Concordia College language villages celebrate 50th summer
By: Press Release, Concordia College
Concordia Language Villages celebrates its 50th summer of programming in 2010 with special guests, events and programming. Concordia College started the language immersion program in 1961 by renting Luther Crest Bible Camp north of Alexandria, Minn., for the first two-week German session. "Camp Waldsee," which was limited to 72 campers aged 9-12, was a success and the program grew.
Now in its 50th summer, Concordia Language Villages offers 15 languages and year-round programming to more than 10,000 participants each year. Plans are coming together for events throughout the summer and next year, according to Carl-Martin Nelson, Director of Marketing and Communications at the Villages.
“We’re excited to begin the celebration of our 50th summer of language immersion programming and look forward to reconnecting with our many alumni in the process,” Nelson says.
Summer programming includes two International Day events held at Waldsee, the German Language Village. The first I-Day will take place Friday, July 9 and will include special events and ceremonies to honor Waldsee. A ceremony to honor Odell Bjerkness for his service as director of the Villages from 1971-1989 will take place at Skogfjorden Thursday, July 8.
Shaaban M. Shaaban, United Nations Under-Secretary-General for General Assembly and Conference Management, will speak at the second International Day August 13 and will moderate the Global Summit. Each I-Day, many villagers participate in a simulated summit that addresses issues of sustainability, history, or current politics. Shaaban’s expertise and background will add significantly to the experience for villagers. Shaaban will also help celebrate the twin milestones of Al-Waha, the Arabic Language Village’s fifth anniversary and the 50th celebration summer of Concordia Language Villages.
Waldee Fest, a major celebration of Waldsee’s past, present and future with language and culture activities and family fun will take place July 24, 25 and 26 at Waldsee. All former villages, staff and parents are invited to attend.
As Concordia Language Villages prepares for the anniversary, the staff is working to reconnect with at least 50,000 alumni, and invite friends and colleagues of the Villages to become an Alumni Ambassador and help them reach the goal of “50,000 for the 50th.”
Concordia Language Villages, as part of Concordia College, Moorhead, Minn., is a recognized leader in global education offering 15 world language programs. The Concordia Language Villages attract more than 10,000 participants annually from all 50 states and more than 40 countries. Youth ages 7-18 and adults of all language experience levels can take advantage of on-site learning options ranging from a weekend to four weeks.