Francophiles’ spotlight: Veronica Eyram Lagbeneku at UENR, Sunyani [fr]
My name is Veronica Eyram Lagbeneku. I am a research assistant in the Department of Languages and General Studies at the University of Energy and Natural Resources (UENR).
I have a degree in French and Spanish from the University of Ghana, Legon, with a specialisation in Business French. I also obtained a diploma in French as a Foreign Language (FLE) from the University of Nantes where I did a language immersion programme. In 2015, I did my national service in the Department of Languages and General Studies as a teacher’s assistant. I currently work in the department full-time.
Why did you choose to learn French: What do you like about the French language that inspired you to study it and then teach it?
First, since speaking only one foreign language is not enough in today’s world, I have chosen to learn French. People who speak multiple languages increase their chances on the labour market, either in the country or internationally. Indeed, speaking French is an asset for a professional career. Fluency in French is essential for anyone considering a career in international organisations such as the UN, ECOWAS etc.
Learning French also gives a great advantage to study in France in all disciplines, and also to obtain an internationally recognised degree. Thanks to my degree programme in French, I was given the opportunity to go and deepen my knowledge of the French language in Nantes, France.
I like French because it is a pragmatic language that helps the learner to discover, to argue and present different points of view that are very useful in discussions or negotiations, and to develop critical thinking in the learner.
Contrary to popular belief, I think French is not as difficult a language to learn as people perceive it. After just a few lessons, one can easily start to communicate in French. There are many methods to learn French quickly and fluently, hence my motivation to teach the language. It is very interesting to teach a beginner who has no knowledge of French and observe the learner’s proficiency improve over time.
First, I teach Business French (Business French Diploma (DFP) of the CCIP). I am also the host of a French learning programme broadcast on the university’s radio station (GREENA FM), and currently I am in charge of the French Multimedia Resource Centre at UENR.
Pause-café Matinale is a radio programme that aims to provide French lessons to students, university employees and the general public. This programme is broadcast twice a week. I realised that the French is a language that requires daily practice for learners at all levels.
First, we noticed that our students had a significant problem with speaking and listening in French, so the programme serves as a daily practice for them.
In addition, this program gives the public the opportunity to discover a panorama of culture given the choices of our themes, which are often familiar and diverse (food, travel, fashion, work, sports, etc.). The course, which lasts 15 minutes per session, is very accessible and educational. The local audience love this show very much because we are in the area that is close to the border with Côte d’Ivoire. Many civil servants are also interested in this program.
As everyone in life is looking to improve, I plan to start my master’s degree next year if I have the means. I would also like to have professional training in radio presenting if I have the opportunity.
In conclusion, I would like the public to know that French is a practical language that can easily be learnt and that opens us to other cultural and professional horizons.