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ASL | Applied Linguistics | Chinese | Classics | Comparative Literature
ESL & ITA | French | German | Italian | Japanese | Korean | Russian


Department of Classical & Modern Languages & Literatures Named Winner of the Teaching Academy's 2021 Departmental Excellence in Teaching Award

The Departmental Excellence in Teaching Award recognizes an academic unit or program where “teaching culture” exists that reflects commitment to students, makes teaching a high priority, and facilitates teaching excellence.  The award carries a $25,000 prize.

This is a wonderful achievement in recognition of the contributions of CMLL faculty and staff make to the teaching and learning mission at Texas Tech.  The award was formally presented on May 3, 2021, in a virtual award ceremony.


Celebration Give Away!

In celebration of winning the TTU Departmental Excellence in Teaching Award and CMLL decided to share the joy with our students. On our Instagram account, CMLL held a giveaway with some wonderful prizes including Beats Solo Pro Wireless Noise Cancelling On-Ear Headphones (valued at $300). Other winners received TTU St. Patrick's Day gear (shirts & hats) and other cool prizes!  The Give Away was a success with 500 participants.


The grand prize, a pair of beats headphones, went to Aliyah Efotte, a student at Texas Tech studying Humanities with minors in French and Chemistry! She is a part of the Honors College and a member of the Delta Gamma Fraternity.

NEW! Works-in-Progress Workshops


Strategic Growth Team Initiatives

CMLL is career-driven and has created a strategic growth team spearheaded by Katherine Brooke and Linley Melhem to find better ways to help students make connection between what they are learning in language classes and their future careers.   A CMLL Careers Page was created to provide faculty with some wonderful resources which includes the CMLL Career Development Checklist.  Social Media (Facebook and Instagram) serves place where faculty can keep up with the latest materials to engage students and faculty.  Two roundtable discussions were executed during the semester to refresh faculty with two CMLL Roundtable sessions.

CMLL Roundtable: Workshopping the Career-focused Syllabus took place on February 24. Dr. Belinda Kleinhans, Associate Chair of CMLL, informed participants on the importance of transferrable skills with presentations of examples of transferrable skills in course objectives/projects from Dr. Alec Cattell, Dr. Raychel Vasseur and Dr. Linda Gosner.  For those interested in rethinking the rich skills students are learning in language courses, Dr. Alec Cattell challenged them to go beyond “the 4 skills of reading, writing, listening, and speaking in language learning by introducing a shift in focus to include six notions including language learning vs. Languaging, intercultural competence vs. Intercultural being, multiliteracies: multimodal forms of linguistic expression, interpersonal communication, interpretive communication, presentational communication.

Website Redesign Project

The CMLL website is undergoing a major overhaul. The new web site features an easy-to-use navigation menu and a fresh design that students in focus groups consistently described as "warm and inviting". When the redesign is complete, the web site will better demonstrate who we are as a department. Take a look!

Dr. Alec Cattell, Director of Texas Tech Ethics and Diversity Initiatives


Congratulations to Dr. Alec Cattell on his new role in the Teaching Learning Professional Development Center as Director of Ethics and Diversity Initiatives, starting June 15th.  As demonstrated during his tenure in CMLL, this position will allow Alec to use his skills and abilities along with his boundless transformative energy to advocate for ethics and diversity in a central role at Texas Tech University.  Although he will still be teaching for CMLL in a reduced manner, Alec's creative prowess will be greatly missed in CMLL. Alec leaves a tremendous legacy in this department, and he will continue to impact this university with his always positive attitude and his deep commitment to ethics and diversity. Alec's new position leads him to a new place of service within the Texas Tech family starting this summer, but he will always remain part of the CMLL family.

CMLL 2020 Graduates Celebrate Delayed Commencement

Texas Tech Graduate School held a special face-to-face commencement ceremony for graduates who were unable to participate in a graduation ceremony due to COVID-19 in May and December 2020.  Delighted graduate students reveled in all the pomp and circumstance of a high-tech commencement at the Jones AT& T Stadium on May7, 2021.

