The semi-annual Language and International Health Symposium provides a forum to discuss and increase awareness of international health issues, emphasizing interrelations with language, culture, interdisciplinary studies, and artistic creation. Medical professionals, faculty, students and alumni can present their research on health-related topics, especially those that impact minorities, immigrant communities and developing countries in a global economy.
Daniel Holcombe, MA, currently teaches Spanish at Arizona State University, where he is a doctoral student in Spanish and a Teaching and Research Associate. His focus includes literature, culture studies, and cultural brokering. He also teaches medical interpretation and Spanish for the medical community at Mountain Area Health Education Center (MAHEC) in Asheville, NC and at Wake Forest School of Medicine (NWAHEC) in Winston-Salem, NC. He is an experienced assessor and administrator of medical and social service interpreters representing 16 languages. Mr. Holcombe first received constructive interpreter training in 2006, after interpreting for family and friends for over 20 years. He enjoys facilitating communication, bridging cultures, and encouraging interpreter training and professional development, fully realizing that, while good intentions and bilingual skills are excellent points of departure, interpreter training is the first essential step towards ensuring consistent and equal medical treatment for limited English proficient (LEP) populations in NC and across the U.S. With his thumb on the pulse of national interpreter certification movements, Mr. Holcombe served as Chairperson, and later as President, of the North Carolina Professional Interpreting Association (NCPIA) for four years, seeking education and awareness for citizens of NC via open communication among providers, interpreters, and LEP patients. He worked extensively with the University of North Carolina Greensboro - Center for New North Carolinians (UNCG CNNC) on developing interpreter certification testing in NC as well as editing course materials used in interpretation courses taught at NC AHECs. When not in Arizona, Mr. Holcombe continues to edit and teach existing interpreter training, in addition to writing new course syllabi for Health & Human Services interpretation, thereby facilitating professional development and preparation for national foreign language certification.
Carlos Valencia, Director of Centro Cultural de Estudios Culturales (CINECU), is a native of Oviedo, Spain, but he has spent the last twenty years of his professional life in the United States. There, he received his doctorate in 19th-century Spanish literature from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill before teaching at Wake Forest University and the University of Richmond. Among Carlos’s professional interests are the application of new technology to Spanish language instruction and the incorporation of volunteer work into curriculums as a sociolinguistic and cultural learning tool.