Lucrecia Arias is a level five ESOL student. She recently received the opportunity to interview her teacher, Natalie Patalano. Lucrecia came from El Salvador and has been resettled into the United States by IINE. In 2017, she joined IINE as a student and worked her way up to a more advanced level of English.
As the date of her class graduation nears, Lucrecia took the chance to learn more about her teacher, and to practice her English. Here is their interview!
L: Hello Natalie, I have 5 questions for you. Do you believe that everything happens for a reason?
N: I do believe in fate, in my own experience, I took a language class when I was in college, kind of by accident, and I really fell in love with it and it turned into my career.
L: What is your favorite element; land, air, fire, or water?
N: Water. Because water makes me think of the ocean and I like being by the ocean and I think it’s very peaceful and really powerful and scary and without water we wouldn’t be able to survive.
L: Which country would you move to if you could live anywhere in the world?
N: Realistically, I would probably live here, because my family is here. But, if I could pick any place in the world, I think I would live in Tuscany in Italy, because it’s very beautiful and my family immigrated from there a long time ago.
L: Did you ever have a dream in another language?
N: Yes, actually a few times where I had dreams where I was speaking in Italian and other people were speaking in Italian. And do you know what they say if you dream in another language, that means you’re thinking in that language, right? So, it’s like another level of proficiency.
L: What do you recommend to fulfill your professional dreams. One or two things, the most important thing on how to practice.
N: Well there is an expression in English that says “do what you love and you’ll never work another day in your life”. So if you do something that you’re very passionate about, it doesn’t matter if you make a lot of money, it matters that you’re happy and you feel fulfilled. So, I do definitely believe in that. I think you have to work really hard and not be afraid to reach out to people, even strangers, and make professional connections. Because if someone helps you advance in your career, as you advance, you can help other people and you’re always paying it forward.