CMLL was represented well by the following participants:

Maria Luz Bateman, Spanish Ph.D, December 2020
Verónica Cora-Castillo, BA Spanish, May 2020
Yamato Kitahashi, MA Languages & Cultures-Applied Linguistics, May 2020
Karina Oliveira de Paula, MA Languages & Cultures-Applied Linguistics, May 2020
Robin Tieperman, MA Spanish, May 2020

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Maria Luz Bateman Karina Oliveira de Paula Yamato Kitahashi

Not pictured: Veronica Cora-Castillo, Robin Tieperman

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ASL assisted the Tech Deaf Culture Alliance with a fundraiser on March 23 at Panda Express, who donated 20% of its proceeds to the alliance.

Applied Linguistics

A spring day in the park with a potluck picnic shared with friends and colleagues took place on April 3 at Maxey Park; this event was hosted by the Graduate Students Applied Linguistics (GSAL).


2021-2023 RS Hartman Scholarship

Jude Mensah


Some students in CHIN1502 Beginning Chinese (2) and CHIN4301 Chinese Characters and Calligraphy learned to make Chinese dumplings at the end of the semester. In the party, students played different Chinese games, sang Chinese songs, recited a Chinese poem, played Charades, and kicked the Chinese shuttlecocks!


The students in CHIN4301 Chinese Characters and Calligraphy made three presentations to show their calligraphy works on the Little Seal Style (an archaic form of Chinese calligraphy which was standardized and promulgated as a national standard by the first emperor of Qin Dynasty around 220 BC), the Clerical Style (another archaic style of Chinese calligraphy which has a history about 2,000 years), and the Regular Style in the semester. The students wrote the wisdom ancient Chinese quotes in the different styles and presented their deep study on the history of the quotes, explained why they selected them and how the quotes inspired them. They communicated with the words and sentences thousands of year ago and resonated the calls from the history. There is no border of the wisdom quotes by the moral models, no matter they are in Chinese or in English because they all gave us power and motivation, encouraged us to keep going on, to conquer the difficulties, to chase our dreams, be grit, be honesty, and be yourself.  This course taught the etymology of Chinese Characters, the calligraphy knowledge, and Chinese history and culture.


The students in CHIN1502 Beginning Chinese (2) had a Chinese culture recital to review the Chinese classical poems, songs, and fan dancing they learned in this semester! During the recital, the students also wore the Chinese traditional and ethnical groups costume to present the Chinese costume culture. The costume includes Chinese Tibetan clothing for women and men, Chinese Miao minority clothing for women and men, Chinese Han clothing for women and men, Taiwan Gaoshan minority clothing for women and men, and Qipao.


The students in CHIN1502 flied kites on campus. Flying kits is one of the traditional Chinese outdoor activities which were invented in the early Warring States Period (475-221 B.C.)


Three students majoring and minoring in Chinese, Sophia Persad, Jazmine Good, and Brittany Ramos, shot a video singing a Chinese song, 寄明月Send to the Bright Moon, to participate in the Cheng & Tsui Karaoke Contest which is the US national contest for all Chinese language learners. Listen on Youtube

The students in CHIN1502 celebrated Chinese New Year at the instructor, Mrs. Yang's home by hanging lanterns, putting on Spring Couplets and paper cuttings, making dumplings, enjoying the tea, received red pockets, and learned how to say new year greetings from a song on the Spring Festival Gala.

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The students in CHIN3305 Chinese Cinema and CHIN1501 Beginning Chinese celebrated Chinese Spring Festival by writing the character Fu 福 lucky and decorating the classrooms by the traditional Chinese decors.



