news briefs Intensive English Institute Launched on Lowell Campus The Intensive English Institute (IEI) has opened on the Lowell campus and provides rigorous English instruction and cultural immersion designed to foster success for non-native English speakers who wish to pursue higher education in the United States. “Our talented and hard-working ESL students deserve to have teaching and learning that will prepare them for their dreams and goals,” said Marilyn Glazer-Weisner, Coordinator, World Language Institute. “As a result, our curriculum is informed by research and results in the field of language learning, and our students will be exposed to material written by native speakers for native speakers.” The curriculum includes reading, writing, grammar, as well as speaking and listening exercises. The two-semester noncredit program runs 18 hours each week. President James C. Mabry and Karen Oster, Chairwoman of Performing Arts, accepted the MRT award. MCC Wins MRT’s First Donahue Award for Community Leadership Middlesex has been recognized as an “extraordinary” community partner by Lowell’s Merrimack Repertory Theatre (MRT). At MRT’s 2017 Set the Stage Celebration – which raised more than $100,000 for the theater’s education programs – the college was presented the newly created Donahue Award for Community Leadership. The award is named in honor of MRT founder Nancy L. Donahue. Accepting the award for the college were President James C. Mabry and Karen Oster, Chairwoman of Performing Arts. “We are very proud and honored to receive this award,” said Mabry. “At Middlesex, we are dedicated to promoting student success on – and off – the stage!” “Our mission has always included the active participation of our students in learning to engage and empower others in the community through theater,” added Oster. “Over the last two years, we have partnered with MRT so our students can be more actively involved in the creative process of work-shopping new plays and musicals.” MCC’s Theater Department has helped MRT workshop three new works: “Chill,” “Little Women Retold” and “Hurricane, The Musical,” Oster explained. “These workshops have enabled Middlesex students to take part in observing, working behind the scenes – and in the case of ‘Hurricane,’ appearing on stage.” Artwork by Yary Livan Added to Smithsonian Collections Two artworks by ceramist Yary Livan, Adjunct Professor of Art, have been added to the permanent collections of the Smithsonian Institution’s Sackler/ Freer Gallery in Washington, D.C. Elephant pot by Yary Livan. Smithsonian Curator of Ceramics Louise Cort visited the Lowell artist’s studio and selected an elephant pot and a vase to be included in the Asian art galleries’ permanent collections. Both pieces were fired in MCC’s Cambodian wood-fired kiln. Livan’s works were also featured in “The Glazed Elephant: Ceramic Traditions in Cambodia,” a recent exhibition at the Sackler Gallery exploring the ceramic tradition of the Angkor kingdom (802-1431). To celebrate his accomplishments, Livan participated in a series of public programs, including an artist talk, and ceramic workshops for adults and children at the District Clay Center, a new ceramics facility in Washington, D.C. In 2015, Livan was awarded a National Endowment for the Arts National Heritage Fellowship, the nation’s highest honor in the folk and traditional arts. He received a 2012 Massachusetts Cultural Council Artist Fellowship. 18 | Profiles