The school year is beginning with not only with a new group of students to welcome to campus, but a new achievement in the language program to acknowledge as well.

The French department at Pacific was recently honored by the Centre de la Francophone des Amériques, also known as the Center of Francophonie for the Americas. The honor was received in response to a radio program, “Live from USA,” produced by several of Pacific’s French students and hosted by the 2011 Assistant for French studies, Jessica Lebbe.

The radio program was a project that rquired each student was to choose a topic to discuss with Lebbe during his or her designated episode of the program. The topic chosen was meant to showcase an aspect of life for the typical, American college student that may differ from that of a French college student. Topics that were addressed included being a member of a Greek chapter, participating in a school sport, living in a college dorm, working for the campus newspaper and more.

Students of from Assistant Professor Jann Purdy’s French 201 and 202 classes spent weeks preparing their episode topics and scripts while practicing their fluency. Episodes were constructed by Pacific students Chandler Bowen, Tess McShane, Katie Porter, Amy Mayhugh, Melanie Niehus and Dailey Koga. All episodes were initially aired on the French radio station, Click’N’Rock.

Although students were given an opportunity to practice their fluency and connect with other Francophone audiences, “Live from USA” has other achievements to boast. The work of Lebbe and the other students was one of only forty chosen from North America to be broadcasted as part of the Radio de Jeunesse des Amériques, The Youth Radio of the Americas, initiative, housed in Canada.

By being one of the forty selected meant “Live from USA” was broadcasted on an FM station in Quebec, an AM station in Ottowa and on the web.

The acknowledgement and honor given to the French department shows that Lebbe and the other students involved found a way to achieve the Radio de Jeunesse des Amériques goal, which is to “encourage francophone students who live on territories of the Americas to express themselves,” said Lebbe.

Those interested in listening to one of the many broadcasts of “Live from USA” can find the program’s page at www.facebook.com/francais.apacificu.

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