The Archaeological Institute of America-Lubbock branch Spring 2021 Lectures:
The Annual AIA Joukowsky Lecture on February 10, 2021
Fête champêtre: Ritual Consumption in the Greek Countryside - Dr. Catherine Morgan
The Cost of Invisible Labor in Archaeology - Dr. Allison Mickel on March 4, 2021
Asserting Ownership: Knossos and the Case against Sir Arthur Evans - Dr. Aimee Genova on March 23, 2021
Community Formation and Identity in the Ancient Mediterranean - Dr. Catherine Steidl on April 22, 2021

The Classics Society

The Classics Society members enjoyed an engaging virtual lecture with our own Dr. Christopher Witmore on a comparison of fast and slow governments through Argos and Pyrrhus on March 23rd.  Interested students participated in the Ancient Greek Info Session and Gathering on March 24 for a Q&A with faculty and students on learning Ancient Greek at Texas Tech.   At the April 19th virtual meeting of the Tech Classical Society, they spoke with Kathleen Loyd, Space Policy Advisor in the Department of Defense and the US Space Force. She discussed how she went from an archaeology student to saving us from hostile aliens. Not sure what to do with your life? She is proof that the sky is NOT the limit.

Texas Tech University's Classics Program virtually presented: Interplay of Spectacle in the Roman Arena, an Undergraduate Research Conference on Saturday, April 17th

The Roman Arena is a space of dynamic interplay, in which multiple sights, sounds and smells, competing points-of-view, and individual and collective positionings, all continually impinge upon, and negotiate with, each other. In this conference, we aim to bring together a diverse group of treatments of such matters as the gladiatorial munus, wild animal venationes, executions and other spectacles, focusing upon the bodies, gazes and movements of the arena's participants—gladiators, venatores and damnati; emperors and other editores; and the multifarious spectators who flock to watch them. The conference was especially interested in the period 250 BCE-250 CE. Featured respondents: Dr. David Larmour (Paul Whitfield Horn Professor of Classics at TTU) and Ms. Cait Mongrain (Doctoral candidate at Princeton, TTU MA ‘15, BA ‘12)

Spring 2021 Classics Graduate Workshops

These virtual workshops were run by and for the TTU Classics MA cohort, in conjunction with the Classics faculty.

2020-21 Workshop Coordinators: Jacob Bowe, Emma Schneider

February 9 – Thesis Planning 
February 23 – The Thesis Writing Process 
March 9 – Abstract Round Table or Conference Paper Reads 
March 23 – PhD Application Process  
April 6 – Abstract Round Table or Conference Paper Reads

2021-2022 Scholarship Awards

The Howard and Fotini Perlmutter Scholarship: Nathan Gring
The Lioned A. Jirgensons Latin Scholarship: Noel Bartniski
Classical Association of the Middle West and South (CAMWS)Institutional Member Student Award: Calvin Birchall-Roman
Society for Classical Studies (SCS) Outstanding Achievement Award: Chloe Morris and Mell Finerock
Pickford Scholarship: Patrick Mullins

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Comparative Literature

53rd Comparative Literature Symposium took place virtually on April 16-17. The theme was Global Vietnam War Literature and Culture: Representation, Postmemory, and the Changing Geopolitics of the Transpacific.

Keynote Speakers
Dr. Long T. Bui, Associate Professor of Global and International Studies, the University of California at Irvine   
Dr. Patricia Pelley, Associate Professor of History, Texas Tech University 
Dr. Cathy J. Schlund-Vials, Professor of English and Asian American Studies, the University of Texas at Austin.

Special Guest Speaker
Ms. Callie Wright, Education Director, Vietnam Veterans Memorial Fund

The Humanities Center at Texas Tech Medieval and Renaissance Studies Virtual Symposium

Three faculty members represented CMLL at The Humanities Center at Texas Tech Medieval and Renaissance Studies virtual symposium, “Arts, Histories, Literatures of the world, 500-1500 CE on April 24, 2021.  Dr. Ashley Voeks (French) chaired a panel. Veronica Cora-Castillo (Spanish) and Dr. John Beusterien participated in a roundtable discussion and present papers.  The day-long even was hosted the day-long event on Zoom featuring a keynote address, “Teaching the Literatures and Cultures of the Global Middle Ages,” by Dr. Geraldine Heng of the University of Texas at Austin.

