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Haverhill Woman Finds Success with ESL Program

Submitted by on October 25, 2019 – 2:38 pm
Kiara Santana Rosario sits at a computer in a computer classroom.

Kiara Santana Rosario took ESL courses to prepare to enter an associate degree program.

When Kiara Santana Rosario came to the United States from the Dominican Republic, she was 18-years-old. She lived in Mattapan for five months, and then moved to Haverhill. She spoke only basic English, and was a bit anxious about learning the language as the English spoken in in her country was different than what she was hearing here, but she knew she wanted to learn. When a social worker told her about Northern Essex Community College, she decided to check it out – and then things started to change.

She enrolled at Northern Essex in the ESL program, testing into Intermediate ESL. Then she took classes in reading, listening/speaking, and writing/grammar. “I still practice English, by listening to music in English, watching movies in English, and speaking English with my brother and sister,” she says.

The best things about Northern Essex, Santana Rosario says, are the teachers, and the skills it gave her to find a job. “The teachers were excellent, they were always pulling for us, and they were very helpful,”she says. “Northern Essex helped me a lot with my English, and it also gave me the opportunity to work,” she adds. Santana Rosario works part time as an administrative assistant at The Scrubbing Company, a cleaning company in Lawrence, while also attending Northern Essex.

Her studies and hard work have paid off, and this fall she is taking college-level courses, including accounting, her first class in her future career field. She wants to complete her associate degree, and then transfer for her bachelor’s degree. She hopes to one day help people translate documents and tax forms and work as a tax accountant.

For more information on the college’s ESL Program, visit the website or contact Amy Cameron, ESL curriculum coordinator, 978 655-5815 or