The confidence to succeed

Marie owned a small food store in Haiti. While she was a successful businesswoman, it made her a target for robberies. Concerns for her personal safety made it hard to enjoy her success. In 2011, she decided to start over and join her sister in Massachusetts.

Marie did not know any English and relied heavily on her sister. She planned on finding work as a maid, but her sister, a nurse, encouraged her to become a Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA).

She picked up as much English as she could by watching TV and asking questions. By the time she came to The Immigrant Learning Center in 2013, she had learned enough to start in Level 3. Although she learned an astonishing amount on her own, she didn’t really become proficient until she learned grammar, sentence structure, pronunciation and more at The ILC. It gave her the skills and confidence she needed. According to Marie, “If you don’t have confidence, even if you know, you won’t speak. If you have confidence in yourself, you can do it.”

Marie has been working as a CNA for several years now. She recently changed her schedule so she can work weekends and attend school during the week. She plans to become a registered nurse like her sister.

Thank you for your ongoing support that makes stories like Marie’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 for some recent acts of kindness:

Maryam Bajoghli for writing research abstracts for our Immigration Research and
Information Library.

Dr. Adriana Zubieta for helping us translate research data into understandable information in
our upcoming immigration fact sheet series.

Andrew Koppel for remembering The Immigrant Learning Center in his will.

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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