ESL and ITA Program

English in the Evenings

This spring, adults in the Lubbock community worked with skilled instructors to grow their communication skills in four areas: reading, writing, listening, speaking.

There two sessions of six-week-long classes that met twice weekly throughout spring.  Reading and Writing classes were held January 27 to March 8, 2021 and Listening and Speaking Classes took place March 24 to May 3, 2021. Upon successful completion of each course, students earn a certificate of completion.

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French Club kicked off weekly Conversation Hour on February 23 and continued throughout the semester while practicing social distancing.


The Texas Tech French program was selected to host the next iteration of the Tournées Film Festival, sponsored by the FACE Foundation and the Cultural Services of the French Embassy in the United States, with additional support from the Humanities Center at TTU and the Department of Classical & Modern Languages and Literatures.


As part of the French Cultures Festival coordinated by the Cultural Service of the French Embassy in Houston, the entirely virtual event took place from March 12 to April 21 featuring six French-Francophone films followed by Zoom panels with both Texas Tech and outside scholars leading discussions directly after the film screenings.

Bruno Penteado presented a lecture titled, “Voltaire, Derrida, and the Ruses” on January 27, 2021

2021-2022 Scholarship Awards

Beatrice Alexander Fellowship: Michaela de la Houssaye
James Pickford Memorial Scholarship: Jacob Gilmore
Beatrice Alexander Scholarships: Sydnee Cooper, Daniela Mambe, Emily Vân Dôn
Christine de Pizan Scholarhips: Lauren Martin, Ashley Anderson, Veronica Moreno, Sophia Omueti, Barima Antwi-Boasiako, Katie McQuien, Lauren Brewer
Wendell E. McClendon French Scholarships: Julien Lévêque
Beatrice W. Alexander Scholarships: Allie Thompson, Elizabeth Lopez
Lorum Stratton Study Abroad Scholarship: Ejura Unwuchola

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German Club met virtually through March 17 when social distancing protocols were lightened.  Students began meeting outside for the remainder of the semester in the designated area between the SUB and the library. This face-to-face opportunity provided a place to chat and carry out activities.


2021-2022 Scholarship Awards

Theodor W. Alexander Scholarship - Sarah Costanza
Theodor W. Alexander Scholarship - Anna Jordan
Theodor W. Alexander Scholarship - Briana Gary


The Ateneo Veneto hosted an online book discussion, “Omaggio a Ezio Gribaudo / Homage to Ezio Gribaudo” on January 18, 2021, about the most recent e-book on artist Ezio Gribaudo by Victoria Surliuga, an associate professor of Italian at Texas Tech University, on his 92nd birthday, January 10 and the release of a documentary that chronicles his life. Surliuga's bilingual book is entitled “Omaggio a Ezio Gribaudo / Homage to Ezio Gribaudo” and was published as e-book by the Texas Tech University Libraries and the online journal ytali.com, and is available at no cost in the Texas Tech University Libraries Open Repositories. The e-book brings together Surliuga's writings on Gribaudo published between 2014 and 2020 in various venues such as “L'Osservatore Romano,” Edizioni Gli Ori, Ekecheiria, and others.

This online presentation was promoted by the Ateneo Veneto to honor the award-winning work, exhibitions and important artistic collaborations that Gribaudo, painter, sculptor, graphic artist, art publisher and art collector, has done in Venice beginning in 1961 with his first exhibition of the “flani” took place at the Galleria il Cavallino. Gribaudo worked extensively with Peggy Guggenheim on the catalogs of her Collection and planned a retrospective of the Peggy Guggenheim Collection at the Galleria Civica d'Arte Moderna in Turin (1976).  Last year (2019-2020), his exhibition “Itinerari: New York, Venezia, Torino” (curated by Stefano Cecchetto) was held at the Palazzo Contarini del Bovolo.

