Here is some of what she had to say:
Q. How has learning a new language helped you in your personal life?
A. This has been the most unexpected and wonderful benefit of taking on this learning process. Learning a language is not only about acquiring new words in one’s vocabulary, it is about discovering a new culture and a new way of thinking. As I was progressing with my French classes at Berlitz, I found myself more and more interested in watching French movies, listening to French music, and just wanting to know more about the French culture.
Q. How has learning a new language helped you in your professional life?
A. First, it (language learning) demonstrated that I am not afraid to take on challenging assignments and...ready to walk the talk when it comes to helping our team. Secondly, speaking a new language opens professional opportunities, now and in the future. For example, originally our plan was for training classes to be taught online, but now we may add live classes in Montreal. So far, I co-facilitated (in French) one online training session... I am being told by one of my more experienced colleagues that I did well, a lot of preparation went into it, and I felt very proud to achieve this milestone.
Q. How has learning a second language helped you in your travel, if at all?
A. ...The natural progression of learning French is that now my husband and I are planning to travel to France soon. I realize that, in this day and age, there are many technological gadgets and apps helping with instant translation services; (however), what makes a travelling experience memorable and meaningful is being able to connect with the locals and engaging in genuine conversations in an uninhibited manner. To me, this is invaluable and worth the effort.
Q. Does knowing a second language make you feel different, personally, other than helping in your personal or professional life?
A. Definitely! For anyone that places value on feeling challenged and accomplished, learning a language is a great opportunity. Most importantly, we go through life taking for granted certain cultural norms that are associated with our own background. I find that learning a second language provides us with a window into ‘seeing’ and understanding a different world and, in a way, learning more about our own culture.
Q. What would you tell others who are considering learning another language?
A. Be prepared to work hard at it. Understand that this is a journey, not a destination. Know that you will feel humbled and frustrated, but you will also feel excited and smart. And, of course, have fun with it!
In a review on Facebook she also wrote about her Berlitz experience:
“Berlitz Vancouver is a wonderful place to study a language! All the staff there are working in unison to create a welcome, relaxing, and successful learning atmosphere. It is so refreshing to interact with committed instructors and dedicated support staff. As intimidating as it may be to take on a new language, I honestly look forward to being there for each and every class.
I highly recommend it to anyone considering language services. You won’t regret it.”