Events and Announcements

Upcoming Events

We Must Go Home Again: English Language Variation & Educational Policy in the U.S. South – MLC Speaker Series, April 22, 2016

Vanne Charity Hudley

Date, time, location: Friday, April 22, 1:00 pm – 2:15 pm, Poulton Hall 230

We Must Go Home Again: English Language Variation & Educational Policy in the U.S. South

Anne H. Charity Hudley, Ph.D., Associate Professor, College of William and Mary

Linguists and educators have greatly contributed to understanding the role of language in factors that contribute to educational inequality. Nevertheless, there remains a significant need for linguists to develop practical, and easy-to-implement classroom materials that are both linguistically and educationally informed, and to disseminate relevant linguistic information to educators that addresses the specific needs of students and educators within their local schools and communities. In order to work towards a comprehensive model of integrative linguistic justice in the U.S. South, Dr. Anne H. Charity Hudley shares findings from her work in sociolinguistics and education policy with the Virginia Capstone English Academy, The Middle Grades Partnership, and her National Science Foundation grant “Collaborative Research: Assessing the Results of Sociolinguistic Engagement with K-12 STEM Education in Maryland and Virginia Public and Independent Schools.” Such initiatives reveal how linguists, educators, and education policy makers might work together to provide a comprehensive framework for continued integration of sociolinguistic policy into schools and communities throughout the U.S.

Anne Harper Charity Hudley is Associate Professor of Education, English, Linguistics, and Africana Studies, and the inaugural William and Mary Professor of Community Studies at the College of William and Mary in Williamsburg, Virginia. She directs the William and Mary Scholars Program. Her research and publications address the relationship between language variation and Pre K-16 educational practices and policies. Charity Hudley’s books Understanding English Language Variation in U.S. Schools and We Do Language: English Language Variation in the Secondary English Classroom , co-authored with Christine Mallinson of the University of Maryland Baltimore County, are published by Teachers College Press in the Multicultural Studies Series. She has served as a consultant to the National Research Council Committee on Language and Education and to the National Science Foundation’s Committee on Broadening Participation in the Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) Sciences. She received a National Science Foundation Minority Postdoctoral Fellowship, a National Science Foundation Minority Research Starter Grant and an NSF Collaborative Research Grant to create workshops on language variation for educators.

Professional Research in Media Measurement – MLC Speaker Series, March 18, 2016

Casey Langer Tesfaye

Date, time, location: Friday, March 18, 11:30 am – 1:00 pm, Poulton Hall 230

Professional Research in Media Measurement

Casey Langer Tesfaya, Manager and Research Methodologist, Nielsen

Would you like the opportunity to learn more about the types of research a linguist can work on in an applied corporate setting? In this talk you will have an opportunity to learn more about professional research in media measurement. As a behavioral methods researcher at Nielsen I work on recruitment, retention and coaching of TV and Radio ratings participants by mail, telephone, and in-person. Toward this goal, I regularly use strategies such as web usability testing, behavioral methods communications, translation and adaptation, focus groups, in-depth interviews, and call monitoring. You will be introduced to some of these projects, as well as the experiences and challenges of communicating and collaborating across business groups, across national borders and across mediated channels.

Casey Langer Tesfaye (MLC ’13) is a research methodologist with twenty years of professional research experience working across a variety of disciplines and settings. While in the MLC she founded the Free Range Research blog, crafted a persona around her professional interests and explored the intersections of applied and academic research across disciplines. As a manager in the Behavioral Methods division within Nielsen’s Data Science organization, Casey is exposed to a variety of research methods and projects, many of which would hold special interest to linguistics students.

