Dr. Sara Amani encourages students to celebrate their cultural and linguistic identity
San Luis, AZ (October 6, 2021) – English Composition students at the Arizona Western College San Luis Learning Center (SLLC) are inviting the community to come out and attend their Multilingual Student Expo on Monday, Oct. 11.
Multilingual students in Dr. Sara Amani’s ENG-108 First-Year Composition II and ENG-102 Freshman Composition II classes are celebrating National Hispanic Heritage Month (Sept 15 – Oct 15) and promoting awareness of linguistic and cultural diversity through this upcoming event. There will be both oral and poster presentations given. Some of the topics to be discussed include the benefits of multilingualism, challenges of changing attitudes towards learning multiple languages, multilingual students’ expectations from faculty and staff at AWC, and ways of embracing multilingualism and multiculturalism at AWC.
The event will be held from 3 to 4:30 p.m. in Multi-Purpose Room 104 at the SLLC, 1340 N. 8th Avenue, in San Luis, Arizona. The public and members of the media are invited to attend.
“AWC is very proud to be a Hispanic Serving Institute and recognizes the richness of the cultural identity that runs deep within our students,” said Dr. Sara Amani, Professor of Multilingual Composition Specialist. “We are excited to be observing Hispanic Heritage with a variety of events and activities that highlight the history and contributions of the Hispanic communities.”
Coming from a minority background herself, Amani said she knows what it is like to feel excluded and discriminated against at times, but those experiences have taught her to be flexible and resilient.
“I have passed many barriers to get where I currently am. In the U.S. I have suffered from some false stereotypical views toward Iranians, but I have tried to focus on the bright side, and the equal opportunities that this country promises to provide for everyone,” she said.
“My own experiences have informed my practice of teaching, research, and service. Being a minority and belonging to ‘the other’ group has been challenging for me on a personal and professional level, but it has also helped me build a toolkit for empowering my multilingual students who may face similar challenges based on their identity.”
During the summer of 2019, Amani was considering changing her career path to pursue law school as a way to help defend and fight for minorities like herself. However, when she saw the Professor of Multilingual Composition Specialist position open up for the fall in South Yuma County, she thought it would be a good opportunity to take an active role in furthering diversity and promoting the awareness of multilingualism and multiculturalism at AWC campuses.
“When I learned about my multilingual students’ struggles, I felt obligated to actively encourage them not to surrender to the vast inequities that continue to shape our world. I wanted to empower my students by encouraging them to stay proud of their cultural and linguistic identity. I’m here to help celebrate diversity and stay inclusive and tolerant of differences.”
Dr. Sara Amani
Professor of Multilingual Composition Specialist
Arizona Western College