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ESL holds Completion Ceremony for graduates

ESL holds Completion Ceremony for graduates
Eight ESL students were recognized during a ceremony Dec. 8 at The Gheens Recital Hall. From left are Jhonbert Gonzalez Rojas; Joshua Detherage, ESL and MA TESOL instructor; Robert Parrish, ESL and MA TESOL instructor; Nicolas Jaldin Gamboa; Maria Cristina Huertas Garcia; Raquel Cunha, ESL director; Kinjal Khandavi; Tatsuki Nanjo Amarjargal Sandr; Vicki Campbell; Eduardo Trindade; MA TESOL director; and Charlene Myles. (Campbellsville University Photo by Chosalin Morales)

By Gerard Flanagan, news writer/photographer/social media, Office of University Communications

CAMPBELLSVILLE, Ky. – Campbellsville University’s English as a Second Language (ESL) Institute recognized eight graduates during its completion ceremony Dec. 8 at The Gheens Recital Hall.

Raquel Cunha, director of ESL, told her story of how she became involved with ESL. That story began in 2007 when Cunha, originally from Brazil, moved to Campbellsville, Ky.

“I was an ESL student just like you,” she said. “I did not speak any English and started studying English at the ESL Institute. I have great memories from ESL. I made many friends from around the world, and I enjoyed my time as an ESL student.

“It was sometimes frustrating for me because I could not understand my teachers and classmates, but my teachers were fantastic in how they helped me improve my English skills.”

Dr. Eduardo Trindade, director of the Master of Arts in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (MA TESOL), arrived from London, England, in December 1987 to start ESL classes. He completed his Ph.D. this year.

“I could not understand a word of English back in ’87,” Trindade said. “Now, although I still have a foreign accent, English helped me reach quite a few goals in life.

“I know life can be full of surprises and difficulties. However, with commitment and the many blessings from God, we can all accomplish marvelous things.”

Trindade then gave the graduates three recommendations.

“Appreciate the complexity of life and continue to aspire for a better future for you and your community,” he said. “Think critically and creatively to become resourceful in times of uncertainty. Become a lifelong learner with a curious attitude, and you will enjoy life to the fullest.”

Joshua Detherage, ESL and MA TESOL instructor, presented the Outstanding ESL Student Award to Nicolas Jaldin Gamboa and Alexei Buchillet.

Cunha and Robert Parrish, ESL and MA TESOL instructor, presented the ESL completion certificates.

Candidates recognized for ESL completion were as follows: Alexei Buchillet of France; Kinjal Khandavi of India; Maria Cristina Huertas of Panama; Tatsuki Nanjo of Japan; Nicolas Jaldin Gamboa of Bolivia; and Amarjargal Sandr of Mongolia.

Trindade, Detherage and Parrish conducted the hooding of the candidates.

Hooding candidates for MA TESOL were as follows: Charlene Yvette Myles of Waddy, Ky.; and Jhonbert Augusto Gonzalez Rojas of Venezuela.

Amanda Goforth, director of the Center for Global Engagement, provided the closing prayer.

Campbellsville University is a widely acclaimed Kentucky-based Christian university with more than 12,000 students offering over 100 programs of study including Ph.D., master, baccalaureate, associate, pre-professional and certification programs. The website for complete information is