Deaf-Hearing Professional Interactions and Partnerships Workshop – MLC Speaker Series, February 19, 2016

Ardavan_Guity Risa_Shaw

Date, time, location: Friday, February 19, 10 am – 12:30 pm, Poulton Hall 230

Deaf-Hearing Professional Interactions and Partnerships Workshop

Ardavan Guity, Gallaudet University
Risa Shaw, PhD., Gallaudet University

Let’s get together to talk about how to have successful and effective interactions and collaborations among Deaf and hearing professionals! We will combine presentation and break-out groups to address and practice how to make workplaces and organizations welcoming and accessible to Deaf professionals in order to promote partnerships. We will consider perspective, etiquette, Deaf culture and language differences, legal responsibilities and resources, quality of interpreter services, how to discern the effectiveness of interpreters, where to find resources and know what your responsibilities are, and how to foster Deaf-hearing relationships. This workshop will provide information and opportunities for MLCers and other (future) professionals to successfully navigate Deaf-hearing professional interactions.

Ardavan Guity is from Tehran, Iran. He is from a Deaf family and went to a Deaf school for most of his life. His work in activism started at an early age–at age 12, he was a UNICEF delegate for children and teenagers with disabilities. In this role he gave a presentation at the UNICEF conference in Tehran, Iran. Later he founded an association for Deaf youth under the Iranian National Council of the Deaf. In this role, he participated as a representative for Asian Youth Deaf Camp in Miyazaki, Japan. After learning from this experience, he founded the first Iranian Youth Deaf camp and has overseen its annual gatherings. Ardavan is passionate about spreading awareness to Deaf youth about the richness of their language and culture. Later, Ardavan also served as a delegate for the 2011 World Federation of the Deaf Congress in South Africa. Following this, he was invited to Turkey to teach interpreters about International Sign Language at the 5th Conference of Sign Language in Ankhara. After getting a degree in computer science from a hearing university in Iran, he decided to come to Gallaudet to further his education in Linguistics and Deaf studies, where he continues to actively support Deaf communities around the world. His goal is to continue to advocate for the Iranian Deaf community and support education and awareness for Deaf people, especially children, in developing countries.

Risa Shaw, Ph.D., is a professor at Gallaudet University in the Linguistics Department, and is a practicing interpreter and interpreter educator. Her research interests include interpreting, legal settings, narratives, and trauma. Risa is often found playing soccer or gardening.

Join the Wikipedia Year of Science to improve linguistics articles – MLC Speaker Series, February 12, 2016

Jami Mathewson Samantha Erickson

Date, time, location: Friday, February 12, 1 pm – 2 pm, Poulton Hall 230

Join the Wikipedia Year of Science to improve linguistics articles

Jami Mathewson – Educational Partnership Manager, The Wiki Education Foundation
Samantha Erickson- Outreach Manager, The Wiki Education Foundation

Students use Wikipedia — but have you ever asked them to contribute content? In this workshop, staff members from the Wiki Education Foundation will talk about why Wikipedia’s quality is so important and how students can improve the linguistics content. In contributing to Wikipedia, students gain skills in media literacy, fact-based writing, research, collaboration, and critical thinking. Along the way, they can increase the number of high-quality articles about linguistics and language available to the public.

This presentation is for linguistics faculty and graduate students who are preparing for university teaching careers.

At this presentation, you’ll learn about best practices for using Wikipedia as a teaching tool and how Wiki Ed can support you and your students in this innovative service learning assignment. We will discuss the Wikipedia Year of Science as well as the Linguistic Society of America’s initiative to improve linguistics articles on Wikipedia.

Jami Mathewson develops partnerships with educational institutions to increase participation in Wiki Ed’s programs, bring content expertise into the organization, and improve the availability of information related to their disciplines on Wikipedia. She identifies ways to support partners who are looking to promote the use of Wikipedia as a teaching tool on a large scale — including help with publications, printed materials, conference presentations, training new participants, and documenting metrics and outcomes.

Samantha Erickson leads Wiki Ed’s outreach to those who are interested in participating in Wiki Ed’s programs. She is the main point of contact for instructors learning how to implement a meaningful and successful assignment into their higher education classrooms. She can also help institutions sponsor a Wikipedia Visiting Scholar.

