From Alejandro, who attended QSoE in 1974-75:
A couple of pictures from 1974-1975. I was studying Engineering at Queens so I did it for 3 years the Summer School of English.
From HyunSu (S. Korea), who attended QSoE in 1997:
I was a Queens' ESL student back in 1997 and I still remember clearly great teachers (their names were Tuula and Kevin) classes, foreign friends, mini-Olympic games, picnics, hockey games, Ottawa Winterlude and many events.
I stayed at Jean Royce Hall (Unit 301), West Campus and every time I went to school in the morning, I was very happy even though tough homework made a lot of stresses sometimes. Through Queens' ESL experience and enjoying Canadian culture I made a plan to study more in US to get a master's degree. In the middle of US study for master's degree, I revisited my "second" hometown Kingston, Ontario in 2006. I was so happy because everything was just same compared to 1997. Attractive Princess street, Lake Ontario, football field, small cafes, 2nd hand shops, and Stuffer library.....Actually I kept my Queens' student plastic ID card as my lifetime memory and I really miss Queen's ESL every day and every night. I hope I can be there again soon!
From Alberto (Peru), who attended QSoE in 2002:
'To learn English as a second language'... that's what I thought I came to Canada for 10 years ago. I learned a lot more than just English. I learned to establish great friendships with people from other cultures. Together we learned about our customs, music, foods, dances... I also learned a great deal about myself and life in general.
I left my native country of Peru in 2002 and I came to Canada for a 3-month Spring/Summer session. It's now 2012 and I am still in Canada! I must admit that I fell in love with this country and the wonderful people. After completing the 2002 Spring/Summer and 2002 Fall sessions at the QSoE I was accepted at the Faculty of Applied Science at Queen's University.
The dedication of my QSoE teachers, student monitors and my desire to achieve my goals made this very possible. I graduated with a Bachelors degree in Mining Engineering in 2006 and was awarded the F.K. McKean, Science '40', Prize - Awarded to the student in Mining Engineering who best demonstrated good written communication in their final year thesis. I have no doubt that the lessons I received at the QSoE helped me to achieve this. After graduating from Queen's University I moved out west to - beautiful - British Columbia where I work, met my wife and live a very happy life with her.
During these 10 years I've been fortunate enough to have traveled by land all across Canada (Except for PEI, Labrador/Newfoundland and Nunavut, all of which I will visit in the future). No doubt Canada is vast, beautiful and friendly.
As I mentioned, I made great friends while attending the QSoE and to these days I still keep in close contact with. I've visited them in their home towns and home countries around the world. I must say that when we recall the days when we attended the QSoE the room is full of smiles and laughter :)
Thank you Queen's School of English for giving me, and many others, the opportunity to not only learn English as a second language but also for the wonderful memories and priceless friendships that were created during our student time. I cherish all those moments fondly.
Happy 70 years!
From Jim, who worked at QSoE as a socio-cultural monitor in 1992:
I read about the School of English 70th anniversary in the Queen's Alumni Review. I worked as a monitor in the summer of 1992 and it was one of my most cherished memories of Queen's. It was a job that taught me so much in terms of taking ownership of a project, responsibility for the SoE students, enforcing discipline (both in the dorms and in terms of only speaking English) and learning about how to teach in the language labs to a non -native speaker.
I was very grateful for the opportunity to meet many wonderful students who allowed me to learn about their culture. I also made lasting friendships with my fellow co- monitors.
After graduating from Queen's, I graduated with a degree in physical therapy. I now work in Boston and I am married with 2 children (a boy and a girl).
Wishing the QSoE team a happy anniversary.
From Yuriko (Japan), who attended QSoE in 2002-2003:
Congratulations on your 70th anniversary.
You have been contributing a lot to the foreign students in many ways and I am proud of being one of them.
I attended SOE fall 2002 and spring 2003 session, started in your advanced course and moved forward to "super advanced class" when you started this level. I have so many great memories from Queen's SOE. I know many students (including myself) had a difficult time, but your "English Only Rule" helped us improve our communication skills in English A LOT.
