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Embassy English 4 May 2017 - by Hakim Horton, Social Activities Leader, Embassy English London

Social Activities at Embassy London


All our students come to our school not only to improve their English but also to experience a new culture and have fun visiting London. That is why at Embassy London we believe that the social aspect of our students’ stay is as important as the academic one… And our social programme is designed to have the best of both worlds – improving English and having fun!

This month we would like to introduce one of our fantastic Social Activities Leaders – Hakim Horton. Hakim has been working at Embassy Greenwich since June 2016 and students always describe him as good fun, interesting and knowledgeable. We caught up with Hakim and asked him a few questions about himself, his job and what tips he would give to students. This is what he told us!
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Michela Scolari: Hakim, tell us a little bit about yourself.

Hakim Horton: Well, I was born in London, but my parents moved me to Kent when I was very little. I lived near Canterbury in Kent until the age of 18 and then moved back to London to study a BA in French and Politics at Queen Mary University. This coming September I am going to start an MSc in Global Politics at LSE and I’m really looking forward to it!

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Before coming to Embassy London, I worked for Embassy Summer at their campuses in Mile End and UCL. At the moment I am working both as an Activities Leader and a Residential Supervisor, which gives me more chances to spend time with our students and help them improve their English and general confidence.

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M: What is your favourite part of your job?

H: I love meeting people from all over the world and learning about different cultures.

I also really enjoy showcasing London and the UK, and that’s why I love taking students out both in Greenwich and in Central London, and to famous places such as Westminster, Covent Garden, Soho and the shopping districts.

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M: How do you think you can help students reach their goals?

H: Well, I think in our school students will always find someone who is from their country and this makes it quite tempting for them to speak their own language. From my own experience, I know how important it is to practise the language you are trying to learn so I always encourage students to interact in English and to tell each other off if someone is resorting to their mother tongue.

I also try and correct their mistakes in a jokingly and subtle way – they really appreciate that! Trust me, I can really see the difference in confidence building and language improvement in those students that not only do well in their classes and study hard, but also make the most of our social programme and always try their best to communicate in English.

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M: What is unique about Embassy English London?

H: Our school in Greenwich is the perfect environment for students to feel at home away from their own home. Greenwich is in London Zone 2 so it is pretty central, but at the same time it has a village-like feel to it and everything is at a stone’s throw.

Students are really relaxed and open to new experiences and new friendships, and they are eager to discover London. This is the main reason why our social programme activities are so popular and very often over-subscribed!

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M:Which activities are the most popular? 

H: Sports are definitely the most popular activities. We generally have basketball, football, swimming and the gym on every week. On a Tuesday morning we also organise a jogging session and sometimes we do yoga.

The second most popular activity is theatre outings and Les Miserables is our bestseller. This is also my favourite show – the music, the dancing, the acting, everything is so perfect and the people on the stage are so talented! We also tend to organise outings to The Globe and those usually sell out very quickly.

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M: What is your advice for students coming to London?

H: I know this will sound obvious, but I would advise to be prepared for unpredictable weather. Always wear layers as it may be sunny when you are going out, but it may cloud over and become quite chilly pretty quickly. Also, do not trust the weather forecast!

I would definitely say that if you are in London you must go to at least one musical and try some of our renowned international restaurants – food is always a good way to socialise and practise your English.

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M: Thanks, Hakim! It’s been a pleasure talking to you… Where are you off to next?

H: Well tomorrow I will have the chance to take our students to Canterbury, where I grew up, so I’m really excited to show my hometown and favourite restaurants/parks to our students! I hope they’ll love it as much as I do!

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To learn more about studying English at exciting Embassy London, contact us today! 

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