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Benjamin Rifkin

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Benjamin Rifkin

Benjamin (“Ben”) Rifkin earned his PhD in Slavic languages and literature at the University of Michigan and was recognized with an honorary doctoral degree in the humanities by Middlebury College for his work in languages and cultures. He has served as a faculty member at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and as a leader in higher education (director, dean, provost) at other institutions of higher education, including, currently, as Provost and Senior VP for Academic Affairs at Fairleigh Dickinson University (NJ).

Rifkin has been recognized with several awards for research from the American Association of Teachers of Slavic and East European Languages (AATSEEL): He is the author dozens of articles about language teaching and language acquisition, especially at the advanced level, as well as textbooks of Russian. His current research focuses on the question of the teaching of compassion in the world-language curriculum, at all levels.

Rifkin has a long history of service to the languages field: He has served on the boards of the American Council of Teachers of Russian, AATSEEL, NECTFL, and ACTFL. He was an active ACTFL-Certified OPI Tester and Trainer for 15 years, served on the editorial board of ACTFL’s journal, Foreign Language Annals, and the editorial board of the Slavic and East European Journal. Rifkin was recognized with ACTFL’s Wilga Rivers award in 2020.