Eight Hamilton students participated in a new Spanish immersion tutoring program titled ¡vamos hablando! this semester. In conjunction with the Community Outreach & Opportunity Project (COOP) and partnering with local Westmoreland Middle School, volunteers helped eighth grade students improve their Spanish language conversational skills.

Working with eighth grade Spanish teacher Sarah Castiglione, Hamilton student volunteers planned activities such as charades and Lotería (Mexican bingo) to create a fun environment for students to practice new phrases and vocabulary words. The ¡vamos hablando! volunteers also prepared cultural dishes such as flan, salsa and chocolate for the Westmoreland participants.

James Mesiti ’17, who founded the program, said that “¡vamos hablando! was a great way to not only get Hamilton students out serving in the local community but also was amazing in how it got the participants excited about learning about a new language and new cultures.”

Over the course of the semester, Mesiti and student volunteers Jeremy Acosta '17, Jackie Bussgang '19, Laura Hornby '20, Brenda Narvaez '17, Angelica Ramos '20, Kelly Watts '17 and Cedar Weyker '17 were able to build lasting relationships with the students of Westmoreland and are excited to see the program continue into the future.

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