Under the theme “English: A bridge to the world”, the Embassy of the United States of America and the Binational Center Instituto Cultural Dominico-Americano opened this year’s Annual English Teaching Conference.
The opening ceremony was presided by the Ambassador of the United States in the country, Mr. James W. Brewster; the President of the Board of Directors of the ICDA, José del Carmen Ariza; Executive Director of ICDA and Rector of the University Dominico Americana (UNICDA), Rafael Marion-Landais; Cultural Attaché, Mr. John Dunne; the President of the Academic Committee of the ICDA Board of Directors, Mrs. Ellen Ducy, guest speaker, Leslie Opp-Beckman, and Languages School Director, Grisel del Rosario completed the main table.
The conference, which also was sponsored by National Geographic Learning- Cengage Learning and several international publishers, focused on issues related to English’s role in a global world, as well as the need for new conceptualizations and learning innovations that characterize this century.
During his opening remarks, Ambassador Brewster said: ” Teaching English is one way we can help these young people to improve their lives. English has become the world’s language for commerce, trade, and scientific research, so learning English can open many doors and expand job opportunities for young people. President Obama also recognized that as people learn another language, it facilitates communication and helps people find ways to work together and to solve common problems”.
The conference included plenary sessions presented by international speakers. The specialist Leslie Opp-Beckman, whose visit was sponsored by the U.S. Embassy’s Department of Public Affairs addressed the theme “Shaping the way we teach English: Building bridges around the world” as opening plenary; Jair Felix with “Developing civic values through English teaching”. ”Nathalie Hammerton addressed the issue, Can there be a single methodology for teaching English? was the closing speaker.
About the Conference
The Annual English Teaching Conference has been held in Dominican Republic since the 50s, strengthening the educational work in favor of cultural and educational development by the Instituto Cultural Dominico Americano since 1947. Since its inception, the Institute Cultural Dominico Americano (ICDA) has been the leader in English language teaching in Dominican society, introducing quality, variety and innovation in its academic programs.