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University of Hawaii adds Tongan Language

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The University of Hawaii has expanded its language curriculum to include Tongan, the fifth Pacific language offered at its Manoa campus.

According to Letitia Hickson, Outreach Coordinator at the Center for Pacific Islands Studies at the university, the course in elementary Tongan is to begin next month.

Other Pacific languages offered by the Department of Hawaiian and Indo-Pacific Languages and Literatures at the Honolulu university include Hawaiian, Tahitian, Maori, and Samoan.

Hickson said the Center for Pacific Islands Studies was instrumental in making the offering of Tongan possible.

Some other Languages offered not already mentioned:

Burmese, Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Arabic, Cambodian (Khmer), Chamorro, Filipino, Hindi, Ilokano, Indonesian, Pali, Prakrit, Sanskrit, Thai, Tibetan, Vietnamese, classical Arabic, Asilulu, Avestan, Balinese, Javanese, Malaysian, Marquesan, Old Persian, Sudanese, Tuamotuan, French, German, Italian, Portuguese, Russian, Spanish, ancient Greek, classical Latin, etc

A few of the latter languages mentioned like Chamorro, Marquesan, Tuamotuan are also Pacific Islander languages...

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Whoa, that's a lot of languages... here in Ontario I'm pretty sure that's a lot more than what the University of Waterloo offers (my university starting this fall... and one of the most multicultural Ontarian universities); they do offer Ukrainian and I believe Polish, not on the UofHawaii list, but that's probably it. In fact I'm not sure if even the University of Toronto (largest in Canada) matches that list.

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^Well the thing thats interesting and cool about is the rare selection the main focus at the UH is many languages that are quite unique to the Pacific rim like Tahitian, Marquesan, Maori, Samoan, Tongan, Chamorro, Tuamotuan to Ilokano, etc i dont think there are too many if any in the US that offer those languages at the university level.

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But do these languages have their own departments, or is there perhaps only a single course for each of these languages? Maybe there's a unified "Hawaiian Studies" program that teaches students a bit of everything, because if not then students who don't have ancestries related to one of these languages aren't just going to pick out of a hat which ones they're going to study.

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^They are full courses, its one of the few universities in the US that offer many of these languages, but it does so because thats where most of its focus is on... the Pacific Rim region and many of the students that go to school in Hawaii come from all over the region and many Pacific Islanders also can apply for special scholarships to go to school here so you'll find many from developing countries like Papua New Guinea, Micronesia, etc

University of Hawaii:

The Department provides instruction in the languages of the Indo-Pacific area to a broad spectrum of students at the University. The coverage of these languages is unique in the United States: this is the only department in the country to offer a BA degree in Hawaiian language and Filipino Language and Literature (Filipino or Ilokano) and the only one to offer every national language of Southeast Asia, as well as classical and modern Indian languages. *and of course the other languages already mentioned.

Other languages they've been working with and are putting books together for are like:

Cham, Chuukese, Kalmyk, Kemak, Lungtu, Okinawan, Tiwa, Truku, etc

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