Featured speakers:

  • Ambassador Gianpaolo Scarante, President of the Ateneo Veneto
  • Victoria Surliuga, author, associate professor of Italian at Texas Tech University
  • Artist Ezio Gribaudo
  • Paola Gribaudo, President of the Accademia Albertina di Belle Arti di Torino
  • Janis Elliott, associate professor of art history at Texas Tech University
  • Guido Moltedo, journalist, publisher, and editor of the online journal ytali.com


On February 22, 2021 (1 pm CST) the Italian Program at Texas Tech University presented “An Encounter with Italian Filmmaker Matteo Vicino” via zoom.

Matteo Vicino is an award-winning Italian filmmaker and is one of the most promising voices in Italian filmmaking. He has written and directed "Lovers" (2017), "Outing: Fidanzati per sbaglio" [Outing: Accidentally Engaged] (2013), and "Young Europe" (2012).

Matteo Vicino lives and works in Bologna, Italy. “Lovers,” Vicino's third film, won the Lisbon International Film Festival 2017 (Best Feature Film), and was also nominated for Best Feature Film in the Crystal Palace London International Film Festival.

In 2017, it was also presented at the Scottsdale International Film Festival, the Valley International Film Festival, the Buffalo International Film Festival, the Fort Lauderdale International Film Festival, and the Silicon Valley International Film Festival.

“Lovers” is available in the US through Google Play, iTunes, and Amazon Prime Video.

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Setsubun matsuri, a Japanese festival to celebrate the beginning of spring.  The celebration is  meant to chase bad energy out and let luck into your lives by throwing beans at Oni demons. The Japanese club which included students, Japanese guests from Lubbock Japanese community and international students, participated in this annual festival on February 5th  in the International Cultural Center.


Learning to write Japanese in the beautiful art of calligraphy, one must practice to perfect this form of writing.   Students in JAPN 1501 begin learning this art of calligraphy.


Practice continues in JAPN 1502, 2301 and 2302.  This spring, students in JAPN 2302 enjoyed writing their favorite Kanji (Chinese Character) using authentic calligraphy kits.



Korean Cinema will be the topic of CMLL 2306 Introduction to World Cinema during the 2021 Summer I.  This course will explore Korean culture through the visual representation of film and television and fulfill Language Culture & Philosophy and Multicultural core requirements.


Texas Tech Russian Club renamed!

On February 15th, the club held its first meeting under the new name, Tech Russian and Slavic Association (TRSA) government.

During the unprecedented storm that blanketed Texas in February, faculty and students made the most of it by meeting via Zoom during university closures.

Russian classes decided to “Beat the Freeze” in contrast to “beat the heat” that is commonly used in this area of high summer temperatures by creating a game by the same title to lighten the burdens felt by the frigid winter storm.


Students met on Zoom donning their sunny wares and exemplifying sunny attitudes. This game provided a perfect platform for discussion on how to survive the cold, what to wear, and how to take care of each other in extremely cold temperatures. Russia is known for its wintry weather with subzero temperatures, so students were introduced to how Russians prepare and survival tactics for the long winter months. What a wonderful creative way to offer emotional support to all students and especially to those affected by electric and water outages and family struggles.


On April 17, the Tech Russian and Slavic Association participated in a real-time walk around famous Red Square led by Marina and Alex. Students of Russian learned some interesting facts and enjoyed seeing Russians out and about. Students also stopped in GUM, the famous state department store for a quick glimpse and walked along Nikolskaya Street. They were able to catch a glimpse of the awakening spring and catch a little spring-fever like the Muscovites who are emerging from a chilly winter.


2020-2021 Club Officers

President: Linka Aguirre
VP: Anna Jordan 
Treasurer: Riley Adams

Inductions – Dobro Slovo and American Council of Teachers of Russian Scholar Laureate

The Slavic Honor Society, Dobro Slovo, inducted three new members in May.

Linka Aguirre
Elizabeth Pickell
Jacob Garcia

Alicia Blackburn is named 2021 Texas Tech's American Council of Teachers of Russian Scholar Laureate.

Movie Night hosted by Alamo Film Club!


