News & Blog: Learner Stories


Guest Blogger: Doroty Delli Ficorelli

I’m a mother of two boys and a wife. I moved here from Italy two years ago with my amazing family, my husband Massimo, my two sons, Diego and Marco and my dog Lilly. Doroty copy

I still remember when my husband asked me to move to the US, I had my new house my friends and my job …. I worked two years for Coca Cola Company in Modena and 11 Years for F.R A., a manufacturing company. In both of these companies, I worked in administration. And this company became my second family during the time and for that reason it was a hard decision to leave my job.

Living in the US is a good opportunity for my sons. They are learning a new language and living in a different culture.

At the beginning it was not easy for me, because I didn’t know anybody and my English was really bad.

I said, if I want to live here, I need to improve my English. So I did a little research and I found the Adult Tutoring Program at the Literacy Center. I was lucky and I met and studied with my tutor June Grandy, who helped me understand the US culture and encouraged me to commit to working hard day by day to reach my goal.

At the same time, once a week, I went to the Conversation Club in Kentwood Library, with a teacher named Jamie. I also met with a teacher named Maureen Birnie for six lessons to improve my pronunciation. Then the Literacy Center gave me another opportunity. I started the intermediate class with a teacher named Christy Dam and then I moved to the advance class with Carrie Roper. All of these women are so important to me, because I have learned a lot of things.

I remember, two years ago, at the first parent teacher meeting at my son’s school, I wasn’t able to understand what the teachers were saying and I had to go with my husband. After one year, I was able to attend alone at my first parent teacher meeting at the school.

I was so happy to receive congratulation for my English and to see how people were impressed about my improvement in only one year. I am also a volunteer at the Wealthy Elementary School Library and I used to go to the PTO meeting every month.

These are the results of the amazing work I did at the Literacy Center and the support I’ve received from all of my teachers.

The Literacy Center surprised me because inside of that building on Monroe Street, the staff works so hard and the teachers are so helpful and experienced.

I think that culture is important for everybody. I’ve experienced how much culture could change my life and this is what the Literacy Center really does. Every teacher works hard to provide people the chances to improve and change their life.

Last but not least I want to say thanks to two wonderful people Jennifer Summers and Chad Patton. These people believe in me and they have helped me grow in this time of my life.

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