Turlock High School junior Ariadly Gutiérrez said that she expects more doors to open for her after she was officially awarded the Seal of Multilingual Proficiency on Wednesday evening for her expertise in both English and Spanish.
“This means a lot to me, especially because it takes me a step further,” said Gutiérrez. “It was a goal I was able to accomplish and it made my parents proud, which is something that always feels great.”
Gutiérrez was one of 221 students who were awarded this year with the seal, which is an award that is made available to high school juniors and seniors that recognizes proficiency in English and at least one other world language. This achievement can be used to the students’ benefit on college admissions, scholarship applications and job resumes.
“I feel like this will open more doors in the future for me,” said Gutiérrez.
The Seal of Multilingual Proficiency is offered through the Stanislaus County Office of Education’s Instructional Support Services Division and local school districts. SCOE was the first county office of education in the nation to adopt the program.
“Being proficient in multiple languages enhances a student’s education and value in the market place,” said Superintendent of Schools Tom Changnon. “Our economy is tied to that of other nations, and Californians who can participate across international borders bring strength and potential to this State’s global enterprises.”
In order to be awarded with the Seal of Multilingual Proficiency, students must complete a highly rigorous process to demonstrate proficiency in languages. This includes submitting a LinguaFolio, which is a structured portfolio submitted by the student, being interviewed in English and the target language and providing an on-demand writing sample in the target language.
“It is important to learn more than one language,” said Gutiérrez. “Just in the United States, there are a variety of languages and being able to communicate with another percentage of people is very important. You can build new relationships and trust.”