Harvard hires instructor for historic Tagalog language courses


Harvard University has hired its instructor for its first-ever pair of Tagalog language courses.

About the preceptor: Lady Aileen Orsal, a Filipino language pedagogy leader, was hired to teach elementary and intermediate Tagalog courses, according to the Harvard Gazette. She has a background in Philippine Studies — including culture, history and politics — and has conducted research on traditional tattoo art, coffee culture and use of music in political campaigns.

Why this matters: Tagalog is currently the fourth-most-spoken language in the U.S. Orsal’s hiring marks the first time the language will be taught in Harvard’s 400-year history.

Tangent: Harvard also hired Sakti Suryani to teach elementary, intermediate and advanced Bahasa Indonesia. A preceptor is yet to be hired for Thai, which is currently offered as part of a tutorial program.

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