Those in Voorhees who might have always dreamed about learning a second or even third language will now have some help in making that dream a reality thanks to the Camden County Library System.
As of last week, the Camden County Library System, including the Voorhees Branch Library, is now offering library cardholders free access to the well-known Rosetta Stone language learning software.
Named after the famous Rosetta Stone rock stele found in 1799 that provided the modern world’s key to understanding and translating Egyptian hieroglyphs, the Rosetta Stone computer program uses a combination of sounds, text and images to teach users 30 of the world’s most common languages.
Users can chose from such languages as Spanish, French, Italian, Russian, Japanese, Chinese, Arabic and even English for non-native English speaking users.
According to a press release from the Camden County Library System, Camden County Library Director Linda Devlin said she was pleased to offer such a “valuable language learning resource” to patrons of the library system.
“Helping to meet the interests and needs of our residents in this very practical way also fosters cultural awareness in the diverse communities of Camden County and New Jersey,” Devlin said. “It’s one more benefit that adds value to having a library card and access to all that we offer residents.”
According to that same release, more than 22,000 schools and 12,000 businesses have used Rosetta Stone to help teach new languages for more than 20 years.
Devlin said the library system was also able to now offer Rosetta thanks to aid from the State Library.
“When the New Jersey State Library started offering Rosetta Stone free of charge to New Jersey libraries, we all win,” Devlin said. “Library users all around the state enjoy a premier language resource free of charge, financed by the state library. It is an expensive resource that many libraries could not afford on their own.”
Camden County Freeholder Bill Moen, who also serves as the board’s liaison to the Camden County Library System, was described in the release as “enthusiastic” about the Rosetta Stone program coming to the library system.
“This is a great tool to help us all celebrate the diversity of Camden County by being able to speak in the languages of our neighbors,” Moen said. “There is no better way to experience another culture than to learn its customs and learn to speak its language. It will open a world of opportunity to you.”
The Rosetta Stone program will replace the library system’s former language resource Mango and can be accessed on its website, www.camdencountylibrary. org/rosetta-stone.
Patrons can also access the program through apps for their various mobile devices.
If using a computer to access the program, patrons will need a headset and microphone, and those using the app on a mobile device will need that device’s built-in speaker (or headphones) and microphone.
Voorhees residents and those in the other 25 member communities served by the Camden County Library System can sign up for a free library card by calling one the system’s eight branches or by visiting www.camdencountylibrary.org/get-library-card.