We had the honor to welcome four students from the United States who joined the NSHSS partial scholarship program at Tía Tula Spanish School. At the time of the interview, the students had enjoyed 3 weeks in Salamanca. We asked them about their experiences, opinions and future plans.
The four Spanish-learning students are Trevor, Joshua, Christopher and Brittany.
Trevor is a senior at Meyers High School, Christopher is in his senior year of College of the Holy Cross, Brittany finished her studies at Palo Alto High School this year and is now a freshman at UC Berkeley and Joshua went to Hondo High School and is now a sophomore at UT Dallas. These four students followed our Intensive Spanish Course, which includes four hours of intensive, interactive Spanish classes where students enrich their knowledge of Spanish culture, grammar and vocabulary. Tía Tula offers a wide variety of courses to meet each students' needs in the form of conversation, culture lessons, one-to-one classes and special programs for university students.
To reflect on their time with us, we wanted to ask the students about their experience in Spain and what they liked most. Therefore, the school can make the program even better for future NSHSS students to come.
Trevor: I have had Spanish since middle school, but it was mostly vocabulary. The Spanish I learn here is much more applicable to daily life situations.
Joshua: I have been learning Spanish for four years at school, but I also speak Spanish with my mother on occasion. This makes my conversational skills relatively strong, but grammatical wise, I have to learn a lot. In the B1 and B2 level, there is a lot of focus on grammar, so that was really nice.
Christopher: I had Spanish in high school and at college for two years. I would like to continue with level 3 Spanish when I get back this year.
Brittany: Spanish wasn't really available for me to learn, so before I came here I took a four-week course of intensive Spanish. This got me to a B1 level.
Brittany: Yes, I have been in Spain before, but not very long. I was on a school trip with my high school and it was only for 3 days.
Trevor: I actually did not know about Tía Tula until my mother brought it up. She received an email from NSHSS with information about study trips and school applications. She suggested the travel here and I was really enthusiastic about it and, of course, I wanted to go. I am staying here for 4 weeks which is a little bit longer than the others, but I am having a lot of fun. European people are cool.
Joshua: I saw Tía Tula offered in one of the NSHSS emails.
Christopher: I also received an email with the offers of NSHSS. The discount was really good and I wanted to improve my Spanish.
Brittany: The same for me, I received an NSHSS email.
Trevor: I really wanted to travel to Spain, experience new things and learn about other cultures different from mine. I really like musical and artistic influences, which I can pick up on which aren't around where I live. And I think getting to know other countries, customs and attitudes makes you a better person overall.
Joshua: I already had some knowledge about Spanish, but I would like to be fluent. This is because when you are fluent, you have better job opportunities.
Christopher: Because Spanish is such an important language in America, I had the same motivation as Joshua. Being fluent in two or more languages equals better job opportunities and better salary.
Trevor: The program runs very smoothly without pressure. The teachers are very good and not only teach us grammar and vocabulary, but also to understand the Spanish way of living. The classes are intense, but I am happy. Siesta is a thing here.
Joshua: Living with the host family is really fun and good for my Spanish because you have to speak Spanish to them. Not having to worry about cooking is also a plus. I think this is one of the best ways to be exposed to the real Spanish culture and language.
Christopher: Living with the host family is great! They are really nice and they can teach you how to cook paella, for example. It also adds to how seamless my whole stay here is. I don't have to think about a lot of things outside of studying.
Brittany: 4 hours of class every day is quite a lot, but the break and the change of teachers, makes it very doable. Otherwise it wouldn't be immersive. In the moment, it seems long, but when I look back on the week I have learned so much and time has gone by fast. The teachers are so nice and amazing.
Trevor: The food! I love chorizo. And a lot is happening in a city where everything is in walking distance. The vibe is very chill here because of all the students.
Joshua: You can walk everywhere you want and the walks are never boring. Salamanca has beautiful architecture, parks and streets so it is never a burden to take a 20-minute walk.
Brittany: It is a beautiful city and I like walking around and seeing all the old historical buildings in the city center.
The students would love to come back and plan to recommend the program to all their friends. WOULD YOU LIKE TO BE THE NEXT NSHSS MEMBER TO ENJOY THE TIA TULA PROGRAM?