New Exhibit Highlights Work of English Language Learning Students and the Role of Globalization

photo of Salem at SEA students
Salem at SEA

Month-long Program Culminates in July 31 Exhibit Opening

Essex National Heritage Commission (Essex Heritage), a non-profit that manages and provides numerous programs preserving and enhancing Essex County’s historic, natural and cultural resources, is partnering with Salem State University and others to host a month-long summer enrichment program for English Language Learning (ELL) students. The program will culminate with the unveiling of a student-curated museum exhibit on Thursday, July 31, at the National Park Service Regional Visitor Center in Salem. Documenting their experiences through photography and writing, the 40 students from Salem high schools will create displays to educate the public about globalization in Salem’s past, present, and future.

The program, called Salem at SEA (Salem Summer ELL Academy): A Global Salem – Past, Present, and Future, aims to help students improve English language literacy and fluency while focusing on the role of globalization in the world, the local community, and their own lives. With a grant from the Massachusetts Executive Office on Education, Salem State University partnered with Essex Heritage and other community organizations to organize the program, which includes classroom learning as well as walking tours, meetings with local officials, and site visits to the Peabody Essex Museum, local high tech businesses, and more. 

“Salem at SEA teaches language skills while also engaging high school students in the rich resources and myriad year-round activities available within the Essex National Heritage Area that they can enjoy with family and friends,” says Essex Heritage CEO Annie Harris. 

Now in its second year, the Salem at SEA program’s unique teaming of district teachers, university faculty, and community educators has been shown to deepen students’ language development skills.  It also creates a core group of teacher leaders who can help colleagues improve their support of ELL students.

Opening Reception for Exhibit on July 31

The exhibit, Global Salem, Past and Present: Markets, Materials, and Minds, opens Thursday, July 31 from 12:30 p.m. to 2:00 p.m. at the National Park Service Visitor Center in Salem, MA located at 2 New Liberty Street. Student presentations and awards will be followed by refreshments.  The exhibit is open to the public free of charge.