MLC Happy Hour, with special guest Gretchen McCulloch

Date, time, location: Thursday, January 14, 2016, 5:00-8:00 PM, Continental Pool Lounge – 1911 North Fort Myer Drive Arlington, VA 22209

Join the MLC as we kick off the 2016 semester with happy hour at Continental Pool Lounge. Along with students and alumni, we welcome special guest Gretchen McCulloch, resident linguist at The Toast and our first MLC speaker of 2016. Come enjoy drinks and mingling and take advantage of this opportunity to talk with Gretchen about her work as ambassador of linguistics to a general audience before her talk on Friday, January 15.

Writing, talking and working LINGUISTICS – MLC Speaker Series, January 15th 2016


Date, time, location: Friday, January 15, 1 pm – 2:15 pm, Poulton Hall 230

Writing, talking and working LINGUISTICS

Gretchen McCulloch

Do you wish people knew more about linguistics? Do people’s eyes glaze over when you talk about your research, even though you know deep inside that it’s really fascinating? Are you worried about how you’re going to make linguistics relevant to potential employers after graduation? Are you interested in how linguistics topics make their way from academic journals and textbooks into popular articles and books?

Explaining linguistics to the general public is what I do for a living, and it involves several learnable skills. I’ll talk about explaining complex ideas without getting bogged down in terminology, the differences between teaching a class versus explaining in a one-off session, and how to make your explanations lively instead of dry. I’ll also discuss my own experience in writing pop linguistics, being good at social media, how to pitch and write an article for a news outlet, and how pop linguistics books get published. And more broadly, I’ll talk about “Linguistics + X” — combining linguistics with other areas you already know to give you job ideas and make you a better candidate.

Although I’ll be talking primarily about explaining linguistics in terms of the public and non-academic employers, this talk is also relevant to linguists with a more academic focus who need to explain their research for deans, grant proposals, colleagues in other departments, or simply their friends and family.

Gretchen McCulloch writes about linguistics for a general audience, including an upcoming book on internet language with Penguin. Online, she’s the resident linguist at The Toast, and has also written for Mental Floss, Slate, Quartz, Schwa Fire, and She’s done radio interviews about internet linguistics in four countries, on NPR, the BBC, the CBC, and the ABC (Australia). Gretchen blogs daily at All Things Linguistic and tweets @GretchenAMcC.

About the MLC Speaker Series:
Speakers in the MLC series are linguists and practitioners in a broad range of industries, from academic research to market research and user experience design. The MLC events are focused on highlighting how practitioners apply linguistic training in their chosen fields, as well as on practical career development topics tailored to linguists.

A Researcher’s Path to Language Assessment and Development

For our final Speaker Series event of 2015, we welcome Dr. Jennifer Renn from the Center for Applied Linguistics.

Date, time, location: Friday, December 4th 2015 at 1-2:15pm in Poulton 230

Research and management in the fields of education, language testing and development are all lucrative areas for linguists in all areas of specialization. In this interactive talk, Jennifer Renn will share insights from her own diverse career path following her Ph.D. She will describe her postdoctoral work at the Frank Porter Graham Child Development Institute at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where she worked on various projects investigating the relationship between language and dialect use and academic achievement outcomes in minority youth, and contributed to grants for the National Science Foundation and the Institute of Education Sciences. She will also discuss her current work at the Center for Applied Linguistics, where she juggles several roles as researcher, writer, and reviewer. Finally, Jennifer will share practical tips for linguists who are thinking about careers in fields adjacent to the traditional faculty path.

Jennifer Renn is a sociolinguist and a Senior Research Associate at CAL. Her research interests include language variation, language education, and working with diverse learners. In her current position, she facilitates and supports research activities across CAL by collaborating with teams to produce, review, and revise studies and subsequent written documentation on the outcome of quantitative and psychometric research and analyses pertaining to language testing and applied linguistics projects. She also functions as a research expert internally to CAL by providing input on projects and responding to questions about research design and implementation and provides expertise in the writing of research documents, technical reports, and technical briefs summarizing research results. In addition, she supports research across CAL by providing sociolinguistic expertise to projects and as the Chair of CAL’s Institutional Review Board. Prior to joining CAL, Jennifer worked as an Institute of Education Sciences Postdoctoral Fellow in Early Childhood Education at the Frank Porter Graham Child Development Institute at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She holds both a Master’s and a Ph.D. in Linguistics from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Sociolinguistics and health communication: Perspectives of a lone linguist at the NIH – MLC Speaker Series, November 6th 2015


