|Gift helps Voltaire scholars polish their
understanding of French language, culture
RELEASED: July 28, 2005
Vahlkamp adds, "In recent years, several students who had spent a term in Centre's Strasbourg program were able to return to France for a winter term in Besançon, where we've established a link with a language institute there."
The first student who went to Besançon was Whitney Camack. She went on to earn an M.A. in French civilization and literature at the University of Cincinnati, where she is now an adjunct instructor of French. She also teaches at Xavier University.
"The impact on our students, observable upon return, has been spectacular," says Vahlkamp about the follow-up trips. "The fact of being on their own and of speaking French almost exclusively allowed for considerable linguistic progress and, more important, a substantial gain in self-confidence."
A noted Voltaire scholar, Vahlkamp wrote his dissertation on Voltaire and published scholarly articles in Studies on Voltaire. Vahlkamp notes that Strasbourg has a Voltaire connection as well. The writer and philosopher spent one of his many periods of exile in the Alsace region, where Strasbourg is located.
"We're humbled in the French program at Centre to have an emeritus colleague, Charles Vahlkamp, whose enlightenment knows no boundaries of space and time," says Keffer. "Charles is convinced that when our best students become Voltaire Scholars they might one day become scholars of Voltaire!"
Richard Trollinger, vice president for college relations, notes that through programs such as the Voltaire Scholars, Centre, where 75 percent of students study abroad, has become a national leader in international study. "What Centre does through its study abroad program to prepare students for life in a global society is truly remarkable," he says. "The Voltaire Scholars Travel Fund has added value to the study abroad program for students majoring in French and who wish to take their study of French language, literature and culture to a new level."
Students who would like to take advantage of this opportunity should contact Keffer at 859-238-5233 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Anyone interested in making a donation to support the Voltaire Scholars should contact Trollinger at 859-238-5209 or email@example.com.
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