Spanish and French students from the local area recently competed in University of the Cumberlands’ World Languages Cup. This was the fourth year running the competition, and students from Corbin, Knox Central, Lynn Camp and South Laurel High Schools showed up to compete.

“We want students to have a purpose in learning,” said Roger Smith, a Spanish teacher at South Laurel. “We want the kids to know that other people are using these languages. Some people have studied in Spain, some have other experiences, there are things you can do with a language. It’s good for the kids. It challenges them.”

The competition is organized by Cumberlands’ World Languages faculty, namely Dr. Laura Dennis (French), Dr. Ela Molina (Spanish) and Jennifer Marsh (Spanish). Cumberlands’ Spanish and French students helped as well. The Cup took place in Gatliff Chapel, where students competed in a series of language assessments. When the students were not competing, they had the opportunity to speak with Cumberlands students who hail from other countries or who have travelled abroad. The high school students also got the chance to take a campus tour.

“This event is a wonderful opportunity for these high school students,” said Jennifer Marsh. “It’s one of those times when students can learn and have fun at the same time! The event benefits the community by promoting local Spanish and French programs at our University and at local high schools.”

“I hope that the high school students have the courage to explore different places and not be afraid,” said Nicole Ceasu, a student who spent more than a month in Morocco last summer. “Learning more about a culture and different people has definitely opened my eyes and changed my perspective. It has helped me broaden my perspectives and even change my opinions of other cultures.”

The winners of this year’s World Languages Cup were:

Spanish Listening 1

First Place – Richard Wagers, Knox Central
Second Place – Adrian Pataki, Corbin
Third Place (tie) – Jonah Black, Corbin; James Rogers, South Laurel

Spanish Listening 2

First Place – Lindsey West, Knox Central
Second Place (tie) – Andrew Durant, South Laurel; Kaeli Hale, Knox Central
Third Place (tie) – Jaycee King, Knox Central; Dwalenna Stepp, Corbin

Spanish Speaking 1

First Place – Kody Rose, Corbin
Second Place – Anthony Cage Grubb, Knox Central
Third Place – Sarah Price, Knox Central

Spanish Speaking 2

First Place – Laura Mills, Knox Central
Second Place – Emily Foster, Corbin
Third Place – Kaylie Grimes, South Laurel

Spanish Speaking 3

First Place – Nancy Jane Jackson, Corbin
Second Place – Melina Durham, South Laurel
Third Place – Hannah Jones, Corbin

French Listening Level 1

First Place – Madison Skinner
Second Place – Kara Root
Third Place – Andrea Dugger

French Listening Level 2

First Place  – Calb Van Norstran
Second Place – Kim Root
Third Place – MaKaela Faulkner

French Speaking Level 1

First Place  – Becky Stewart
Second Place – Kristen Jones

French Speaking Level 2

First Place  – Logan Bargo
Second Place – Sophie Dunn
Third Place – Brooke Skinner

Each winner received a ribbon and a certificate for their placements.