Date, time, location: Friday, November 6th, 1 pm – 2:15 pm, Poulton Hall 230

Sociolinguistics and health communication: Perspectives of a lone linguist at the NIH

Wen-Ying Sylvia Chou, PhD, MPH

As a Program Director at the National Cancer Institute (part of the NIH), Sylvia oversees a portfolio of cancer communication grants while engaging in research projects related to social media, clinical interactions, and health disparities. In this talk, Sylvia will share her experiences collaborating with colleagues from diverse scientific disciplines and lessons learned from representing a “minority” field in these projects and within the NIH. The presentation will highlight her current projects in communication about obesity, cancer prevention, and advanced cancer and palliative care. She will discuss the role of linguistics in the endeavors as well as ways sociolinguistics may frame their expertise in multidisciplinary settings.

Wen-Ying Sylvia Chou, PhD, MPH, is a Program Director in the Health Communication and Informatics Research Branch of the National Cancer Institute (NCI). Originally trained as a sociolinguist, she has extensive experience conducting mixed methods research in health communication, social media, and patient-provider communication about cancer and palliative care. Her publications have examined the role of the changing media landscape in health care and public health practice. She is leading a number of trans-NIH initiatives in promoting innovative behavioral science research. As a Program Director, Sylvia supervises a NIH-funded research portfolio on health literacy, patient-centered communication in cancer care, health disparities, and Web 2.0 technologies. She completed a post-doctoral fellowship through National Cancer Institute’s Cancer Prevention Fellowship Program; she holds a MS and PhD in Linguistics from Georgetown University, and a Master of Public Health from the Interdisciplinary MPH program at UC Berkeley.

Scalable and Domain Adaptable Automatic Discourse Generation – MLC Speaker Series, September 18th 2015

Please join us for the first installment of the Fall 2015 MLC Speaker Series!

As our first speaker this semester, we welcome Dr. Blake Howald, Manager of Content Strategy and Planning at Thomson Reuters and GU alumnus.


Date, time, location: Friday, September 18th, 1 pm – 2:15 pm, Poulton Hall 230

Scalable and Domain Adaptable Automatic Discourse Generation

Blake Howald, JD, PhD – Electronic Publications Associate at University of Pittsburgh

In this talk, I will describe an automatic discourse generation system (also known as Natural Language Generation or NLG) that automatically creates financial reports, biographies and weather alerts from numerical data. This system is a hybrid of statistical and template-based approaches to NLG that relies on natural language processing, machine learning and linguistic theories of discourse structure. In evaluating the system’s performance via crowdsourced and expert evaluations, we not only gain objective measures of success and failure, but also additional insights into the very nature and complexity of NLG, the linguistics of interaction and artificial intelligence tasks in general. For students in linguistics, computer science and related fields, this presentation will illustrate some of the exciting cross-disciplinary research opportunities that currently exist in the Information Technology and Services industry, as well as the day-to-day role linguistics can play in corporate technology environments.

Blake Howald is Manager of Content Strategy and Planning in Thomson Reuters’ central technology group where he focuses on efforts to streamline the creation, maintenance and governance of content within an enterprise (“big data”) context. Previous to this role, Blake was a Senior Research Scientist in Thomson Reuters’ Research and Development Group where he worked on a number of projects including natural language generation, automatic summarization and social network analysis. His research interests include computational semantics, pragmatics and the analysis of discourse structure from a combination of annotation, statistical machine learning and deep learning methods. Blake received a BA from the University of Pittsburgh, a JD from the University of Detroit Mercy and a MS and PhD from Georgetown University.

MLC Open House




Date, time, location: Friday, September 25, 2015, 3 pm – 4:30 pm, Poulton Hall, Room 255


Are you interested in language, interaction, and culture? Are you looking for a graduate degree tailored to your professional and academic goals? Join current students, alumni, the MLC director, and others interested in Georgetown University’s MLC program for an informational open house. Light refreshments will be provided.

