Languages Canada's president Sharon Curl (left) and Bert Vercamer, Sentio's general manager, signed the agreement at Languages Canada's conference in Quebec. Photo: Elaina Loveland for The PIE News.
Languages Canada’s president Sharon Curl (left) and Bert Vercamer, Sentio’s general manager, signed the agreement at Languages Canada’s conference in Quebec. Photo: Elaina Loveland for The PIE News.

AFS Intercultural Programs is proud to announce a new partnership between Sentio, Global Education Network, an AFS subsidiary, that provides intercultural learning opportunities to young adults, and Languages Canada, Canada’s largest language education association.

The Global Competence Certificate (GCC), Sentio’s state of the art educational program that guides participants before, during and after their program abroad, is now available to the 225 member programs of Languages Canada and their 134000 language students. This innovative blended educational program, with engaging videos and opportunities for peer learning represents an exciting way to provide improved intercultural learning and cross-cultural adjustment training to an increasingly diverse and internationally mobile generation. The Global Competence Certificate helps participants reflect and interact with peers on questions such as cultural identity, power, and privilege. It is a complementary tool to traditional language courses.


“All too often, second language education is limited to a conventional teaching experience in class”, explains Bert Vercamer, General Manager of Sentio. “Language learning and development of global competence are two sides of the same coin. Thanks to this partnership, tens of thousands of students coming into Canada can better adapt to the new cultural environment in which they find themselves and thus perform better in class and overall in their experience abroad”.

Language learning and development of global competence impact each other. According to recent research (such as The Georgetown Consortium Project: Interventions for Student Learning Abroad), the variables that have the biggest impact on people’s global competence acquisition are language learning, and having intentional, facilitated, intercultural education surrounding one’s experience abroad.

Similarly, the research shows that gaining language proficiency is easier if orientations that prepare young people to go abroad include a cultural component. This cultural preparation also has a positive impact on participants’ overall satisfaction with their experience abroad.

“We sincerely believe this partnership will benefit all levels of second language education in the country,” says Gonzalo Peralta, Executive Director of Languages Canada. “Students will benefit from training that will allow them to better understand and integrate themselves into their environment. Schools will receive additional training. And Languages Canada wins a partner. ”

For more information, contact: Bert Vercamer, Chief Program Innovation Officer at AFS Intercultural Programs and General Manager of Sentio, Global Education Network.




Sentio, Global Education Network, was founded in 2014 as a full subsidiary of AFS Intercultural Programs. AFS has existed for 70 years as an exchange organization and is successfully creating exchange programs and intercultural learning opportunities for close to 13,000 participants each year, coming from about 100 countries, with 60 AFS Network Organizations globally.


Languages Canada is Canada’s national language education association representing more than 225 private and public members that offer accredited English and French programs. Overall, more than 134,000 students come to Canada every year to learn English and/or French. Language programs generated nearly $1.5 billion in 2015 in export revenue for the Canadian economy.