Investing in the Future
For the next eight weeks, TYO interns will be teaching several English competency classes at An-Najah National University with the aim of improving the English and professional competency levels of students, so once they graduate they are ready for what we call, the ‘real world.’ English is a universal language spoken by most countries in the world if not all, yet in Nablus, the emphasis on English from a young age is minimal. Speaking to an undergraduate at An-Najah, he told me: “It is very hard to do my degree because most of my course is in English and the schools here don’t prepare you for University.” TYO hopes to offer these students the chance to improve their English and professional competency skills so they stand in good stead once they have graduated and are applying for jobs. When we administered the entry exam, we were hoping for about 100 students to be interested in this course. However, through our contact at the university, we were told that over 300 students were registered. Needless to say, we had to cut the numbers down to a manageable size, which wasn’t well received by the students as many continued to come hoping to attend the classes. Students that did manage to make it on to the course had to undertake an initial assessment to gauge their levels of English and to give us a better indication of what we needed to focus on with them.
The enthusiasm shown by each student to better their English and competency levels was overwhelming and just made me realize how as westerners, we often take such skills for granted. Overall, it was a humbling experience as every student expressed their gratitude for TYO and how they hoped to improve through this competency course. In the coming weeks, a lot of emphasis will be put on improving their English, building strong CVs and personal statements, and getting them ready for job interviews and assessments. Hopefully, this course will give each student the knowledge and confidence to go out there and fulfill their potential.
Danish is an intern at TYO Nablus.