Stacy-Ann Brown (Associate Professor/Linguist)

This week on People Profile: Stacy-Ann Brown (Associate Professor/Linguist). Every human knows at least one language, spoken or signed. Linguistics is the science of language, including the sounds, words, and grammar rules. Words in languages are finite, but sentences are not. It is this creative aspect of human language that sets it apart from animal languages. To be able to speak more than one language is an advantage especially in this global society. This week on People Profile we welcome a professional who is a polyglot in the truest sense of the word. As an associate Professor and Language consultant, Stacy could you please describe what drives this interest in languages and to what extent is the ability to speak more than one language an advantage?


 

Stacy-Ann Brown
Good morning Dr. C, I must say that your first question propelled me to dig deep into the recesses of my mind to find out what initially spurred my interest in Languages. I first became interested in other languages as a young child while on a school trip to Curacao. I recall being fascinated as well as bewildered by the seemingly different lenguas I heard at that time which presented some amount of communication barriers with some folks. My deep seated interest and love for languages other than English began however in high school when I began studying Spanish. Over the years though, my interest in connecting with other cultures and people through language heightened significantly and propelled me to pursue French while in University.
In response to the second part of your question, I believe that the ability to speak more than one language is highly advantageous. People are able to connect with each other more and are able to exercise human expression through art for a wider audience. Also, studies have shown that speaking more than one language keeps diseases like Alzheimer’s at bay for 5-10 years than for monolinguals. Second language acquisition also opens doors and create opportunities for individuals both academically and professionally.

Dr. C
I know that patios is a dialect, but does it count towards the reduction of the Alzheimer’s chances? ….Lololololol….hahaha…
I truly believed that formal knowledge in three or more languages such as in your case, will definitely opens doors. Could you please share with our viewers your perspective on languages as it pertains to Caribbean Economic growth?

Stacy-Ann Brown
Lol. Well, I can’t comment on patios since dialects were not included in the study and are not readily recognized as Standard Varieties of Languages. You have however given me some homework to do.
I truly believe that the acquisition of more than one languages has and will continue to aid in the advancement of economic growth in the Caribbean. The primary reason being that foreign language acquisition undoubtedly eliminates existing language barriers within the region and the rest of the non-English speaking world. Without language barriers, negotiations and decision making processes are more efficiently handled, while reducing room for errors and miscommunication.
Fluency in a foreign language is also associated with increased wages which is a direct indication of economic growth in any region. Economic growth in exports is also possible for where foreign language economic returns could arise for the Caribbean region. There is an old adage in business which states that one can buy in his own language but must sell in the language of his customer, and the pattern of language and trade seems to conform to this idea.

Dr. C
Absolutely Stacy, yes the ability to speak multiple languages will provide some benefits for Caribbean people and more importantly to the global community at large. I noted that you wore two hats, one as an associate professor and secondly as a translator. In terms of these powerful attributes, is there a preference? And of the two which would you recommend to young people across the world that are deliberating on this topic?

Stacy-Ann Brown
I thoroughly enjoy both aspects of my profession…they are equally rewarding on a personal level, and of course one more financially rewarding than the other. At the risk of sounding unambitious, I must say that I prefer lecturing although it is less financially rewarding in my country. My preference lies in lecturing because of the human element. I love people, I enjoy interacting with my students, most of whom certainly help to ‘colour my world.’ I have the unique opportunity in this setting to impress upon them the importance of foreign language learning while sharing my experiences of other cultures with them. I also derive personal gratification from motivating them and reminding them every step of the way that ‘nothing is impossible.’
Since we all have different strengths and are all motivated differently; some of us introverts, some extroverts, I would strongly recommend either ‘HATS’ or both ‘HATS’ to young people across the world. It depends on individual preferences. But I strongly believe that one should not limit himself/herself.

Dr. C
Thank you for your response, I too am a great lover of people. Could you tell us who your role model if any, is?

Stacy-Ann Brown
You are my role model.
Historically though, my role model was Grace Oliphant, my English Language and English Literature teacher in high school.
She is a woman of exemplary character. Honest, ambitious, hardworking, very smart and genuinely caring. I had never met anyone like her in my life.

Dr. C
Oh wow! I am Flattered! In patios I would have said, “mi head big so till” lol… It’s always good to know that someone sees you as a standard. Tell me Stacy, is religion important to you?

Stacy-Ann Brown
You’re welcome!
Yes religion is important to my family and I, we dedicate some time on Sundays for worship.

Dr. C
I see…..If you have 6 months to live, what will you do 1st?

Stacy-Ann Brown
Dr. C, the first thing I would do is to complete my book that I started writing some years ago. It’s a story that looks at my life and the role of education as an instrument of change and motivation.

Dr. C
I wish you great success in the completion of that book as it seems like a lovely story. What is your favorite sports team and personality?

Stacy-Ann Brown
Thank you very much Dr. C
My favorite sport is tennis…personalities Serena and Venus. But of course I also greatly admire Usain Bolt and his outstanding contributions to Track and Field.

Dr. C
Wow! Quite diverse in your taste! Lol…. I must ask Stacy, are you married? If not, what do you look for in a husband?

Stacy-Ann Brown
I’m not married. The qualities I’d look for in a husband are: someone who is passionate about life, highly ambitious, humble, respectful, one with excellent paternal instincts, someone I can grow with, and who will love me to the fullest extent of his heart.

Dr. C
Could you please repeat those sentiments both in Spanish and French…..

Stacy-Ann Brown
Most certainly.
En français…
Les qualités que je rechercherais dans un mari sont: quelqu’un qui est passionné au sujet de la vie, fortement ambitieux, humble, respectueuse, une avec d’excellents instincts paternels, quelqu’un avec qui je peux développer et qui m’aimera dans la plus large mesure possible de son coeur.

Stacy-Ann Brown
En español…
Las calidades que buscaría en un marido son: alguien que es apasionado sobre la vida, muy ambicioso, humilde, persona respetuosa, persona con instintos paternales excelentes, alguien con quien puedo crecer, y persona que puede amarme con todo su corazón.

Dr. C
Wow! My talent has never included “match making” Lololololol . ..Especially on a global stage! Lololololol…
Stacy-Ann Brown, I would like to thank you for being this week’s guest on People Profile. We wish you all the best in your future endeavors and we are looking forward to having you as our guest again in the future.

Stacy-Ann Brown
It was my pleasure Dr. C. I thank you for your well wishes and I wish you and your team all the very best.

Please follow and like us: