For the first time at Swarthmore, simultaneous Spanish translation will be provided during this year's baccalaureate address and commencement ceremony. Though the need among the 366 graduates is not expected to be overwhelming, Vice President for College and Community Relations Maurice Eldridge '61 says offering the service is a reflection of the College's values.
"It was a reasonable extension of services to make such a significant event in the lives of our students and their families more accessible to them," he told the Associated Press.
Deivid Rojas '11, a history major who grew up in Miami, Fla., approached Eldridge with the idea for translation and says his father is among several relatives he expects to use the service.
"He's someone that's not perfectly comfortable with English," says Rojas, whose family immigrated to the U.S from Colombia when he was seven. "I don't think he'd be able to enjoy it as much."
Since the audio equipment has the capacity for several channels, languages such as Korean or Chinese could be added in the future. The College will also continue to offer American Sign Language interpreters.