MIDDLEBURY, Vt. - The Middlebury College Language Schools will hold commencement for the 92nd summer session in Mead Chapel on Friday, Aug. 18, at 5 p.m. The ceremony will be preceded by a concert on the Mead Chapel carillon performed by George Matthew, Jr. Mead Chapel is on Hepburn Road off College Street (Route 125). Both events are free and open to the public.

Middlebury College President Ronald D. Liebowitz and Dean of the Language Schools and Schools Abroad Michael Geisler will award degrees to about 170 master of arts candidates in French, German, Italian, Russian and Spanish. Three candidates are expected to receive doctorates in modern languages. Awards for distinguished study will also be given to select students in the schools of Arabic, Chinese, Japanese and Portuguese.

Yale College Associate Dean of International Affairs Jane Edwards will deliver the commencement address. Edwards has long been an advocate of integrating international experience with higher education to ensure that students are exposed to the preparation required for life in a global society. Before joining Yale, where she will begin this fall, Edwards was director of international studies at Harvard University from 2003-2006. While at Harvard, she was instrumental in fostering the undergraduate study abroad programs. Prior to her position at Harvard, Edwards was director of international studies at Wesleyan University.

Edwards, who speaks several languages, has traveled extensively and lived and worked in Buenos Aires; Wellington, New Zealand; and Paris. She completed her undergraduate education in England, where she received both a bachelor of arts and master’s degree from New Hall, Cambridge University. She was awarded a Thouron Fellowship for graduate study in the United States and completed a doctorate in folklore and folklife at the University of Pennsylvania. She is active in several professional associations, including the Journal of Studies in International Education and NAFSA: Association of International Educators.

Following her address, an honorary doctor of letters degree will be conferred upon Edwards.

Middlebury College Professor Emeritus of Music Emory M. Fanning will accompany the commencement procession and recession on the Mead Chapel organ.

Middlebury College Language Schools

Middlebury College’s first Language School, the German School, was founded in 1915, followed by the French and Spanish Schools in 1916 and 1917, respectively. Since then, Italian, Russian, Chinese, Japanese and Arabic programs have been added. In 2003, a ninth program, the Portuguese School, opened. The language programs follow an immersion philosophy, at the heart of which is a Language Pledge - a formal commitment to speak, read and write only in the student’s respective language of study for the duration of the summer session.

Middlebury also offers language programs at the C.V. Starr-Middlebury Schools Abroad located at 27 sites in 11 countries: Buenos Aires and Tucumán, Argentina; Belo Horizonte and Niteroi, Brazil; Concepción, La Serena, Santiago, Temuco, Valdivia and Valparaíso, Chile; Hangzhou, China; Paris and Poitiers, France; Mainz and Berlin, Germany; Ferrara and Florence, Italy; Guadalajara and Xalapa, Mexico; Irkutsk, Moscow and Yaroslavl, Russia; Getafe, Logroño, Madrid and Segovia, Spain; and Montevideo, Uruguay.