Felizitas is 19 years old and studies Business Administration in Switzerland. She is originally from Germany, where she has danced ballet for thirteen years and played piano for a few as well. She is very open minded and quick to get to know people, loves music and shopping, and is staying with OISE London for an intensive four-week course.
Great to meet you Felizitas, how has your time in London been?
I love feeling like a Londoner rather than as a tourist, as I did on my last visit. I walk around a lot, get on the underground and explore the city. The parks here are great! Holland Park must be my favourite. It's like a forest in central London, and has a stunning Japanese garden. The weather has been so nice, I've even got a London tan! There are so many amazing areas that are completely hidden from view, little back streets far outside the touristy areas that I try to avoid. I like to pretend I'm a Londonder and find my own way around. I'm obviously not but I try to see the city as local people do.
Why do you want to improve your English now?
Studying Business Administration in Switzerland, I have the opportunity to go on exchange for a year with my university, which I want to do in an English speaking country, as my current course is in German. I would love to go to Harvard if my grades are good enough, or San Diego, or to Australia. I travel a lot so speaking fluent English is very useful.
How do you think your English has changed since you arrived?
As it's all I've been doing for the past three weeks, I feel so much more confident. When I first got here, I would speak very quietly if I didn't know the word, and now I speak like a waterfall. Before this course, I was using a very simple vocabulary and was very conscious of making any mistakes. I learned no English in school in Germany. You could add up my English lessons over the past three school years and it would be the same amount of lessons I've had here in three weeks. I've been doing lessons one-to-one with different teachers from 9 in the morning to 5 in the afternoon every day, so I think I've improved a lot.
Felizitas is heading to Harrod's with her tutor Felina to have an English lesson while shopping for her family back home.
Did you participate in the Social Programme at the school?
I did in the first week. It was a great way to get a feel for the place and to meet people. On the first day, we got together and went sightseeing on the Thames, there were lots of people there; and on the Friday, we went to the pub with all the students and teachers for dinner. I didn't have as much use for it the following weeks as I felt pretty comfortable on my own.
How is your accommodation?
I live in student halls, it's pretty central and it only takes me about twenty minutes to get to school. Everyone has their own room and bathroom and we share a kitchen with other students. There is a gym there too, not that I'm using, it but it's there!
How do you think speaking English fluently will impact your future?
I am more open to speaking with people, so I am more open to meeting people in general. This is also great for presentations and for employment later on, because the teachers help me with financial English, especially as this is what I am studying in Switzerland.
Do you have any tips for future language learners?
Tutorials, which are one-to-one with a tutor, are great for improving your English very quickly, but Quatorials are ideal for meeting new people. I think if you come here on your own, as I did, being alone is not an issue. If you come for a longer time, I would advise you to take a Quatorial course first, which is taught with up to four students in a group, to feel more safe and social in a new place - and then do the tutorial course.
Get in touch with OISE London to find out more