The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

TCC student excels at bilingual communication

By Shay Freeman/reporter

Realizing the importance of bilingual communication in a culturally diverse world, more students are seriously pursuing a second language.

That is why SE Campus student Bethel Zehaie chose to take Spanish.

Zehaie will actually become trilingual after she masters the language. A native of Eritrea, a small country north of Ethiopia, she speaks English as well as her native language, Tigrinya.

Her parents were forced to leave their country because of the 40-year war fought with Ethiopia. They found refuge in Italy and eventually migrated to the States in the early 1980s.

Zehaie took English as a second language classes in early grade school to help her with pronunciation.

“My family and I were forced to learn the language of those around us in order to be successful here,” she said.

She thinks Spanish is important because she has noticed the growing Hispanic population in the Metroplex.

“I believe being fluent in another language will help me tremendously in my professional career,” she said.

She plans to be an attorney, and her language skills will allow her to work and represent a broader clientele.

Zehaie believes that her SE Spanish instructor Diane Thornburg is “very knowledgeable.”

The homework and class assignments give her a chance to practice what she has learned in the lectures.

“She teaches beyond the book,” she said about Thornburg.

In class, Zehaie also has learned about the Spanish culture. She plans to focus on conversational Spanish even when she completes her language requirements.

“I plan to visit Spain in the near future to use what I have learned,” she said.

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