NEWBERRY — The Newberry College Spanish Academy began in the fall of 2010, with the mission to “give children the ability to study a foreign language and be exposed to a new culture” according to Dr. Gregory Cole, Spanish professor.
Elementary schools in Newberry County do not offer foreign languages and the Spanish Academy believes that “being exposed to a new language is a good start to the academic window.”
Cole started the program with the help of Reggie Wicker, principal at Newberry Elementary School. Thus, the Spanish Academy consists of The Newberry Elementary School students and volunteers from the Spanish Program at the college. Cole is responsible for overseeing the curriculum and recruiting volunteers.
The program, in its seventh year, has the most student volunteers it has ever had.
“Newberry has a rather large Hispanic community for being where it is,” Cole said.
By exposing children to another culture and language, the Academy believes it can improve their academics.
Cole and the Academy strive to give children the opportunity to be exposed to other cultures and languages for the student’s benefits. They are always looking for volunteers and Cole welcomes any newcomers.