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ELI Founding Director, Jayne C. Harder, 1916-1990
Dr. Jayne Crane Harder was a pioneer at the University of Florida and in the field of English as a Second Language. She was the original instructor for the "Summer English Institute," which began in 1955 and eventually became the English Language Institute.
Dr. Harder took a Ph.D. in English at UF and taught in the College of Arts and Sciences. She was employed for several years in the department of Speech, which sponsored the 1955 "Summer English Institute." Eventually, she would become the founding Director of the English Language Institute.
Dr. Harder nurtured the "Summer English Institute" from 1955 until 1970. She recruited, corresponded, admitted, received, and taught all students during that period. As the Program in Linguistics gained approval from the Board of Regents of the State of Florida, the Program's incoming Director, Dr. John Algeo, sought and obtained a faculty line for Dr. Harder for the express purpose of her directing an institute that would run year round. The English Language Institute in its modern version was born through the hard work of Dr. Harder in 1971, together with the new Program in Linguistics.
Dr. Harder saw to the development of the ELI from its humble beginnings to a large program that rode the wave of high enrollment from Venezuela and Iran. From 1971 to 1985, she taught graduate classes in TESL, forming a generation of ESL teachers, many of whom are currently active in the field.
After her retirement, in 1985, Dr. Harder was heavily involved in the Guardian Ad Litem program in Alachua County, Florida. She died in 1990 in Daytona Beach, while visiting her daughter, Dale Carlin O'Leary.