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Student Voices


The English Language Institute has students come from all over the world to study English. Here are some of the reasons why our students say they would recommend the English Language Institute and UH Hilo as a great place to study.

Reason #1: The ESL Classes

Nellie Kati "As an international student, and especially when English is my third language, I found ESL classes really helpful. It helped me in my learning and academic success, not only that but I also made a lot of friends from other countries and came to understand and appreciate people and their culture more. I love and enjoy those classes, and the teachers are great!"

Nellie Kati is from Papua New Guinea and is majoring in Political Science.

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Reason #2: The Natural Environment

Kana Inoue "The Big Island of Hawai╩╗i is surrounded by a lot of dynamic nature. There are so many kinds of tropical plants blooming through the whole year since there are seven climates in Hawai╩╗i. Here, I feel like people are more connected to nature, better than in other cities like my home city, Tokyo. Hawai╩╗i is really quiet, so we can really hear the sounds created by nature."

Kana Inoue is from Japan and is majoring in Art and minoring in Linguistics.

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Reason #3: Small Class Sizes

Teresinha Santos Da Costa "The thing I like the most about UH Hilo is the small class size. The small number of students in the class helps me to get to know everybody which helps me to be more comfortable and confident to interact with them. It makes it easier for me to engage more in class participation, to work more in groups, and to demonstrate my learning in the class. In addition to becoming a more active participant in the class, I also have more chances to meet with the professor during office hours or after class and ask for more help to facilitate my learning process."

Teresinha Santos Da Costa is from Timor Leste and is majoring in Communications

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Reason #4: The Multicultural Campus

Agostino Maia "University of Hawaii at Hilo accommodates students from more than 20 countries. Students from each country bring different culture, attitude toward working, way to enjoy free time and food. As an international student at UHH, I am confident to say that I am not only learning what is offered in the class, but I also learn a lot of things from my fellow international students  as well as local students outside the class."

Agostinho Maia is from Timor Leste and is majoring in Business Administration.

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Reason #5: A safe environment

Yixiao Li "I have been to mainland America before and found out that Hawai╩╗i is one of the safest states in the U.S. In Hilo, we don't hear lot of news about incident of violence or shootings or other social safety problems. That's the main reason why I came here, because I want to spend my four years of college in a safe environment!"

Yixiao Li is from China and is double majoring in Linguistics and Japanese Studies.

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Reason #6: The Teachers

Gina Mahe "The teacher’s system of teaching is really good, they give the best advice: nothing is too late to improve. They always listen to students who seek their help because their main goal is to see their students understand the material of the class that they are teaching. In addition, they treat everybody equally and very friendly and approachable’’

Gina Mahe is from Tonga and is majoring in Computer Science.

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Reason #7: Future Success

Songyi YangÔÇťI'm writing to let you know that I got a teaching job in Korea. I'm teaching English to elementary school students in a private institution. This institution is one of the biggest in Korea and I'm proud of that fact. I graduated last month and now I'm working near my university.

I think a lot of you and ESL teachers and classes. 2008-2009 years are the most precious time in my life because they gave me a vision of my life. I really thank all ESL teachers: Laurel, Julie, Luke and Marianne. I don't forget what you taught me, and even better is that I'm using and practicing what I learned!

Your help was my foundation. I know I'm not perfect so I'm trying to get certification for TESOL, and I'm studying every day. Thank you all. I feel very happy and proud as I remember my Hawaiian days.ÔÇŁ

Songyi Yang was an exchange student from South Korea majoring in English.

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