RSVP for this event at Eventbrite.

Past Events

The Linguist in the Library with a Candlestick: CLUES for Working in an Academic Library – MLC Speaker Series, April 17th 2015

Please join us for the fourth and final MLC Speaker Series event of the semester!

This week we are joined by Lauren Collister, sociolinguist and open access advocate.


Date, time, location: Friday, April 17th, 1 pm – 2:15 pm, Poulton Hall 230

The Linguist in the Library with a Candlestick: CLUES for Working in an Academic Library

Lauren B. Collister, PhD – Electronic Publications Associate at University of Pittsburgh

The academic library is often viewed as the heart of the campus and is one of the behind-the-scenes drivers of scholarly research and university education. Libraries require people with many different skill sets to drive their various programs and initiatives in support of their campus communities. Linguists bring a particular set of skills to the academic library which I call CLUES: Computers, Language, Understanding, Education, and Science. Whether it’s expertise at using digital research tools and software, linguistic knowledge of communication styles, experience as an author or editor of scholarly journals and books, practical knowledge of the university teaching experience, or knowledge of data gathering requirements for research projects, linguists have the tools to contribute to an academic library environment and find a place to pursue their scholarly interests. In this talk, I will describe how my background in linguistics and academia got me into the scholarly communication field, and I will share initiatives being developed by libraries across the world that align with a linguistics background. We will also explore actual job postings that illuminate the roles that linguists can play in the academic library world.

Lauren B. Collister, Ph.D., is a sociolinguist, digital games scholar, and Open Access advocate. She works for the Office of Scholarly Communication and Publishing at the University Library System at the University of Pittsburgh. In her role, she helps journal editors manage software and policies for publishing Open Access journals and does outreach work about Open research, education, and publishing in the campus community and beyond. She also teaches online for Southern New Hampshire University.

Lauren tweets at @parnopaeus and blogs at

About the MLC Speaker Series:
Speakers in the MLC series are linguists and practitioners in a broad range of industries, from academic research to market research and user experience design. The MLC events are focused on highlighting how practitioners apply linguistic training in their chosen fields, as well as on practical career development topics tailored to linguists.

MLC Linguistics Career Expo! April 7th

MLC Linguistics Career Expo pic

Are you a linguist exploring career paths in survey research, natural language technology, writing, non-profit research, marketing, media production, and beyond? Join us for the MLC Linguistics Career Expo!

April 7th, 6 – 7:30pm, Poulton Hall 230.
RSVP for the Expo

Here at the MLC, April means the Linguistics Career Expo. Each year the MLC hosts a networking event, allowing linguists at all levels – including Bachelor’s, Master’s, PhD, and beyond – to find out more about the diverse career paths that linguists take after graduation.

At the Expo, you will have time to meet representatives of companies that hire linguists, to find out more about current and future opportunities for linguists (particularly in the DC area), and to learn from linguists working in a variety of industries about their career paths.

This year, we are joined by the following organizations: IBM Watson, WAMU 88.5, University of Maryland Center for the Advanced Study of Language, Marketeching Solutions, Center for Applied Linguistics, Hanover Research, FrameWorks Institute,the US Census Bureau, and Nielsen.

We look forward to seeing you on the 7th!

Communications, policy and outreach: Party in the LSA! MLC Speaker Series with Brice Russ, March 20th

It’s time for the third MLC Speaker Series event of the Spring semester! This week, we are joined by Brice Russ, Director of Communications at the Linguistic Society of America. Details below. Don’t miss it!

Date, time, location: Friday, March 20th, 11 am – 12:15 pm, Poulton Hall 230

Brice Russ, Director of Communications at the Linguistic Society of America

Communications, Policy, and Outreach: Party in the LSA

At the Linguistic Society of America, Brice Russ does everything from PR and public policy to social media and customer service. In his talk, Brice will share how he went from being a variationist sociolinguist to a communications director, what the LSA is doing for linguists beyond Language and the Annual Meeting, and what lessons from his own experience might be useful for linguists exploring future careers.

