Kari Merrell

I’ve noticed that this program helps give students added confidence in interacting with their peers. My student is in high school and has difficulty with pronunciation and comprehension of high-level words, and I know that affects her confidence. I love helping her work on these things so that she can not be fearful of meeting new people and making friends.

The program has added value to my life because I’m helping someone develop a very important skill that will benefit them for the rest of their life.

Elder Lisonbee

This letter is to share my thoughts of the Columbus Adult Education Center and Youth Programs.  In early 2020, I was asked to start a Youth Program for the Columbus Education Center.  Our objective is to help our teen-age refugee and immigrant youth enhance their English skills so they are better prepared to enter a post-secondary education program.

READ MORE

One of the greatest resources the Columbus Education Center brings to our students is the Reading Horizons software.  Reading Horizons is a company headquartered in Kaysville, Utah that develops software to enhance English reading skills.  Reading Horizons is the backbone of our Youth Program.  These kids have varying levels of reading ability and many holes in their reading education, based on how long they have been in the United States and how old they were when they began attending American schools.  Reading Horizons can help them fill in these holes and make progress regardless of their situations.

The challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic actually brought about an individualized, remote program for the Youth that works very well for both the students and the volunteers.  Students work independently on Reading Horizons.  Individual volunteer mentors are assigned who work remotely with students via Zoom or Facebook Messenger and practice pronunciation, increase reading comprehension, and improve conversational English.  This worked well during COVID and is now our go-forward program since the students often don’t have transportation to the school.  The schedules of students and volunteers are most easily accommodated when only two need to agree to the timeframe.  Students are also provided with gift cards as incentives for spending time on Reading Horizons and working with their mentors.

I love seeing our students succeed.  One student was attending SLCC, but really floundering.  Her mentor was able to connect her with the right resources at SLCC to enroll in classes she was truly interested in and to work through numerous issues unfamiliar to her that would have otherwise caused her to drop out of school.  Another student, graduating from high school, was helped by her mentor to complete her Financial Aid application, become admitted to SLCC, and be accepted into the “One Refugee” program, which is essentially a four year, full-ride scholarship.  Her future is bright with possibilities thanks to the help provided her.  Another younger student is full of excitement about the future of his education because reading English is becoming so much easier as he works on the Reading Horizons software.

We have been blessed with many great resources, both financial and time-wise, in our community.  I am excited to see these resources come together to help some very motivated young people create exciting, contributing futures for themselves and their families,

Marsha Adams/Youth Program Director

I have been with Columbus for a few months, with the opportunity to do English mentoring with Anita. Overall, the experience has been very beneficial, as it has helped me to teach, but also to be able to accommodate for a student’s certain needs. While there were some bumps in the road, I feel like we’ve overcome them, and that Anita is learning much. I’ve started to see an even greater love for writing since working with her, which has brought a smile to my face.

Mandi Palfreyman

My mother and I joined The Columbus School staff sometime around 2018. We wanted to have an opportunity to do service. I have met wonderful staff and students through the Columbus School. I started out working in the computer lab with the Reading Horizon program. I was born with cerebral palsy consequently, it is difficult for me to find service opportunities that  I am physically able to do. I spent years teaching adults with disabilities in California.

READ MORE

The Columbus School has given me a chance to meet and teach adults as a volunteer, the school has given me a way to teach and interact with people of all ages and cultures. We grow close to each other and learn things from each other as we share our life experiences and learn together.

When we had to start teaching on zoom because of the pandemic, I started doing reading with the students. The opportunity to teach on zoom expanded the reach of the school. Now we not only teach local students but people that are across the world. Everyone appreciates that this valuable service is done for free. It is a wonderful way for people to continue their education. Their new language and reading skills have the potential to open up new job opportunities for our student population.

Mary Llontop

Dear President Nelson. First of all a respectful and warm greeting. This is for the purpose of explaining my English language study opportunities. I am from Venezuela and have participated in various English language institutes. Now I enjoy Columbus. In which I do not pay anything and I learn English little by little. In a comfortable, pleasant and central place, with teachers who strive to teach us. I pray that these facilities can be maintained for said Institute. Thanking you with much love for everything you can do for our beloved institution. I love you President.

Neli

Hello

This is Neli from El Salvador.

I’m English Student from Columbus center.

I enjoy my English class and learn a little more every time. The Columbus center is very important for immigrants from different countries.

Pook Carson, PhD

My name is Pook Carson. I am on the Board of Directors of the Columbus Adult Education Center. I am also a learner and educator. As a professor, I admire the mission of the Center and what we have accomplished despite the hardships caused by COVID. The Center currently serves students from a wide variety of ethnicities in Utah and throughout the world.

READ MORE

We have great volunteers who devote their heart and soul to improving others’ lives by helping them learn English and other life skills such as sewing and computer literacy. We also provide advice on getting U.S. citizenship and employment. In addition, the Center has been working with the Utah Food Bank to provide lunch to anyone who is in need. Beyond food, the Center provides clothes and other items to support its students and their families. On a personal level and on behalf of the Thai community in Utah, I appreciate the opportunity that the Center has given us to offer Thai language curriculum and classes to the public.

These and the other programs offered by the Center are all very valuable contributions to the community of which I am very proud to be a part. I hope you also see the value of these activities and the critical role the Center plays in the lives of many new arrivals to the U.S. as they work to build their own American Dream. With the support of the Church, I am certain that the Center can continue to help refugee and immigrant communities and do even more to improve the lives of our neighbors in Utah and throughout the world.

Sincerely,

Pook Carson, PhD

Professor, Salt Lake Community College and University of Utah.

Start Learning & Subscribe Today!

SUBSCRIBE TO OUR NEWSLETTER

STAY IN TOUCH

ADDRESS

1860 South 300 East
Salt Lake City, UT 84111

SUBSCRIBE TO OUR NEWSLETTER

STAY IN TOUCH

ADDRESS

1860 South 300 East
Salt Lake City, UT 84111