English language has played a crucial role in my life. It is a basic foundation to my success, and I am always thankful for that.
I was first sent to learn A.B.C when I was in 5th grade, while at the same time I was taking French class. And I don’t know why my parents sent me to English school all of a sudden. It was very tough to absorb two languages at that age. I could not catch up with either one of them.
Later on, I was sent to live with my aunt in Phnom Penh because they believe I would have a better academic learning experience, without even asked for my permission. When I arrived there, I study Khmer in the morning at a famous private school (Beltie High School), and I joined full time English class at AIIS (if I am not mistaken). I gave up learning French as I told my parents I don’t like the language.
For the whole year, I performed well in Khmer class, ranked the 3rd. However, my English was still not improved, it was so-so. Not until I moved to the United State in the following year, I started to find English very important to me.
It was already too late, I went to the United Stated with a very limited English. I could say it was elementary level. Surprisingly, I was admitted to the 6th grade there. I didn’t even know how to read properly, not to mention English grammar. Geeezz it was so so suck back then. I could score high only in Mathematics, as it doesn’t require much reading, it was number-based. However, when it comes to reading, I had no idea what those strange words were, I was not familiar with, I was like a 1st grade student trying to read letter one by one.
I remember my cousins gave me several books to read. I had no idea what it was about. I tried to read the first few pages, and I highlighted almost all words in each sentence. It was like a color painting though.
Time passing by, I have finished one semester there, with not a really bad result tho. Unfortunately, due to some problems I had to move back to Cambodia, and decided to come back to homeland, Siem Reap province, to continue my high school.
May be my parents still seeing French language important for me, they sent me back to bilingual class, which I had to dig up my French language that I abandoned for about three years. It was not easy at all. It required me to study both French and Khmer on some subjects such as Mathematics, Physics, and Biology etc… Anyway, I still managed to be the first ranked in that class.
No matter busy I was with Bilingual class, I never quit learning English language in part time. I felt like I really enjoy going to English class, and talking in English.
Within several years in High school, I was able to finish 3 English schools consecutively (ACE, FBI, and PUC) earning certificates of recognition.
I had no idea how important English language was until I entered university life. Most of opportunities need English language, for example, entrance exams or scholarships.
With an average level of English proficiency, I was able to study in Institute of Foreign Languages, while at the same time I abandoned French language again until now. That was sad though… but seem like I have nothing to do more with it.
As times goes by, I’ve been given many opportunities to travel abroad, learn different cultures, and experience things I cannot find in classroom.
It creates job opportunities, translator, interpreter, writer, reporter, and a lot more.
When I take a look back at all of those opportunities, I came to realize that English language was behind all my success. It helps me to achieve my dreams.
Without English language, I am like a frog in a well, drowning hopelessly in the ocean of strangers. It connects me to the colorful world beyond my expectation. It allows me to view things in a different perspective. I love how I can make a quick communication with people coming from different background. It is an open door to countless opportunities…
I’d love to express my sincere gratitude to my parents for investing in my education, and I never forget all the teachers out there, whom I can’t thank enough. You’ve all been incredible…
I’m not saying our national language is not important, but if you know English language; it’s like a big bonus for your future career as well as academic journey.
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