In the month of January, English Language Fellow Connie Hahne, in coordination with The U.S. Embassy in Santiago and SBDC in Las Condes, piloted series of English-language conversation-club meetings focused on business. A group of eighteen entrepreneurs from a variety of countries and industries met weekly to practice English. The program incorporated topics such as time and stress management, prioritizing, public speaking, persuasion, and leadership. The program has the goal of supporting local business members and entrepreneurs in their English skills, enhancing their ability to interact with both tourists and English-speaking clients. This program will now be replicated throughout Chile.
The English-language business conversation club has benefits beyond the linguistic, of course. Through these meetings, participants were also able to network and gain access to local resources to further their English-language learning. The class format included watching a video on a topic of conversation before each meeting, participating in an online discussion group, and face-to-face discussions and activities as a group. It was a success on a plethora of levels.