Jan 29

Students of the Month – January 2023

January 29, 2023

Luisa – Age 9


Luisa has a consistently positive attitude and desire to help her peers and teachers in any way she can. She clearly loves to learn and has a passion for and takes pride in the work she does at the center. She loves making art for everyone and is a positive role model for younger students. She is kind, generous, and a joy to be around.

Like many students at the Skid Row Learning Center, Luisa has had to adapt to a new country, a new language, and a new school. Despite the challenges, she never loses that positive and optimistic attitude. She works hard at her studies, takes initiative to push herself out of her comfort zone, and finds such joy in the work and projects she does.

Luisa is a kind and generous soul who imagines a bright and positive future for herself where she can help others. We have learned so much from her kindness, generosity, and positive impact on those around her. The bright light in her keeps her going even on days when she struggles (i.e. her allergies!). We are so proud of her here at the Skid Row Learning Center.

– Leigh Beaulieu, Tutor

Joseph – Age 16


Joseph is so hard-working, resilient, and dedicated. Not only does he do very well in school — despite the challenges of having left his own country, English not being his first language, and all the normal challenges of starting high school — he provides excellent care for his two little brothers and is a strong and positive role model for them. Every day he shows up for them, greets them with love and affection, makes sure they are on task, helps them with their homework if needed after doing his own, and guides them and other young students he cares for back to the shelter where they live, an hour bus ride away, all by himself. He never complains, never misses a day, is never late, and he does it all with a never faltering positive and kind attitude. To say I am so proud of him would be an understatement. Joseph is extraordinary. 

When Joseph first came to the Skid Row Learning Center he was shy and very self-conscious about his English skills. He struggled with his self-esteem and didn’t open up much. One of the first assignments I gave him was to write a story about anything he wanted. He very passionately dedicated himself to writing a beautiful love story that revealed much about his character and kind heart. This story became a beautiful doorway for him to open up and discuss his thoughts and ideas. As his trust grew he began to share more, revealing what a wonderful human being he is. His English is rapidly improving as he feels more confident taking risks; now he is even learning some French and Korean as he discovers a passion for languages. 

With his positive and bright outlook, I believe Joseph will accomplish everything he sets his heart to. He will do well in school, he will go to college if that’s what he chooses, and he will travel and learn languages. I know he can do it all! I have learned so much from Joseph, especially what it means to be kind, good, and positive even if the world around you sometimes is not. Knowing him has made me a better educator and a better human. 

– Leigh Beaulieu, Tutor

Ian – Age 7


What makes Ian special is his sense of humor. He loves to laugh and is so great to be around.

A big challenge for Ian is memorization. I knew he struggled with learning his letters in the past, so every time we met I would ask him to recite the whole alphabet. Then I would draw out random letters and ask if he could name them. With his participation and hard work, Ian’s retention has greatly improved over the course of just one month.

Ian’s biggest dream is to be a firefighter. He also told me that he wants to be an astronaut. I think the biggest thing I’ve learned from Ian is how to be patient; he can be very energetic, so I’ve been able to practice patience while helping him stay focused and engaged.

– Farzad Ahmed, Tutor

Masai – Age 8


What makes Masai special is that he is always wanting to do his best and gets very excited once he learns something that has been challenging. Initially, reading comprehension was challenging, so we worked on it by practicing test taking skills. I have noticed that when he takes his time on the questions he has been more successful.

Masai hopes to work hard so that he can graduate to middle school and high school. He hopes to attend college in the future and to play sports in college.

With Masai I have learned to be very patient. As we are working remotely, it is easy to get distracted, but when I give him enough time to think about a question, often he can answer it.

– Tiana Shambayati, Tutor