Foreign languages student Blair Hercules has just landed a customer services role at London Heathrow – the world’s busiest international airport – and says learning Spanish helped him gain his new position!
The ambitious 20-year-old decided to take up Spanish at Kensington and Chelsea College to boost his employability skills, whilst also fulfilling an ambition to learn a second language.
Blair, from Ladbroke Grove, West London, said:
“I think it’s really beneficial to learn a second language. I decided to learn Spanish as I never got the opportunity at school. For me it was a great way to meet new people and learn about a new culture.
Not only has Spanish been useful for social situations but it has also led to better job opportunities. London has a strong international business status so knowing another language is a valuable skill to have.
I think knowing Spanish definitely helped me get the job at Heathrow as I told them I could speak Spanish in the interview. I feel like I’m able to help more customers at the airport because I know a second language.”
As part of the course at the College, Blair covered grammar as well as learning to master conversational Spanish.
Speaking about his course Blair added:
“I loved my Spanish course at Kensington and Chelsea College! The tutors were excellent and really supportive. They helped me gain my confidence in speaking Spanish.
The class was really friendly and full of like-minded people so it was a very encouraging and fun environment to study in. I found learning a new language a really rewarding experience.”
Kensington and Chelsea College is offering free language taster classes, including Spanish which was identified as being one of the most important foreign languages to know for business.
Globally 329 million people speak Spanish as their first language, making it the second most spoken language in the world after Mandarin.*
The British Council’s “Languages for the Future report” ** identified Spanish, French, Arabic, Mandarin Chinese, German, Portuguese, Italian, Russian, Turkish and Japanese as being vital to the UK over the next 20 years.
* Info on stats available on: http://www.languageswork.org.uk/learner_zone/which_language/spanish/facts_and_figures.aspx
**Full report: http://www.britishcouncil.org/organisation/publications/languages-future
Date published: 19 May 2014