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ELC - English Language Center Santa Barbara
Student Spotlight – Tulio Castillo February 19th, 2020

Tulio Castillo is from Guatemala and has been studying for 6 weeks in our IELTS Preparation Course. He is well known for his sense of humor in class. Tulio has a special talent in math and problem solving. Tulio chose to study in Boston because of its diversity. After ELC, he would like to continue working as an entrepreneur and apply for an MBA in Boston.

Where were you born and raised? Give us a mental picture of the place(S): 

I’m from a small town in Guatemala, Central America. I lived there all my life until I had to study at the university. Then, I moved to Mexico. My hometown is rural. We still have farmlands with many animals. The majority of the people say  “good morning” if they see you in the street even if they don’t know you. Five minutes from the center of the town, we have pyramids of a former Mayan city.

What do you do for fun? What are your hobbies? 

I used to hangout with my friend and also I enjoyed driving my car while listening to music. I like to work out and I enjoy a good run. 

What is your special talent? 

Well, I think I have a special talent for numerical things. For example, I enjoy doing math and applying problems. 

What is your profession? What do you like about it? 

I’m a business developer and entrepreneur. The thing that I enjoy the most is that I do what I like and also earn money while doing it. My profession has helped me to create opportunities for other people. 

Tell us about your family, do you have kids? Siblings? Pets? Do they live close to you? 

I have one older brother and one younger sister. I’m single. And the family has three dogs. My brother lives in Madrid, Spain with his wife and my sister is living in Mallorca, Spain. 

Why did you choose to study English in Boston ? Did you consider other options? 

I chose Boston because I have been here three times and I liked it. And, also  I’m planning to do my master’s degree in Boston. I also like the diversity here. Washington DC was the second option. 

What are all the ways that Boston is different than your city/town? 

Boston is so different from my hometown town in many ways. First, we only have two seasons, summer and winter. But, our winter is not as extreme as Boston’s winter. Another important difference is that in my hometown everything is so close. For example, you only need to drive for a few minutes to visit a restaurant.

What were you most surprised to learn about the US or Boston ]? Did you experience any culture shock? 

I visit the US at least once per year, so I didn’t have a cultural shock. But, what most surprised me was that dinner is the biggest meal of the day and in my case I usually don’t have dinner. 

What do you miss most about your country? 

Definitely the weather, we have mild weather. 

I also miss some traditional food. In Guatemala, we eat hand made tortillas every day. 

What are your top three favorite places in Boston ? 

My favorite places are Boston Common, Harvard Square, and Seaport. 

Where have you found the best food from your country in Boston ? 

I don’t know, I have not been in a Guatemalan restaurant in Boston. I think you could have good Latin food in Cambridge, near Harvard Square. 

Favorite moment in class at ELC: 

Quizzes. I like to test my knowledge. 

What are some tips you have for people who want to learn English

Make some non-English speaking friends so you are forced to speak English. Also, try to pay attention to native speakers to improve your pronunciation. 

What are your plans after ELC? 

My plans are to return to Guatemala, continue working, and apply to do an MBA in the US or UK this September.