Sharon Ahern Fechter
AATSP President’s Message
Saludos, saudações, greetings. Welcome to an exciting new year at
AATSP! I would like to begin the year
by thanking you for granting me the opportunity to serve this outstanding organization,
especially as we draw nearer to the 100th anniversary of our
founding. I am both humbled and
privileged to serve you and pledge to do everything possible to forward the
goals of the association and to support the membership. I would like to thank the outgoing members
of the Executive Council who have given so generously of their time and talents
during their term—Terry
Ballman, Christine Campbell, Cheryl Fuentes-Wagner, and Loknath Persaud—and to
extend a warm welcome to our new members--Elaine Davis, Ana Sánchez-Muñoz,
Pamela Ottenheimer, and Sergio A. Guzmán.
We have much to look forward to in 2014, not the
least of which is our annual conference in Panama. The conference will take place from July 8-11, 2014 at the
Panama Hilton Hotel in Panama City.
You can count on wonderful workshops, interesting sessions, and, as you
might expect, unparalleled excursions.
Our conference theme, "Articulation: A Pathway to Success,” is one that we will consider
throughout the year as we examine articulation pathways in the study of Spanish
and Portuguese. These pathways
include not only articulation between and among various educational sectors and
systems, but also extend to the work force and beyond. At the same time, we will consider our
connections to other disciplines—particularly STEM disciplines—and to our
sister organizations as we join our voice in the national conversation
regarding advocacy and the place of languages as we continue to support Spanish
and Portuguese in all arenas. As
you are aware, the need for advocacy for and education regarding the importance
of languages at all levels continues undiminished.
I remain committed to pursuing the four objectives I
outlined as a candidate for this position. I plan to work with my K-12 colleagues to develop a
workable system to foster further language study at the college and university
level and to appropriately place incoming students. I will strive to expand the membership in the organization
by targeting underrepresented sectors, including community college professors
and adjunct professors. I will
continue to work on strategies rooted in articulation to increase the number of
majors and minors at the undergraduate level, including the active cultivation
of students in the two-year sector for matriculation in our four-year
institutions. Finally, I will work
with my colleagues in Portuguese to provide a platform and rationale to expand
Portuguese offerings at every level.
I wish you the best
for 2014 and look forward to seeing you in Panama. Please look for registration
information on the Web site soon. ¡Todos a una!
Sharon Ahern Fechter