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The World At Our Campus

Adult learners receive, provide language skills


04/09/2009

MCLA welcomes students from around the globe - from Russia to Puerto Rico, from India to Central America, and from Africa to Southeast Asia. Once on campus, MCLA's Adult Basic Education (ABE) course gives these individuals the skills they need to thrive, including ESOL (English for Speakers of Other Languages) classes.

ESOL students account for 40 percent of all students enrolled in the ABE program, which is sponsored through a Massachusetts Department of Education Grant.

While the students are as diverse as the globe itself, the students share a keen interest in learning English and transitioning to American culture. Most students also work toward attaining U.S. citizenship.

English proficiency is the key to being fully engaged in the U.S. and ultimately reentering the professions they held in their native countries. These occupations include teacher, journalist, lawyer, pastor, child care worker and more.

The students have also contributed valuable work to the College. Recently, the ESOL students partnered with MCLA students in upper-level Spanish classes, as well as Teacher Assistants and Language Fellows from the Williams College Center for Foreign Languages and students in the Global Education Project.

Together, these students translated program materials into seven different languages including Arabic, Chinese, Spanish, French, German, Russian and Japanese.