Russian Language Journal


communication, foreign language program, culture


Today’s global age presents its share of unique challenges, not the least of which is communication. Whereas in past centuries, fossil fuels played a central role in driving economies and influencing policy decisions, “language is the new oil” in the twenty-first century.1 Some forward thinking individuals and organizations have responded to the times and teamed up with universities and government agencies to develop new and innovative foreign language programs. Consider, for example, the U.S. federally funded National Flagship Language Program that offers upwards of nine months to one year of intensive language instruction in the target language culture and experiential learning in the form of an internship, the objective of which is to produce Level 3 speakers, referring to the federal Interagency Language Roundtable (ILR) scale, or the equivalent of Superior level, according to the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL) proficiency scale.