A picture of Representative Gerald E. Connolly
Gerald C.
Democrat VA 11

About Rep. Gerald
  • Recognizing Ilene Gillispie as a Recipient of the 2012 Critical Language Scholarship

    by Representative Gerald E. Connolly

    Posted on 2013-01-02

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    CONNOLLY of virginia in the house of representatives Wednesday, January 2, 2013 Mr. CONNOLLY of Virginia. Mr. Speaker, I rise to honor Ilene Gillispie, of the Alexandria [[Page E2038]] portion of Fairfax County, a 2012 State Department Critical Language Scholarship (CLS) recipient. Ilene was selected for this competitive award based on her academic ability, exemplary citizenship, and her commitment to learning and mastering a foreign language of critical importance.

    While studying in Chandigarh, India, Ilene studied at the Punjabi Summer Institute and focused on creating a strong foundation for both her language fluency and her cultural competency. She participated in daily educational activities and built relationships with young leaders from all over the world with a focus on the Punjabi language, one of the thirteen ``critical needs'' foreign languages determined by the Department of State. The CLS program--a key component of the National Security Language Initiative--provides fully-funded, group-based, language instruction and structured cultural enrichment experiences to U.S. students overseas. The accelerated program of study over 8-10 weeks is approximately equivalent to one full year of language study, and includes extracurricular activities designed to supplement the formal curriculum.

    Ilene is a student at the New College of Florida. It is inspiring to see young people who are interested in international educational and developmental experiences such as these. Mr. Speaker, I ask my colleges to join me in recognizing Ilene Gillispie's achievements and wishing her continued success in her academic and professional pursuits.


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