The Indiana University Hamilton Lugar School of Global and International Studies has received funding from the U.S. Department of Defense for its Language Training Center program. The center, which was established in 2019, provides language and culture learning to members of the U.S. Special Operations Command and Indiana National Guard.

The $1.26 million grant expands on a $970,000 award that was used to create the program, which was from the Institute of International Education from the Defense Language and National Security Education Office. 

“This extension is both an honor and a validation not only of Indiana University’s commitment to language and cultural fluency but also the strength of our faculty’s expertise and ingenuity,” said former Ambassador Lee Feinstein, founding dean of the Hamilton Lugar School. “We look forward to bolstering our partnership with 1st Special Forces Command and developing new and innovative approaches to language instruction.”

The center will use the expanded funding to add new teachers in French, Russian, German, Spanish and Portugese. IU is also partnering with the 1st Special Forces Command to advance software for a virtual reality language training tool.

“I have watched our U.S. Special Forces work with host nation militaries around the world, and their mastery of both the language and cultures of those host nations gives them great credibility and quickly builds important relationships,” said retired U.S. Air Force Gen. Gene Renuart, president of the Renuart Group. “It is great to see the Hamilton Lugar School and the Language Training Center be such an integral part of our nation’s outreach to partners.”