One hundred twenty-one (121) participants proudly completed the Foreign Service
Institute’s (FSI’s) Foreign Language Program (FLP) – Basic Language Course Levels I to
III. The virtual closing ceremony was held on 20 December 2021 via Zoom.

The FLP – Basic Language Course is a regular language training on 7 major language
courses, namely: Arabic, Bahasa Indonesia, French, German, Mandarin, Nihongo, and
Spanish. Each language course is held every trimester, twice a week from 5:00 p.m. to
8:00 p.m., for a total of 90 training hours per level. It is conducted every year for
Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) personnel and attachés of other partner agencies
who are slated for foreign assignments.

In his Welcome Message, DG Cariño congratulated the participants and hoped that they
enjoyed their courses, even though the pandemic has made attending school very difficult
for everyone. He further encouraged the graduates to practice their knowledge and keep
on learning different languages. He added that knowing another language is always
something useful, practical and makes the people you speak with appreciate that you
have tried to learn their language. Through communication and learning people’s
language, we are able to learn more and discover more things.

Finally, DG Cariño assured that the Institute will try to keep on improving its system to
deliver more quality training.

Aside from the awarding of certificates, FSI also recognized the outstanding graduates of
each language program:

One of the highlights of the ceremony was the class presentations, where the participants
had the opportunity to showcase their language skills.

The graduates prepared different virtual presentations. The Arabic class virtually took
everyone to Quiapo Mosque and discussed the Islamic five daily prayers. The Bahasa
Indonesia class sang the Bahasa Indonesia version of “Please Be Careful with my Heart,”
Indonesia Christmas song, danced an Indonesian folk song. The French class
presentation held a tour around France. While the German class did a serenade with
German Christmas songs. As for the Mandarin class, participants sang music from the
famous Chinese drama series, Meteor Garden and A Love So Beautiful. The Nihongo
class sang the “Country Road” one of the soundtracks of an anime series entitled
“Whisper of the Heart.” And lastly, the Spanish class prepared a musical presentation.

The audience, including several DFA assistant secretaries, guests from Posts, FSI
officers and staff, and language instructors enjoyed their performances.

Each class was guided by the following foreign language instructors: Mr. Luqman Lucman
bin Usman Imam (Arabic), Mr. Kristanto (Bahasa Indonesia), Mr. Francis Dürr (French),
Ms. Karen Fatima Francisco (German), Ms. Ling Ling Ponce (Mandarin), Ms. Josephine
P. Sato (Nihongo), and Mr. Royce Randall B. Lim (Spanish).

Out of the 121 graduates, 98 were DFA personnel, six (6) from Naval Intelligence Training
Institute, four (4) from the National Commission on Muslim Filipinos, two (2) each from
the Senate of the Philippines, Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas, Bureau of Immigration,
Department of Tourism, and Philippine National Commission for UNESCO (UNACOM),
and one (1) each from Tourism Promotions Board, Philippine National Police, and
Department of Labor and Employment.

Foreign Language Program Graduates during the virtual closing ceremony.