Three members of the Minnesota 2.0 team Justin Schell, Andy Wilhide, and Mustafa Jumaleparticipated in this year's World Language Day, a yearly event that brings high school students to the University of Minnesota to explore the languages and cultures of the world.
We led two classes with students from a variety of Twin Cities metro schools, in which we discussed the project and explored an early version of the Minnesota 2.0 digital archive. The students learned about how language is a form of identity formation, and some of the specific debates surrounding language as discussed on the website. This included debates around whether Spanglish devalued both Spanish and English, and whether someone who cannot speak Somali could actually be considered Somali. After they spent some time with the website, we had a short discussion about what they learned from their brief interaction with the site. The positive reaction from many of the students bodes well for the outreach that we have planned for the next stage of Minnesota 2.0, in which we plan on working with students from the three communities we are researching, as well as others, as they utilize the archive as well as contribute new material to the archive itself.