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Hola, Somers Students: Learn Spanish This Summer

SOMERS, N.Y. – Somers resident Kaminie Balkaran , who just graduated from Boston University’s School of Management, currently is entangled in the sticky world of job-hunting.

In the meantime, wondering what she could do “besides sit around the house,” she brain-stormed with the staff at the Somers Library. Together, they hit upon teaching a foreign language.

“We lived in the Chicago suburbs when I was little,” Balkaran said, “and I learned Spanish in grades one and two. When we moved back to Somers, language wasn't offered until seventh grade, but then I took it up again and got as far as the AP level in high school.”

She bypassed a language major in college, however, to study marketing and advertising. Her fluency in Spanish continued through music and reading.

“Spanish is a good language to know,” Balkaran said. “It’s the second-most used language in this country. And we get a lot of exposure to the culture.”

Has she ever been to Spain? “I've just come back from a whole week in Barcelona with my best friend,” she said. “When I was 14, I started saving money, though I didn’t know what for. Now, I know what it was for.

“Barcelona was wonderful. But it’s different from other Spanish cities because the main language is Catalan. All the signs are in three languages: Catalan, Spanish and English. It throws you a little.”

Balkaran’s free Spanish lessons at the Somers Library will be available from 1-8 p.m.Mondays, 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesdays, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Wednesdays and 11 a.m. to 8 p.m.Thursdays. Lessons are geared to middle school-aged students and will be arranged by appointment only.

For more information or to set up an appointment, call Kaminie Balkaran at (914) 610-1991 or email kdbalkaran@gmail.com .

Information also is available by calling the library at (914) 232-5717.

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