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Student Spotlights

Meet Sally

Image of Sally

Spotlight on Sally

Sally had everyone laughing -- and crying -- when she shared her story.


Congratulations to Sally, an LVSC student, who gave a humorous and heartfelt speech to a crowd of 80 supporters and friends at LVSC’s 2022 Fall Soiree at the Montgomery Library.  Sitting next to her LVSC tutor, Lois, it was obvious that the two share a warm and trusting relationship that has allowed Sally to find the confidence to meet her literacy goals.

You could hear a pin drop as Sally spoke. She explained that she is originally from Costa Rica and now lives in Somerset County with her husband and three young sons.  She said that before she started working with an LVSC tutor, she felt very sad, depressed, and afraid to leave her house. 

Living here and not speaking English is terrible. Because you are invisible. You are invisible for the people, You are invisible for the teachers. You are invisible for all.

With Lois’ guidance and encouragement, Sally can now make phone calls in English, help other parents at her children’s school who do not speak English, ask for information at a store, and attend medical appointments without her husband.

Sally’s story about finding the courage to order food at a McDonalds drive-thru showed how simple tasks, that many take for granted, can be a real challenge for non-native speakers.  Driving up to the window, Sally said to herself, “this is my time.”  After successfully ordering burgers and fries, her sons were really impressed with her newfound English skills. 

My children were very happy and said, 'We really like this mom who is not afraid to speak in English.' At that moment…I cried.

Sally paid tribute to her LVSC tutor Lois:

Thank you for being my tutor and helping me grow by little achievements with me.  Working with you has given me security, tranquility, confidence in myself, and you have laughed and cried with me, in my small and great advances, which has motivated me to move forward.

Sally (center) with husband Yeison and LVSC tutor Lois.

And Sally gave thanks to both LVSC and her family:

I would like to thank LVSC for making this possible, and especially my husband for confirming in me, my three sons for always motivating me and saying that they love this new mother who overcomes her fears.

Update, December 2023

Sally is a new U.S. citizen! She worked very hard studying for her interview with Lois and her citizenship tutor, Allison. Success! Three days after passing her test, Sally volunteered to help another LVSC student preparing for her interview and test. We're so happy for you, Sally.