.spraggins@gmail.com