25 years of Danish language courses

Copenhagen Language Center celebrates 25 years

During the employment interview for my first job at a language centre in 1995, they made it very clear that the job might not last long.

“Take it as a challenge, as long as it lasts – perhaps we’ll only need you for a year or two – maybe more, maybe less. It’s a very uncertain line of work...”

That’s essentially what they said when I tried to explain that I wanted to build a career in teaching Danish to adult immigrants.

Nearly 23 years have passed since then, and colleagues and language centres around me are now marking 25- and even 35-year anniversaries.

Copenhagen Language Center is celebrating 25 years in its current incarnation, with roots dating all the way back to the 1980s under changing legislation and ownership.

Copenhagen Language Center has been part of the fascinating history of Danish courses for adult immigrants. In spite of developments and frequent changes, a political consensus has emerged in Denmark that immigrants should learn Danish to ensure they become a part of society and are able to obtain employment and education.

The language centres have often found themselves in the eye of the hurricane, as Denmark’s heated public debate about foreigners and immigrants has raged around them.

In many ways, the language centres have mirrored developments in society. The consequences of international crises, immigration patterns, refugee flows, labour market trends and immigration policy have been directly reflected in the language centres’ activities.

Through the years, Copenhagen Language Center has been one of the most prominent language centres in shaping developments in the field. In fact, many of the teaching materials and educational ideas adopted over the years have come from Copenhagen Language Center’s teachers.

I would like to take this opportunity to thank all of our students, staff and partners over the past 25 years. We look forward to continue playing an instrumental role in the field of “Danish as a second language”.

Principal Poul Neergaard

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