In addition, it was great that you hired local students as "monitors" to run some of after-school activities. Another feature I HAVE TO mention about SOE is that all people involved in this course are really remarkable. All of them (without any exception) were really nice, hard workers, and always put the first priority on students. I felt very comfortable although I was thousands miles away from home.
It has been almost 9 years since I left Queen's; however, I still keep in touch with many friends I made there, not only ex-classmates but also some of former teachers, some of the monitors, and my conversation partners. After I left Kingston, as mentioned, I moved to Toronto to take a TEFL course. After I finished all my English schooling in Canada, I got a job at one of subsidiaries companies of my ex-work in the US, and I have been working in Westchester, NY since then. Every day I have a proof that English I learned has been letting me survive in the US in many ways, in my work, my daily activities, etc.
Best wishes on your continuous success in the future.
From Sangela (Brazil), who attended QSoE in 2005-2007:
It is very nice to hear from QSoE. I studied at Queen's from 2005 to 2007. It was one of the best moments of my life, because I met friends from all over the world. I had great teachers and also I really improved my English. Now I am doing Masters in Nursing and the English that I learned at QSoE is helping so much, but as you can see lost some because I don’t practice to much in Brazil.
Anyway, I sent some picture from my classmates and teachers and I miss them so much.
Thanks for the contact.
From Pablo (Chile), who attended QSoE in 2007:
In the 70th aniversary of Queen´s SOE, it´s a pleasure to share my experience in this great school. I wish you guys a really happy aniversary and success to everybody at SOE!
When I was asked to tell about my experience at SOE, I never expected all the thoughts and memories that suddenly appeared while I was trying to write this. I didn´t really notice how deep the experience of going to SOE was until that. In the next lines I will try to describe some of this beautiful feelings.
The first time I was asked about going to Canada was when my dad was talking to my brother Jorge (he lived in Canada for 3 years). He took a course at SOE too and suggested me to go there. Those days I left my Engineering major in order to study Music, my passion, so it appeared as a good option to “add some points to my resumee”, learn about other cultures and visiting my brother. After a few days I was getting my visa and moving to Canada for 4 months.
Once in SOE, funny things started to happen. First of all, the extremely nice experience of sharing not only your classes but your life with people from other counties is a rich and unique experience to learn about people. Just to mention a few memories, I remember a very nice day at “Second Cup Coffee” (a coffee shop placed at downtown) with Rikki from China, with whom I used to talk a lot about music and our plans for after the session. Arturo from Mexico, my “parties and pizza time´s friend”, or Naz, with whom I performed live a song composed by myself for 2007 Variety Night. There was also Ahmed, Meshari, Adam and his great family, Aline, Ale, Eliz, Cathy, Koji, Su Jin, Angel and so many other people that it´s hard to mention them without leaving one outside!!!
Trips are something really nice to remember too. Going to Canada was my first big trip, and the chance of meeting a lot of places was really cool. I remember when I got to see Jimi Hendrix´s guitar, I almost cried! Or when I went to Niagara and met this beautiful waterfalls. Montreal Jazz Festival, the beach, Ottawa… Once again, so many places and stories that it is really hard to describe all of them!
I remember that there was a soccer championship, and Chile played against Canada… on Canada day. During the game a big mess happened and Canada lost the game and some of the players from my country were arrested or something like that… It was a little messy thing and my brother and I were a little worried about people´s reaction. Next day at classes I remember Monti´s (the theacher) joking with me about how good for acting my team was and how they simulated faults in their favor. It was a funny time talking about soccer!
Talking about going abroad means also to talk about frienship. When you are on your own living with people you just met, and with a different cultural background is a chance to go farther and make friends you will never forget. I remember that once we became friends, Rikki and I used to laugh about the fact that when we attended to the first classes, we both thought that we didn´t like each other until we had to make a homework together. Since then we became really good friends.
In the 2007 session I got to share with great people from many places. It was a great time, something I really miss but makes me happy and curious about how and when will I see all that great people again.