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2 colleges receive money to teach languages to military personnel

November 18, 2011 | 10:14 am

Two California universities have received funding to teach military personnel the languages of countries where they may be deployed
Two California universities have received funding to teach military personnel the languages of countries where they may be deployed, the Defense Department announced this week.

San Diego State University received $1.8 million to continue its language program teaching Pashto, Farsi and Arabic -- the languages of Iraq, Iran, Afghanistan, Pakistan and other countries.

In eight-week courses, San Diego State has provided language training to 2,000 active-duty and reserve Marines since 2006.

Cal State Long Beach received a $250,000 grant to develop a pilot program for military personnel, starting with California National Guard soldiers from the 40th Infantry Division based at Los Alamitos. Starting in January, classes in Arabic and Persian Farsi are to be offered.

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-- Tony Perry in San Diego

Photo: Marine Chief Warrant Officer Brandon Smith talks with Afghan villagers in Helmand province. Credit: Cpl. Katherine Solano / Marine Corps

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