"This is the Moment"

The world is no longer quiet here at St. Michael’s College—instead, it’s filled with conversation, laughter and dedicated students. Today marks the first full day for the students at the French Academy.

There was no room for a pause from yesterday’s business, for the classes began today immediately following breakfast. Divided by the students’ language skills, French Academy students poured into each classroom ready to take on all that the teachers have in store for them.

In a Village Called Granada

Welcome to Granada!

Believe it or not, we are now here working at full speed. Our participants arrived on Sunday after a long flight to Madrid. The Program Director and other staff members of Middlebury Interactive and IES, our partner in Granada, greeted them.

After that, we took a bus that followed part of the route that “Don Quijote” chose a few centuries ago. Everybody was tired but happy! Along the way, we had a short stop to eat a light breakfast, to finally arrive to Granada.

The Storm: Student Arrival Day!

The day has finally come: French and Chinese Academy students have landed at St. Michael's College for four weeks of language immersion.

Buzzing in the air today was a combination of excitement, nerves, and curiosity—yet, even with these nerves flowing through the minds of students from both Academies, they still managed to skip the awkward introductions and go right to friendship.

Monsieur Sainsily: Qui est-il?

“Quality is not an act, it is a habit.”Aristotle

Here at St. Michael’s, this philosophy stands strong. The blending of personalities of teachers from all over the country allows for a committed, intellectual, and captivating staff—all of whom have an unwavering passion for foreign languages and cultures.

Today, the Director of the French Academy—David Sainsily—sat down for an interview, in which he answered questions on his educational and personal background, and, also, on his role outside of the Academy.

Will Arabic Be the Language of the Future?

By language of the future, I do not intend to mean a universal language in which both humans and machines will use to interact in a world of increasing proliferation of artificial intelligence. Nor do I aim to suggest that Arabic would be the lingua franca of the 22nd century. To put forward a claim of this sort would require me to delve into the rather dreary details of demographic predictions and politico-economic arrangements of the world. I am more interested in some esoteric aspects of the Arabic language itself.

Students Create Their Own Pincho Recipes

After Chef “JuanMa“‘s pincho cooking instruction, the students paired up and started working on their own creations. They had to combine textures, flavors and ingredients to make their own style of pincho. Each one of the groups presented to the class the reason behind their creation, as well as the meaning and the expected flavor they were creating.

Wrapping Up MMLA 2014

Only one full day of MMLA remains! It’s hard to believe that everything is finally coming to an end. Although the days may be winding down, energy levels remain high as everyone anticipates graduation, the final dance and the ultimate lifting of the Language Pledge.

Today’s theme was “working as a volunteer,” so the morning assembly featured a skit which took place in a soup kitchen. Both servers and less fortunate spoke about the reasons why they involved themselves with the kitchen: either to give back to the community or to take advantage of a much-needed service.

Bastille Day Festivities!

Bonne fête nationale à tous! Sunday was Bastille Day or more often referred to as Le quatorze juillet. Just ten days ago, all academies had a great time celebrating the Fourth of July and this weekend, the French Academy got to celebrate France’s national holiday with plenty of cultural exploration!

A Big Day for the Chinese Academy!

What a day! In the morning, the entire Chinese Academy boarded buses and took off for Chinatown in nearby Philadelphia. First, everyone enjoyed authentic Chinese cuisine at an authentic Szechuan (Sichuan) restaurant, yum! After filling up on all kinds of meats, noodles, tofu, vegetables, and more, we had some time for shopping and exploring in the local stores. Back at campus, everyone was busy enjoying the beautiful weather and preparing for that night’s big event: a Chinese Academy talent show! Some of the many acts included singing, dancing, violin playing, piano playing, and more!


Although we’ve had a lot of fun lately with cultural excursions in Comillas, the Spanish Academy students remain deeply committed to the Language Pledge®. Here are a few pictures illustrating their dedicated efforts in the classroom.

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