Connecting Through Language

World Learning is currently implementing its third iteration of the Virtual English Language Training (ELT) Program to prepare spring semester participants for their academic journey in the U.S. and to connect them with their American peers. For Virtual ELT participants, however, learning the English language is a powerful skill beyond their Global UGRAD experience. It can further their career, improve their community, and help them stay connected to the world.

Below, Virtual ELT participants share their English language learning journey and what they hope to accomplish with the English language:

“I still remember what inspired me to learn the English language: a beautiful flight attendant woman of Lao Airlines. When I was a kid, I had an opportunity to fly with Lao Airlines and to meet her on the plane. She spoke English fluently and confidently. This made me want to become like her. With the ambition to become a cabin crew in the future, I chose English for my degree. I’ve been learning the language almost every single day both at university and by myself. I’ve been trying to improve my English every time, especially my speaking, writing, and listening skills. I’ve tried to speak with foreigners and English learners on social media. I think it’s working out. My speaking is getting better day by day. The biggest challenges are grammar rules and pronunciations. I found both very hard to accomplish with confidence. I’ve been using many online dictionaries for correctly pronouncing and learning more grammar structures. My goals are to have the potential to effectively teach English to other people, to talk and discuss any topics deeply with native speakers, and to have great skill in writing books, articles, and essays. I hope to accomplish these goals one day through my hard work, consistency, and varied practice process.” Khamsay Phomachan, Laos

“I began studying English when I was 12 years old. It was very difficult for me because of the Nicaraguan accent and my economic status. Learning English has become easier since the moment I discovered that it was for me and that it is what I wanted. My life goal is to learn and teach English to other people no matter their ages. To illustrate this, I would like to accomplish this by opening or being a part of an English academy [to] improve the lives of those in need.” Miguel Cuarezma, Nicaragua

“Back then, I started learning English by attending an English school; however, in my hometown, it was quite difficult to find a good one. Sometimes, I need to watch movies, listen to music and do other stuff that would improve my English skills outside the class due to the fact that it is really difficult and there is a lack of resources in my hometown. With that, the biggest challenges I faced were finding a good school and teacher, while finances were also the things my family had to encounter. Being a person in the countryside, I know exactly that if I merely depend on the session in the class, it will not help me much with my English skills; that is why I tried to do other things besides that. Through English, I can further my academic studies and communicate with others. Moreover, I would be able to stay informed of contemporary situations in the world.” Sokchea Suon, Cambodia