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March 29, 2014 @ 2:39 am

Ep. 178 “I Ma Adahen I Fino’ Chamorro - The Creation of a Standardized College Curriculum for the Chamorro Language

(hosted by Dr. Michael Bevacqua with production assistance of Marlon Molinos) aired 3/21/14

The Chamorro language is currently taught at four institutions of higher education, the University of  Guam, the Northern Marianas College, the Guam Community College, and the University of Hawai’i-Manoa.  As there is no standardized curriculum for teaching Chamorro at the college level, faculty at each institution often have to create their own materials.  Instruction may vary widely from class to the next.  Students taking one level of Chamorro with one instructor, are often lost when moving to the next level, as the next instructor may follow a different curriculum. 

In October 2013,  the University of Guam began a three year project funded by the Administration of Native Americans to create a standardized curriculum for teaching Chamorro at the college level. The project entitled “I Ma Adahen I Fino’ Chamorro gi Koleho” or “The Preservation of the Chamorro Language at the Post-Secondary Level” has brought together the four institutions currently teaching Chamorro to determine a unified curriculum of instruction for four semesters of Chamorro language. 

This episode features an interview with Dr. Faye Untalan (funtalan2008@gmail.com) who is the principal investigator for this grant.  Dr.  Untalan is retired faculty from the School of Public Health at the University of Hawai’i and currently a research associate with the Office of Sponsored Programs at the University of Guam.  She is the first Chamorro woman to earn a Doctorate in Social Work.  She discusses her work in analyzing the Chamorro diasporic community, which now outnumbers those living in their home islands in the Marianas, and the significance of this Chamorro language project. 

This episode also includes comment from Beau Mesa, Francine Fujihara, and Rusty Reediyalo who are CM 101 students at the University of Guam.  

The songs “I Lalo’ An Gumupu” and Lelu Lelu Lelu” are from the album “Musikan Guahan” distributed by the Guam Council on Arts and the Humanities.  These songs are “kantan Chamoritta” an improvisational style of singing that is no longer regularly practiced by Chamorros today.

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