Brice Russ is the Director of Communications for the Linguistic Society of America. Before joining the LSA in 2014, Brice served as the Public Relations Team Lead for Wolfram Research, creators of Mathematica and Wolfram|Alpha. He also volunteers as the Assistant Director for Yuri’s Night, the World Space Party. Brice received his M.A. in linguistics from The Ohio State University and his B.A. in linguistics (with a minor in English) from UNC-Chapel Hill.

About the MLC Speaker Series:
Speakers in the MLC series are linguists and practitioners in a broad range of industries, from academic research to market research and user experience design. The MLC events are focused on highlighting how practitioners apply linguistic training in their chosen fields, as well as on practical career development topics tailored to linguists.

A Linguist in the World of Digital Marketing: MLC Speaker Series with Aviad Eilam, February 19th


Please join us for the second MLC Speaker Series event of the semester!

**Note that this event is scheduled for Thursday evening in ICC**

Date, time, location: Thursday, February 19th, 5:30-7pm, ICC 450

Aviad Eilam, Social Media Marketing Specialist at Rosetta Stone

A Linguist in the World of Digital Marketing

Though social media is no longer a new phenomenon, it continues to change and evolve at an extremely rapid pace. Over the past few years, many social media channels have transformed into digital marketing platforms, where a wide range of businesses and organizations can now advertise their products and services. Thus, running a social media channel nowadays involves not only creating and curating content of interest to your followers, but also managing paid advertising on the channel. This includes everything from selecting images for ads and coming up with ad copy to analyzing results and optimizing accordingly. In this talk I describe how someone with a linguistics background such as myself got into social media and why I think it is an appropriate field for people with this background, and I suggest ways in which I believe linguists can make themselves more relevant for social media and digital marketing jobs.

Aviad Eilam is a social media marketing specialist at Rosetta Stone. In this capacity he manages all organic content and paid advertising on multiple social media channels, including Facebook and Twitter, and is responsible for a multimillion dollar budget to drive revenue, email signups, and mobile app installs. A linguist by training with an expertise in Semitic languages, he graduated with a PhD from the University of Pennsylvania in 2011 and has since written and spoken widely on alternative careers for academics.

About the MLC Speaker Series:
Speakers in the MLC series are linguists and practitioners in a broad range of industries, from academic research to market research and user experience design. The MLC events are focused on highlighting how practitioners apply linguistic training in their chosen fields, as well as on practical career development topics tailored to linguists.

The Business of Language: MLC Speaker Series with Terena Bell, January 30th

To kick off the Spring semester MLC Speaker Series, we welcome Terena Bell, founder and CEO of In Every Language, to the MLC!

Topic: Why the Business of Language has Nothing to do with Language.
Time, date, and location: Friday January 30th, 1-2:15pm, Poulton Hall 230

What does it take to be successful in the translation and localization industry? How can linguists find their niche? And what do you need to know, other than languages? In this interactive presentation, Terena Bell will discuss current and global issues in the field of translation and localization, including technological developments, access, and sustainability, and
provide practical tips for linguists who want to make their mark.

Terena Bell is the founder and CEO of In Every Language, which offers a variety of translation, interpretation, localization and language technology services. She also writes and speaks on a host of translation issues for professional audiences, including in MultiLingual Magazine.

Find out more about In Every Language at or tweet @InEverylanguage

What is Klingon? MLC Speaker Series with Marc Okrand, November 21st

As the semester draws to a close, we are delighted to welcome Dr. Marc Okrand to the MLC!mokrand

Topic: What is Klingon?
Time, date, and location: Friday November 21st, 1-2:15pm, Poulton Hall 230

The Klingon language, which began as a few lines of dialogue in the first Star Trek movie, has grown to be what the Guinness Book of World Records once dubbed the world’s “largest fictional language.”

This talk will review the origins of the language, why its grammar and vocabulary developed the way they did, and then focus on how it fares in the “real world.”

