Friday, January 10, 2020

¿Cuántos idiomas sabes hablar?

How many languages do you speak? 75% of Americans would say one, while the other 25% of Americans can speak two or more languages. Learning a second language can help you build deeper connections, advance your working career, figure out what you're singing to in Despacito, and embrace the culture of a foreign country. 

When I was in high school I had the chance to take an elective class. I didn't really want to take it, but everyone else in my class did, so I went with the flow and took it too. Very quickly I learned that the Spanish language was very vibrant, which added to an even more vibrant culture. I was excited to learn more during the rest of high school, and took it for two more years, but couldn't fit it in my schedule senior year. I wish I would've had that extra year of Spanish, because I did not expect how much we could use it on our trip to Spain. I've had the chance to order food, get directions, and just have conversations with locals. Without the knowledge of Spanish, I couldn't have had a better experience.

Recently, we elected a new national officer from Puerto Rico, Yomar Roman. His ability to speak both Spanish and English has allowed him to connect with more members. If you want to connect with more people, a second language can help.

A friend of mine from California used to ride to work with a Mexican immigrant worker for an hour each day. She couldn't speak Spanish and he couldn't speak English. They would have awkward car rides for many days until she learned how to say ¿Como sé dice ___ en Español? (How do you say... In Spanish?) She would point to objects near the road or on her person and learn how to say them in Spanish. Once she learned enough Spanish she could teach him English. They helped each other because they both wanted to learn and establish a connection..

Learning a second language has many benefits. It helps you connect with a whole new world of people, expand your cultural outlook, and especially build your leadership skills. If you don't want to learn Spanish, there's roughly 6,500 languages worldwide.  So, abierto su Boca y hablar.
Live más
-Nic Potthoff

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