Deaf Student Long Tran Takes On the Language of Love

Deaf Student Long Tran Takes On the Language of Love

We take pride in the hard work and achievements of our students at FSCJ. Our sign language interpreters would like to highlight one individual who went above and beyond to excel in all of his classes.

Most hearing-impaired students enrolled at the College opt to take American Sign Language (ASL) to satisfy their foreign language requirement. But Long Tran, a student who never turns down an opportunity to challenge himself academically, is learning to read and write French to try something different.

His pursuit to study the language of love has also proved challenging to his interpreters, none of whom are fluent in French. Despite this, they along with his French instructor have been patient in working with Long to achieve his goals.

“I learned a lot from my instructor helping me, giving me tips and clues as far as how to find mnemonics that help me to remember things better,” Long said. “So that helped me a lot and I learned a lot more. I didn’t feel like I was overwhelmed in the class, and it was very challenging.”

Long, who earned his Associate in Arts (A.A.) in Chemistry, is currently finishing up French II this semester. One of the biggest challenges was finding a learning method that worked best for Long, his interpreter and his instructor.

“A lot of deaf students tend to rely on visual cues more so than auditory cues,” he said. “So, we need to make sure that there’s no barrier for them.”

Concerned about overcoming the challenges of communicating the language effectively, Long decided to ask his French instructor to write out words on the classroom board. This helped ensure that the interpreter would get the correct spelling and minimize the difficulty of translating, making it a lot easier for everyone.

Long says he has no plans to stop at French. In the future, he’d especially like to learn Vietnamese in order to communicate with his parents in their native language.

The student’s advice to deaf students interested in taking a foreign language is not to stress over taking on this new challenge, and to work with educators and interpreters to find a method of learning that works for them. 

“Get advice and counselling from teachers, from tutors…they’re willing to help here at FSCJ,” Long said. “And if you work it, it will work out in the end.” There is no limit to our students’ potential, and Long’s motivation to overcome obstacles to excel academically proves just that.

Click here to learn more about Long's experience working with his French instructor and interpreters.