The Institute of Critical Languages and Cultural Exchange incorporated is a 501C3 nonprofit community based institution and government contractor. I.C.L.C.E. is currently a contractor with ODNI. It implements NSA STARTALK student and teacher training programs in critical languages and cultural exchange government funded programs. The goal of these programs is to provide all American youth with educational opportunities in the areas of critical language, cultural learning, and global citizenship. I.C.L.C.E. is an active supporter of the United States government outreach efforts to engage U.S. citizens in its endeavors to be part of making our local, national, and international community’s a better place to be. The educational programs provided by I.C.L.C.E. are embedded in equity education principles. Indeed, all the programs high percentage of enrollment and scholarships are designed for the historically underrepresented members of the community.
ICLCE offers Student programs (K-16), Teacher Training programs, and Cultural Exchange and study abroad programs. The main focus is on Less Commonly Taught Languages. These include Arabic, Hindi, Farsi, Urdu, Swahili, and Chinese. ICLCE strategic plan includes procurement of funds to offer a wide range of programs seeking to empower our communities in the U.S and abroad.
The mission of the Institute for Critical Languages and Cultural Exchange Incorporated is to meet an urgent need, identified by the National Security Language Initiative (NSLI). This initiative is "designed to dramatically increase the number of Americans learning critical languages such as Arabic, Chinese, Russian, Hindi, Farsi, and others through new and expanded programs from kindergarten through undergraduate/graduate studies, and into the workforce. An essential component of U.S. national security in the post 9/11 world is the ability to engage foreign governments and peoples, especially in critical regions, to encourage reform, promote understanding, convey respect for other cultures, and provide an opportunity to learn more about America and its citizens. To do this, Americans must be able to communicate in other languages, a challenge for which most citizens are totally unprepared."
The institute plans to offer K-16 credit in critical languages namely Arabic, Chinese, Urdu, Persian, Turkish, Swahili, and Pashtu. Cultural exchange programs will focus primarily on developing Service Learning units, which will involve cooperation between American high school students and peers around the world. These Service Learning Units will have the goal to address global issues in many communities. In other words, they seek to unite youth around the world in activities that will serve our community worldwide. Students from inner city schools and under-represented groups will be encouraged to apply. They will receive a stipend to cover room and board, as well as educational supplies and expenses. The institute plans to organize cultural exchange programs in Egypt, Tunisia, Morocco, and Dubai. This is a pioneering and innovative corporation that is supported by grants and donations. Our primary goal is to open doors for American youth to acquire less commonly taught critical languages and the cultures they are associated with. Most importantly, achieving communication among the youth of the world and establishing understanding will help foster cultural competencies and global citizenship attributes.
Daily events and current global situations indicate the need to offer educational programs such as the ones developed by I.C.L.C.E. Acquisition of competencies in world languages and cultures is important to our economic, political, and social survival. Most importantly, it is at the heart of belonging a member of an increasingly interdependent global community. Learning other languages and the cultures they express is the only initiative that will help alleviate the shrouded misconceptions and plethora of problematic misunderstandings causing strife and wars. Knowing other languages can be rightly compared to golden gate open a world of unique literature, poetry, art, and philosophy defining our identity as human beings and members of a global community. The cultural exchange component of the institute adheres to global citizenship principles. It seeks to enhance citizen diplomacy though educational cultural programs and other government funded projects.
"Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful committed citizens can change the World: indeed, it's the only thing that ever has." - Margaret Mead