The English Speaking Club (ESC)
The English Speaking Club (ESC), which has been functioning 20 years already, has had a great success in creating interesting, creative and challenging atmosphere for young people to reveal their special interests and abilities and to spend their free time in a friendly environment The club aims to develop the students’ English language skills and cultural awareness through various out-of-class activities like drama, music, games, debates, conferences etc. It provides the young people with a good opportunity to enrich their knowledge of the English world, its culture, art, literature and what is most important, to manage their leisure time in an interesting way.
HHH is the emblem of the Club which means that the members of the Club put their hearts, heads and hands together while participating in the Club activities.
The club is headed by a President, 2 Vice-Presidents, Treasurer and Membership Secretary who are all elected.
The Club is very popular not only with the University students. It has won national as well as international recognition. The most significant thing is that the knowledge gained in the club contributes to the development of the city of Kutaisi, expanding its business links and introducing Georgian culture and history to people in different parts of the world. Thanks to the activities of the ESC, Kutaisi students have an opportunity of gaining educational experience and to use it for integrating our country into the civilized world.
The ceremony of admitting first-year students to the English Club is a real festival. The students sing Georgian, British and American anthems and the Medieval Student Anthem - GAUDEAMUS and first-year students take an ESC oath promising to use the knowledge acquired at the University for the prosperity of our nation.
The following sections function at the Club: Drama, English, Choir, Debate, Translation
The Club hosts annual conferences on British, American and Georgian Studies for the Universities as well as for High schools and Lycee students of Kutaisi.
The most common event has been meetings with guests from English Speaking Countries.
The students join the sections according to their abilities and interests.
Many students do enjoy joining the Drama Section. Scenes from famous English and American playwrights’ works are staged. Most favourite among them are Shakespeare’s works, like Romeo and Juliet, King Lear, Hamlet, The Tame of the Shrew, Bernard Shaw’s Pygmalion etc. Shakespeare’s sonnets and many other poems from British and American Anthologies are also very popular with the club members. In 2005 a grand show was arranged by the ESC members in the Kutaisi Opera House where the amateur actors and actresses performed different scenes from Shakespeare’s comedies and tragedies on stage. The performance was dedicated to the 15th anniversary of the Kutaisi-Newport Twinning and was attended by many Georgian and overseas guests. It was really a very great success.
The members of the English Choir enjoy learning English and American folk songs. There are trios, duets and solos performed as well. Many pop songs are also learnt and performed. There is always lots of music at the meetings of ESC.
Those who are creative and good at translating join the Translators Section of the Club. A number of good translations are listened to at the meetings of ESC. Recently the Club initiated the publishing of an almanac titled BILINGUA which had the best translations done by the students. Translations, especially poetry, are done from English into Georgian and vice versa The young authors feel happy to see their works published and are encouraged to explore and expand their activities.
The members of the Debate Club acquire creative and critical thinking skills and debate techniques. Recently the members of the debate club arranged a conference which proved very active and interesting. In July 2003 the club organized a Summer Student Camp for schoolchildren in Brotseula. Here the students facilitated trainings, tournaments and debates on National Development Programmes, classes in dancing, fishing on the lake and discos in the evenings. The student-debaters attended the training course in Tbilisi. Later on they participated in the 9th National Student Parliamentary Debate Tournament held in Tbilisi in spring 2003 where the Kutaisi debaters won a great deal of recognition. In autumn 2003 the club held a conference on War and Peace issues, which reflected the participants’ vision of war-related problems and their solution. The students expressed their opinions freely and demonstrated independent and critical approach to these issues.
Under the supervision of the teachers of the English Studies Department the students majoring in English arrange an annual conference on American and English Studies. They present papers in English on various cultural and cross-cultural topics. All participants receive Certificate of Thanks for participation and there are special certificates recognizing the top groups. The English Speaking Club (ESC) also hosts annual conference in English for the High schools in Kutaisi.
The ESC initiated a number of good traditions in the University. One of them is meeting with overseas guests from English speaking countries. This is one of the most exciting and unforgettable parts of the Club activities. Among the guests are honourable people like: ambassadors (Great Britain, US,) consuls, Mayors of different cities, principals and professors of different colleges and Universities from all over the world, scientists, government representatives, artists, journalists, musicians, representatives of International NGOs working in Georgia, etc. The meetings with ESC members are held in a friendly and relaxed atmosphere and ideas on young people’s problems and aspirations are shared. The ‘Guestbook’ of the Club contains records of numerous ESC visitors who express their admiration of the Club activities. Here are some of them:
Thank you for a wonderful performance. The club has much impressed me, not only for its knowledge of English, but also for its great enthusiasm for singing songs, reciting poetry and performing drama… Many thanks. Best of luck to you all.
The first British Ambassador in Georgia
Thanks for the talented and lively students and members of HHH*. You made me feel like a Queen. Good fortune to you all and keep studying.
Deborah Barnes Jones
British H. M. Ambassador
What a wonderful Club you have. I will always remember my visit and was impressed by the skills of your members With best wishes.
Pro Vice Chancellor, University of Wales, Newport
Thank you for allowing me to visit your club and for your hospitality. Your English is great. I enjoyed your debates, songs and performances very much. You made the visit fun and interesting. Keep up the good work. You have a fine University and live in a wonderful town.
Mayor of Columbia, Missouri, the USA
I am very impressed with your club and its members. If my students were as enthusiastic and eloquent, I would be a happier professor. I wish you all the best and I hope we can all stay in touch and in partnership.
Professor Michael Barton
American Studies, Pennsylvania State University
ESC arranges festivals and celebrations on Christmas, New Year’s Day, Easter Holiday etc. They fill the students’ life with much excitement.
The ESC provides its members with a good opportunity to make new friends and get to know each other closer.
I find ESC very interesting and exciting. It definitely helps me to improve my English skills and learn a lot about the customs and traditions of the English speaking countries. Here I have made friends with many students and have met many interesting and honourable people. After joining the Club I am a more active and sociable person. The friendly, busy atmosphere with various interesting out-of-class activities is a good challenge for us. It’s a real fun.
a student of IT and English
This opinion is shared by almost everyone who joins the ESC.
The Students' English Club functioning at the Department helps students get over language difficulties, develop self-confidence, professionalism, improve communication skills, and gives an opportunity for students to have a more creative and individual approach to learning English.