On October 23rd, the Embassy of Italy in Washington hosted, in the presence of and in conjunction with the Italian Consulates of Boston, Chicago, Detroit, Philadelphia, Houston, Los Angeles, Miami, New York, and San Francisco, the 11th annual Eduitalia Award Ceremony. Nineteen scholarships were awarded to U.S. students who passed the Advanced Placement (AP) Italian exam in 2023 with the highest score.
This year, the Eduitalia Association, accepting the invitation of the Education Offices of the Italian Consular Network in the U.S., also offered 8 scholarships to Italian-language teachers that provide not only didactic-methodological training courses, but also reinforcement of Italian language skills, especially for those teachers who are not native speakers of Italian.
As Minister Plenipotentiary Gonzales pointed out in his opening remarks, the event symbolically closed the 23rd Week of the Italian Language in the World, whose theme “Italian and Sustainability” encouraged reflection on the concept of sustainable learning of a language and its culture. “Sustainable learning,” added Minister Gonzales, “is a harmonious process that aims at the student’s well-being and is based on the pleasure of learning.”
The theme of Italian Language Week found its ideal setting in the Eduitalia award ceremony, whose stars on the one hand were the students, who through a gradual path of study have arrived at the goal represented by passing the Advanced Placement exam in Italian, and on the other hand the teachers who with passion and commitment have accompanied the students along this path. The award-winning students will be able to spend from two to four weeks in Italy at one of Eduitalia’s member schools with the possibility of living an experience of total immersion in the Italian language and culture, as illustrated by Dr. Maio, Eduitalia’s communication manager, at the presentation of the scholarships at the Italian Embassy.
An innovative element this year was the contribution offered to the three winning students from the Washington Consular District by the “Le Dive” Association, which donated a “symbolic check” of $900 to each student for travel expenses to Italy.
As the Minister pointed out, “It is a worthy precedent that implements what was included in the Strategic Plan’s Lines of Action for the promotion of the Italian language through the active involvement of a local Association.”
The ceremony concluded with the hope that the Eduitalia Association, an association of 114 qualified public and private language schools, academies, and universities offering Italian-language courses for foreign students in Italy, will continue to be a reliable and generous partner in the promotion of the Italian language, which in the words of one of the winning students, “has become a part of me!”