On Tuesday, Oct. 12, the Office of Diversity organized its first Student Speaker Series called “My Story” to highlight the experience of two students who grew up speaking two languages.

Fabiola Espinal and Jhoswell Rosario, undergraduate students at Southern New Hampshire University (SNHU), shared their experiences and stories speaking two languages since their childhood.

Kayla Page, the director of the Office of Diversity organized the event. She asked the speakers a series of questions about when they started speaking two languages, how the process was, and what the benefits are.

Fabiola Espinal moved to the United States at the age of seven with her family. She learned the English language in one year. Jhoswell Rosario came to the United States from Dominican Republic at the age of 13, but he went to an English school prior to coming here.

Although both of the speakers had different experiences, they found it easier to speak in English rather than their first language, Spanish. They also had to take English as a Second Language (ESL) classes at their schools.

“I was always with people who spoke two languages”, said Fabiola Espinal. “I adopted the language fast.”

The speakers and participants also talked about the benefits of speaking two languages. “When the businesses I work with know that I speak two languages, they don’t find it necessary to hire someone else who speaks that language,” said Jhoswell Rosario.

“We are hoping that students come and share their stories,” said Kayla Page. “We also celebrate individuals’ experiences.”

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