Distinguished Guests. Ladies and Gentlemen,
Thank you all for attending this special event—15 years of ELS Language Centers in Panama.
I had the honor of training Sra Aida Quijano at the beginning in 1997 in Santa Monica, California, and of representing ELS Language Centers here in Panama at the opening of the first Center in 1998. I was here also for the 5th anniversary and for the inauguration of the new Center in Plaza Paitilla 4 years ago.
Our company—and of course all of my colleagues who know the people of ELS Panama—are proud of ELS Panama’s many achievements in the field of international education. Why do I say “international education”? Why not “teaching English”? Because the goal for ELS is to help students improve their lives—get better jobs or enter a university—things that create the positive result for them of a better life. In this way, our business is not the commercial selling of English lessons. No, it is empowering students to succeed in life.
ELS Panama has the same strong commitment to their students. This same objective has informed the creation and development of the Center’s activities. Before opening this franchised ELS Language Center, the company here in Panama that would acquire the franchise was already sending students overseas for study-abroad experiences. Study abroad is rich—it changes the student’s life forever. Together with language teaching here in Panama and with educational partnerships, the franchise continues to participate with ELS worldwide as part of our International Pathways for global education.
The next step for ELS Panama with International Pathways, I am happy to announce to you tonight, is receiving the authorization from our company to offer the Certified Intensive English Program—our English for Academic Purposes program recognized by universities around the world as meeting their English proficiency requirement. Thanks to the program we are working together with ELS Panama to bring international students to Panama for both English and university degree programs here in this country. We are working with our counselors in the Latin American region to introduce Panama as a destination country for both language and academic study. We believe the potential that Panama offers is both attractive and unique.
So, now, to recognize ELS Panama’s special achievements and our expectations for their future success, I would like to present Sra. Aida Quijano with our award “15 Years of Commitment to International Education”.
Thank you all for your kind attention,
Charles Gilbert / Vicepresident ELS Language Centers, USA