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A Journey of Language Learning and College Success

With the launch of our new website – ‘Powys Neath Port Talbot Adult Learning in the Community’, we took the opportunity to speak with one of our ESOL learners Jolanta Przytulska, who has shown great aptitude and determination in learning a new language through the College.

Jolanta Przytulska, a 48-year-old participant in the ESOL (English for Speakers of Other Languages) program at Brecon Beacons College, embarked on a transformative journey with a clear goal – mastering the English language for practical, everyday use.

Hailing from Poland, Jolanta’s initial exposure to English was limited to just two words – “thank you” and “good morning” – upon her arrival in the UK. Unlike her previous language studies in German and Russian, English remained unexplored until she set foot in Wales.

The decision to pursue English proficiency was driven by the practical need to communicate effectively in shops and within the community. Jolanta’s dream of language mastery and exploring other countries led her to choose English as a focal point in her educational journey.

Reflecting on her college experience, Jolanta expresses deep satisfaction. The positive environment, supportive peers, and excellent teachers have created an atmosphere conducive to her language learning goals. These experiences have not only contributed to academic growth but have also positively impacted her mental well-being.

Beyond the academic realm, Jolanta’s engagement with extracurricular activities has been noteworthy. Inspired by a visit from Bethan Logan, the Outdoor Activities Development Officer for Mid Wales with the Outdoor Partnership, she joined a local walking group. This venture not only provided physical activity but also facilitated interactions with new people and enhanced her language skills.

When asked about Jolanta; Bethan had nothing but good things to say: “Jolanta signed up to the 10-week walking programme with The Outdoor Partnership in Llandrindod Wells in October 2023 and has been a great asset to the group – her positivity and enthusiasm are contagious! She was undeterred by a few false starts where she couldn’t find the group at the meeting point, she persevered with it and was always very enthusiastic and appreciative of the opportunity. The group were given the option to complete a navigation course with Bryn Walking as a follow up, which four of them did take up, including Jolanta, and the feedback from the instructors was very positive as well – everybody engaged well and picked up new skills quickly. Jolanta now has her Bronze National Navigation Award which is nationally recognised.”

Looking toward the future, Jolanta envisions working as a dietitian in the UK. However, she recognizes the prerequisite of English fluency before pursuing courses in Cardiff or London, underscoring the impact her college experience has had on shaping her aspirations.

Navigating challenges has been part of Jolanta’s college journey. Difficulty in understanding spoken English and articulating thoughts posed hurdles, but the unwavering support from tutors and the positive encounters at the College helped her overcome these challenges. Financial constraints were also addressed through support from the College, ensuring her continued academic progress.

In offering advice to incoming students, Jolanta enthusiastically recommends the college experience, emphasizing the happiness, enjoyment, and sense of community she has found. Her journey stands as a testament to the transformative power of education and the positive impact it can have on one’s life.

Powys Neath Port Talbot Adult Learning in the Community is a new site that we’ve created with several partners to provide better signposting to a huge range of part-time courses that are available throughout South and Mid Wales.

Partners include
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