2 MO D E R N L A N G UA G E S & L I N G U I S T I C S A Note From the Chair G reetings from the Department of Modern Languages and Linguistics! Our department has undergone several changes this last year, which I would like to share with you. Former chair of the MLL Department and professor of Spanish, Laura Vidler, was promoted to associate dean of the College of Arts & Sciences in August 2017. While we are excited for her, she could not continue her appointment as department chair. István Gombocz, professor of German, was the interim chair during the fall 2017 semester, and starting Jan. 23, I was appointed new chair. I am thrilled and honored to be leading the department in which I have taught for the last 10 years! I have wonderful, talented colleagues, and I am looking forward to many successful years for our language programs. After 29 years of teaching at USD, István Gombocz announced his retirement. István has been a leading force in the success of our German program, establishing relationships and exchange programs with German universities as well as with a Hungarian university. He has touched the lives of hundreds of students, in both the German and the honors programs at USD. While his retirement is well deserved, we will miss him! He was granted emeritus status in May 2018. Kris Knisely, assistant professor of French, was offered a position at the University of Arizona. Even though he was part of the team for only three years, Kris had a strong presence on the USD campus, giving lectures on diversity and on Francophone cultures, teaching not only the French language, but also “cool” courses, such as Francophone Culture through Cuisine, and also Teaching Methods for Learners of English as a Second Language. We were lucky to have him and will miss him. And now our new colleagues: I am happy to report that MLL has hired two new lecturers: Nathan Bates is our new German program coordinator and Marius Conceatu is coordinating our French and Francophone studies program. Marius and Nathan will continue the great work of our former colleagues and will - of course - bring their own experiences and ideas to the French and German programs respectively. Welcome, Nathan and Marius! Last but not least, I am thrilled to introduce our new department secretary, Mary Schroeder. Mary joined the MLL department in October 2017 and already had to master several challenging organizational situations. She has a kind, outgoing personality and is always willing to orient and help not only students, but anybody who visits our department. I hope you enjoy this newsletter about some of last year’s highlights! We would love to hear your comments! Angela Helmer, Ph.D. Department Chair Modern Languages & Linguistics MLL Co-sponsors Dan Carlsson O n Oct. 10, Dan Carlsson, associate professor and head of the Gotland Archaeological Field School at Gotland University in Sweden, presented “The Vikings! Many Myths / Fewer Facts” at Farber Hall on the USD campus. This event was sponsored by the USD Departments of Anthropology, History and Modern Languages. Carlsson also spent time with the USD Russian classes discussing the historical and cultural relationship between the Vikings and Russia.