Russian Cuisine

April 21, Irina Drigalenko presented a lecture on Russian cuisine to TRSA and guests from students of other languages because food unites people. Drigalenko introduced them to the most popular dishes of Russian cuisine, which are diverse and derive from the different multi-ethnic expanse of Russia. Russian cuisine keeps one warm during cold winter months and aids in keeping one refreshed on hot summer days. Even though unique to foreign eyes, food in Russia is usually made with simple ingredients, but is surprisingly comforting.  In addition to learning about cuisine, students learned some cooking vocabulary and special techniques to successfully make Russian blinis.  All this talk about food made everyone hungry but due to a virtual meeting, the usual food tasting event was unable to take place.

Blini Contest

The TRSA officers organized a Blini Contest and winners were announced on April 30th.  Students submitted their entries the week after the Russian Cuisine lecture. Students were amazingly creative!


Miranda and Ryan made blinis together as a team, so it was double fun for them.

Ava used a unique recipe, she loves to cook Russian food.

Nick's blinis were perfect; he was so enthusiastic about the whole process. 

Benancio used the original recipe and accomplished making blinis that were evenly cooked and so yummy looking.

Amanda demonstrated the process of making blinis in her photo-report, and her comments are great: “Also, I made the rest of the blini batter this morning, it might be one of my new favorite meals. “

Victoria used the original recipe and made delicious blinis.

Winners of the Blini Contest:

All entries were exceptional and choosing winners was tough!!
First place: Nick (he won an English-Russian keyboard)
Second: Miranda and Ryan

End of Semester Party and Best Student Awards


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A Mystery Book Talk with author Manuel Ramos


On May 20th, Tattered Cover bookstore welcomed author Manuel Ramos on Thursday May 20th at 6pm MT in a livestream event to discuss his book Angels in the Wind with CMLL Dr. Jorge Zamora, Associate Professor of Spanish.

Manuel Ramos is the author of eleven novels and a short story collection. He has received the Colorado Book Award (twice), the Chicano/Latino Literary Award, the Top Hand Award from the Colorado Authors League, and Honorable Mentions from the Latino International Book Awards. His first novel, The Ballad of Rocky Ruiz, was a finalist for the Edgar® award. My Bad: A Mile High Noir was a Shamus finalist. He is a co-founder of and regular contributor to the award-winning Internet magazine La Bloga, which deals with Latino literature, culture, news and opinion.

XXII Annual Virtual Céfiro Conference on Latin American and Iberian Languages, Literatures and Culture

The 2021 Virtual Céfiro Conference explored the concepts of teaching, education, professionalization and practice in the academic disciplines of Iberian languages, Luso-Hispanic Linguistics, Literature and Cultural Studies on April 15-17 at Texas Tech University.


Presentations by Spanish graduate students are listed in the Academic Excellence section.

Paola Guerrero-Rodriguez presented a lecture titled, “Computer-Meditated Interactions: Discussing Implications in the Cultural Identities of Spanish Heritage Speakers on February 3, via Zoom.

Special panels on careers by our own CMLL alumna, featuring Iñaki Prádanos, Heath Wing, Silvia Pearl, Vicente Iranzo, Ana Padial

Growth of Spanish Foundations Program

Beginning in fall 2021, CMLL will benefit from additional capacity in the Spanish Foundations program. The available seats in the beginning and intermediate Spanish classes will more than double, helping students complete their language requirement on time and allowing more freshmen into the Spanish program.

Coffee and Scones


On May 14, the Spanish program hosted a come and go Coffee and Scones event in Wagner Park to honor the 2021 Spanish graduates.  Faculty shared memories with students and families during this special commemoration of their studies at Texas Tech Department of Classical & Modern Languages & Literatures.


Scholarship Awards

James Pickford: Tyler Mullin

TTU AH Douglas: Yazarei Bazaldua, Aiime Duarte Yazarei Bazaldua, Taylor Clark

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Classical & Modern Languages & Literatures

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    CMLL Building, 2906 18th St, Lubbock, TX 79409
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