Slowing Economy Leads to Expansion in Learning Other Languages, Announces International House

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Due to increasing difficulty in finding employment, more and more people are turning to re-training in order to improve their job prospects. This has led to boom in people learning other languages in Vancouver, Canada.

At this time of the year we always have people coming in for a tune-up

There is at least one silver lining in the current dark economic clouds. People are going back to school for retraining and upgrading in record numbers. And what they are choosing to study may surprise you.

"Learning another language has always been more valued in immigrant communities," says Jasper Saggu, head of the Modern Languages Department at International House, Vancouver. "We have always had people who want their children to have the best of both worlds, but what we are seeing now is a real surge in learning other languages."

Enrolment at community colleges and continuing education classes is also booming and finding qualified instructors is a challenge even in a multi-cultural city such as Vancouver.

"At this time of the year we always have people coming in for a tune-up," Saggu says. "They want to make sure their basic conversation skills are up to speed before they leave on holidays. Where the real growth now is people who want to enhance their job prospects."

The economic downturn and recent changes to the work and study abroad programs are bringing more and more students to Vancouver, and Canadians are also going abroad in record numbers.

International House, with over 150 affiliated schools in more than 50 countries, is a world leader in language training. The Modern Languages Department at IH Vancouver offers small group classes and one on one tutorials in languages such as Spanish, French, Japanese, Mandarin, German, Portuguese, Italian and Arabic.

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Cameron Prior
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