Marc Okrand is a linguist whose career has been dedicated to documentation of extinct Native American languages, development of language technologies, and the creation of Klingon and other constructed languages. He devised the dialogue and coached the actors speaking Klingon in Star Trek III: The Search For Spock, Star Trek V: The Final Frontier, Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country, and Star Trek Into Darkness. In addition, he created the Vulcan dialogue for Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan and Star Trek III, and both Vulcan and Romulan dialogue for 2009’s Star Trek. He also created the Atlantean language for the animated feature Atlantis: The Lost Empire.

Dr. Okrand holds a Ph.D. in linguistics from UC Berkeley; his dissertation constructed a grammar of Mutsun, an extinct Ohlonean language formerly spoken in central California. Following a postdoctoral fellowship at the Smithsonian Institution, he spent 34 years at the National Captioning Institute, managing the closed captioning of television programs. He is a member of the board of directors of the theater company WSC Avant Bard in Arlington, VA. In addition to his published work on Klingon, he has written on linguistics and closed captioning for several journals and anthologies.

Workshop on November 7th: Discourse Analysis in Medical Market Research

This week we welcome two MLC alumnae, Carolyn Reed and Kathryn Ricknor (MLC ’12) back to the Hilltop!

Topic: Discourse Analysis in Medical Market Research
Time, date, and location: Friday November 7th, 1-2:15pm, Poulton Hall 230


Join Carolyn Reed and Kathryn Ticknor, 2012 MLC alumnae, for an interactive workshop on physician-patient interaction. Kathryn and Carolyn will discuss ways in which they lend their linguistic expertise to the fields of healthcare communication and medical market research. Participants will have the opportunity to delve into global in-office recordings in order to test various linguistic and ethnographic research methods and identify key patterns of meaning. Finally, the group will brainstorm ways to turn qualitative findings into actionable insights for a broader audience of stakeholders. Q&A to follow.

Carolyn Reed and Kathryn Ticknor are Senior Analysts in Linguistic Insights and Analytics at Verilogue, Inc, in Horsham, PA, where they conduct qualitative, interview- and interaction-based research in clinical healthcare settings. Carolyn and Kathryn graduated from the MLC in 2012.

Hope to see you there!

MLC Open House: September 26th

If you are interested in linguistics, interaction, and culture and want to find a grad program tailored to your professional and academic needs, the MLC might just be for you!

Please join us for the first MLC Open House of the 2014-2015 academic year. The Open House will be held at 3-4pm, September 26th 2014, in Poulton Hall 255, on the Georgetown campus. More information about the event can be found here.

Not sure what an Open House is like? This look back at the Summer 2012 Open House is a great place to start!

Current MLCers and alumni will be on hand to share their experiences with the program, and the director will provide useful admissions information and tips.

RSVP for the Open House by filling out this form:
. Please contact Dr. Anastasia Nylund at if you have any additional questions.

We hope to see you on the 26th!

Current MLC Events: Fall 2014

This fall, we are joined by linguists and other practitioners with experience in a variety of fields, including business management and operations, market research, applied sociolinguistic research, and language construction. Join us as we learn from these diverse practitioners who all share a linguistic lens on the problems at hand in their work. Please join us for engaging conversations and a celebration of linguistics across professional fields!

When, where, how? All talks will take place in 230 Poulton Hall (1421 37th St NW, Washington DC 20057) on the Fridays listed below. Time: 1pm-2:15pm.

September 19th: Ralitsa Mileva – Principal, Organizational Change Management at MITRE

A sociolinguistics PhD and MBA, Ralitsa has years of experience in management consulting, marketing communication, and change management. She will join us to talk about the field of change management and how her linguistics background has helped her succeed in a demanding, highly interactive career. Abstract forthcoming.

October 10th: Camilla Vasquez – Associate Professor of Applied Linguistics at University of South Florida

In this interactive presentation, Camilla Vásquez demonstrates how corpus-based approaches can be productively complemented with more in-depth qualitative techniques for analyzing online discourse. Focusing on linguistic data from online consumer reviews (collected from sites such as TripAdvisor, Amazon, Yelp and others), participants are guided through an exploration of various types of evaluative resources. Among the topics addressed are how to use concordance information to answer empirical questions about this (and other) online genre(s), as well as the types of discourse features that are more amenable to other forms of analysis.

