ESL & Business

Amir Diani

“I love my classmates because they’re always helping me. When I first got here, I didn’t know any English. But now I’m beginning to feel more confident about speaking it.”

Before you begin to judge Amir Diani about his English skills, just consider this: How good are your own skills in Pashtun, Urdu, or even basic Spanish? Getting your education in a foreign country—and in a language not your own—requires a lot of courage and heart and determination. “And I think SMC is just the best for this!” says Amir. “Maybe I can’t speak perfectly, but my English gets better—I hope!—every day.”

Aside from tackling the intricacies of the English language, Amir came to America from Iran for very pragmatic reasons. “Okay, I came here mostly because of business. But first, I must learn this new language before I transfer to a university for my MBA. Maybe to USC or to UCLA. And I think that Mr. Koenig, who I study ESL with, is the best. Anybody who wants to learn English should study with him. All of the time in his classes, everybody is making conversations. We talk about everything. Every day. I think for learning to speak—and maybe to meet other foreign people—this teacher’s classes give you all the help you need.”

Amir says, “I don’t want to go back to Iran. I want to get an American education, and then go to work here. I want to have the chance to make good money, and for that, the US is the best. And I think that maybe next month, my Green Card is ready. And then I will feel very comfortable. Maybe I will feel more like a California guy. Yeah! But so far, I just love the people here. And the weather. I just love everything here. Everything.”

Read more stories from present and past years in the SMC Student Spotlight Archive.​