Damian caught up with me this morning to have a chat about his experience of the FCE preparation course and his life in Byron Bay. Damian was an absolute pleasure to have in the school and is always a very charming and humourous student. Thanks for sharing Damian.
Please tell us a little bit about yourself and where you are from…
My name is Damian and I am from a small village in Switzerland near Luzern.
What did you do back at home and what made you decide to come to Australia?
In Switzerland I was a employee in an insurance company as an apprentice. I decided to come to Australia to take a break after my education and to improve my English.
How long have you been at GV Byron and what are you studying?
I studied at GV Byron Bay for 12 weeks in the FCE preparation course. It was extremely interesting and I learnt a lot of things. It was interesting because I met a lot of people from all over the world and we had a chance to share our own cultures with each other which was very nice.
My teacher was Andrew. I would really like to say that he is the best teacher I have had. He is a very motivating teacher, lively with a great sense of humour and terrible fashion sense! (although, we have now bought him a beautiful island shirt and he looks much better!)
What do you plan to do when you have completed your studies with us?
I finished two days ago and I am now going to enjoy my time in Byron Bay for the next three weeks. After that I will spend a week in Sydney and then very sadly I have to say good bye to Australia and go back to the snow and the cold.
What has been the single best moment that you have experienced since you joined GV Byron?
Wow. This is such a hard question as there have been so many good moments. Actually, there really isn’t specific moment. I have enjoyed meeting people from all over the world so much as it has opened my mind and my world the different opportunities that exist on this lovely planet.
What is your favourite place in Byron?
Probably the lighthouse or the rails (and I don’t drink!!) There is some great live bands playing every night and it’s good to go and hang out with your friends after studying all day!
Is there anything you’d like to add??
I would like to tell everyone to have the time of your life in the most easterly point of Australia at GV Byron Bay!
How long have you been teaching at GV Byron Bay and what did you do before you worked here?
Hi.. I’m Debs. I’ve been here for just over a month and before that I was teaching in England in a coastal scenic town on the east coast. Funnily enough it is also the most easterly point of England.
Do you speak another language and what was your biggest challenge when learning it?
I speak a little bit of Spanish. My biggest challenge when learning Spanish was the fact that I wasn’t doing an immersion programme and learnt it at home. This meant that I wasn’t surrounded by the language and therefore couldn’t practice as much as I would have liked to have. I think the students here at GV are really lucky to have this opportunity.
Which class are you teaching at the moment?
I am teaching the pre-intermediate class who are lovely and fantastic. They are a very enthusiastic bunch whop are a pleasure to teach
Please tell us about a student in your class who you feel has made outstanding progress…
All of my students are great and it’s incredibly difficult to choose one. Hmm.. really.. Just to pick one, well, I guess Marco. Marco gave us all a real surprise today by writing a heartfelt poem revealing a real talent and understanding of the nuances of English.
What do you most enjoy about teaching at GV Byron Bay?
I enjoy being surrounded by such a collegial environment and to have so many students from such an international base. The students really improve unbelievably quickly and that’s fascinating to watch.
If you weren’t a teacher, what job do you think you would be doing now?
I would be a diving instructor.
What do you like most about living in Byron Bay?
The weather and being so close to the beach.
What is your favourite café, restaurant, shop or place in Byron ?
The top shop.
Aron very kindly made us all Bulgogi. This a traditional Korean dish. Normally this is cooked on a convex metal pan with a whole in the top so that the juices can flow down into a small tray and soak the meat. Usually the whole family sits around a low table and enjoy the great food, with, if they are lucky some wonderful Ginseng whiskey.!
This morning the Intermediate and Pre-Intermediate class went down to the market to practice their English in a real world environment. As you can see it was lots of fun and was a great way to get our morning coffee!