Love is a universal language, but you need English to succeed in this country

Ronaldo moved to the United States for love. He met his wife, an American who teaches at Tufts, when she brought her dance troupe to Haiti for a month. Ronaldo worked as a policeman by day. At night, he was a security guard at the hotel where she was staying. Although his English was as bad as her Haitian Creole, they fell in love.

In 2015 he moved here to marry and make a life. He started studying English at The Immigrant Learning Center in 2016. His wife thought police work was too dangerous, so Ronaldo got a job at Dunkin’ Donuts while he contemplated his career choices. He had always enjoyed working on cars, so when The ILC counselor told him about a certification program for auto mechanics, he jumped at the chance.

Now, Ronaldo goes to work in the morning, The ILC in the afternoon and mechanic school on the weekend. All of the automotive classes are taught in English. He says, “If it was six months or a year before, I would not understand like I understand now. I feel good because now I can talk a little bit, understand. I can say what I feel. If I want something, I can ask…. The ILC was my very first step and in the future it will help me so much.”

Thank you for your ongoing support that makes stories like Ronaldo’s possible.







Diane Portnoy
Founder and CEO
The Immigrant Learning Center, Inc.

Thank You!

Countless supporters help The ILC give immigrants a voice. Here is a heartfelt thank you to Hayley Kahn from JVS for speaking to ILC students about the Bridges to College program.

About Us 

The Immigrant Learning Center, Inc. (ILC) of Malden, MA, is a not-for-profit organization that gives immigrants a voice in three ways. The English Language Program provides free, year-round English classes to immigrant and refugee adults in Greater Boston to help them become successful workers, parents and community members. The Public Education Institute informs Americans about the economic and social contributions of immigrants in our society, and the Institute for Immigration Research, a joint venture with George Mason University, conducts research on the economic contributions of immigrants. For more information, visit the website at or Facebook page ImmigrantLearningCenter.

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