English Conversation Club started as a place for many international students to practice their speaking skills and has evolved into a place for promoting intercultural understanding and learning. Jennifer Burns, the lead facilitator, invites all students, staff, and community members to join the club, and creates a safe and open environment for people to ask questions, share their experiences and support each other in their learning journey at SLC.
Melinda Vanzanten, Professor and Program Coordinator of Office Administration, encourages all her students to participate and says “the feedback we received from students is outstanding. They feel more comfortable communicating and working in group projects, are better able to keep up with the rapid pace of delivery in class and enjoy the relaxed atmosphere of the group and of course a chance to meet new people.”
The benefits for students are obvious but faculty and staff who regularly joined the conversations also commented on how valuable the interaction with people from all over the world meant to them. Louise Chatterton, Dean, Faculty of Business and Community Services, is one of the regular participants and thoroughly enjoyed the experience. “Hearing the stories of the various students and listening to them support and encourage one another was awesome. I also personally learned so much from their stories. It was a most worthwhile commitment of only one hour/week.”
A new opportunity this semester: if you would like to suggest a topic of high interest in our intercultural setting, gain more skills facilitating discussions or be a guest speaker, please contact Jennifer Burns at JABurns@sl.on.ca.
The drop-in English Conversation Club runs virtually on MS Teams every Thursday from 4:30-5:30pm until November 25. Use this link to join. A great conversation awaits you! All are welcome.