November 7th: Kathryn Ticknor and Carolyn Reed – Senior Analysts (Linguistic Insights) at Verilogue, Inc.

We welcome two MLC alumnae back to the department for an interactive workshop on interactional analysis of physician-patient interaction as a key component of market research for the pharmaceutical industry. Abstract forthcoming.

November 21st: Marc Okrand – Linguist, Creator/Discoverer of Klingon

Creating a grammar of Mutsun (an extinct Ohlonean language formerly spoken in central California) as part of his PhD work at University of California, Berkeley; formalizing the structure of the Klingon language of Star Trek; developing new technologies for closed captioning at the National Captioning Institute – Marc’s career as a linguist spans a wide range of settings, industries, and projects. Join us as we learn from Marc about the meaning of being a linguist across disciplines.

Also this fall, we will welcome Rob Humphrey, Senior Manager, Content Marketing and Talent Solutions at LinkedIn, to the MLC. Rob will share his expertise on getting the most out of LinkedIn in your career search. Date and abstract: TBA.

Have you marked your calendar for the 3rd Annual MLC Career Expo on April 1st?

The Career Exploration Expo will be held Tuesday, April 1st from 6:00 – 7:30pm in Poulton Hall 230. Get more details on the event at the link above, and for questions email Anna Marie Trester at


Current MLC Events: Spring 2014

storytelling workshop

The Spring 2014 line up of MLC guest speakers showcases a group of professionals using their language expertise in areas ranging from voice recognition to public radio to consulting and beyond. Join us as they visit the MLC to talk to us about how they do what they do with language. (Download the PDF of the spring MLC speakers here).


Friday, Jan 24th – 1 – 2:15 pm, Poulton 230

Jermay JamsuVoice User Interface Designer, Nuance Communications

Jermay Jamsu’s work for Nuance Communications helps to power the development of voice recognition technology, drawing from linguistics to create the platforms behind human-computer interaction. A Georgetown linguistics Ph.D., Jermay brings to his current work his dissertation research into language variation and change.


Thursday, February 6  5:30 pm , Poulton 230

Engaging NPR: three perspectives

Join us as panelists Natalie Schilling, Carole Sargent, and Alexandra Botti discuss their experiences with NPR, from being on-air guests to working alongside show producers. We welcome anyone interested in thinking and learning a bit about public radio, as well as those simply interested in an engaging discussion about language and the media.

Please note that due to illness, our originally-scheduled speaker for this day has been cancelled. We look forward to having Grant Barrettlexicographer, radio host, journalist, public speaker  to the MLC soon for a rescheduled talk! Stay tuned.


Tuesday, Feb 25th – 5 pm, Poulton 230

Christopher PhippsStaff Scientist, Strategic Analysis Incorporated

Christopher Phipps works in Natural Language Processing research and development. He currently uses his linguistic expertise as a scientific adviser (SETA) to The Metaphor Program within the US Government’s Intelligence Advanced Research Projects Activity (IARPA). (For more on Christopher’s work, see his page on the MLC website.)


Friday, March 21st – 1 pm (as part of prospective student day – location to be announced)

Julie Solomon, Founder and Principal of J. Solomon Consulting, LLC

Julie Solomon is the founder of a consulting firm specializing in program evaluation, where she has directed numerous evaluation, training, and research and development projects across behavioral health and social issue areas. She brings to her work a Stanford Ph.D. in linguistics, for which she studied the social context of language variation in Yucatán, Mexico.


Friday, April 25th – 3:30-5 pm, Poulton 230 (part of the Ling. Dept. Speaker Series)

Julie Sweetland – Frameworks Institute

Details to come.


Monday, April 28th – 6:30-8 pm, Poulton 230

Grant Barrettlexicographer, radio host, journalist, public speaker

Grant Barrett of NPR’s “A Way with Words” joins us for an evening about language and linguistics in public media, life as a lexicographer and public speaker, and more.




Past MLC Events: Fall 2013


Past MLC Events: Spring 2013

Other Past Events:

Fall 2012
Spring 2012
Fall 2011
Spring 2011