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December 2016 - Liz Johnston

Bursting with enthusiasm for learning Spanish, Liz arrives for her classes with arms waving, a wide smile, and a cheery “¡Hola!”. Genuine and kind, she makes a pointed effort to get to know and practice with all of her classmates, warmly contributing to the feeling of camaraderie fomented in small-group classes. She’s hardworking and tenacious, never giving up as she rides the waves of feeling excited and challenged in the learning process. Joining us for our community fiestas, Liz quickly integrated herself as part of the Tierra community and is always eager to lend a helping hand. We’re grateful to have Liz as a dedicated Tierra student, and look forward to continuing to see her jump the hurdles of building Spanish skills!


Name: Liz Johnston
Occupation: PT sales associate at Gazelle Natural Fibre Clothing
Time studying: Around a year and a half

1) Why are you studying Spanish?

"There are many opportunities to speak Spanish in Portland. I found that French wasn’t useful in Portland! And even though I struggle with Spanish as I advance, it's still fun to bumble along in Spanish when I’m out and about in Portland."

2) What is your favorite part about your experience here at Tierra?

"I enjoy the enthusiasm of the teachers, I've had two. My teacher this year, Laura D, is very supportive and cheers me (and all of us!) on for each victory, no matter how small it is. I enjoy getting to know my classmates, and receiving their ongoing support, patience, and encouragement! Tierra is a welcoming environment, and the office staff is well organized. The Tierra parties are fun too!"

3) Can you tell us of a time you have been able to use what you have learned studying here?

"I just started volunteering at a local food bank where just the other day I interacted with two Spanish-speaking clients. It was a joint effort between us, and they were happy, I hope, to have me attempt speaking in Spanish. I will be learning new words as it relates to my interaction at the food bank. I could not have made this courageous step of interacting so intimately in Spanish, had I not been working so hard at Tierra."

¡Felicidades Liz!