Our ESL Center is an award winning program providing volunteer tutors, tutoring space, study materials, computer-assisted instruction, citizenship classes, English classes, and referrals to adult immigrants in the Amherst area.
The ESL Center is the only town (rather than big city) library program named as a model in a special USCIS report Library Services for Immigrants: A Report on Current Practices (PDF).
Libraries for All, an initiative of the European Union, featured the Jones Library ESL Center as a model for civic integration efforts at community libraries. Our program was recognized under "best practices" on the European Union's Libraries for All website.
- Read our ESL fact sheet
- Read our stories
- Watch our tutor and student interviews
- Follow us on Facebook
- Watch a short video (7:18) about the ESL Center produced by Rachel Swansburg, a journalism student at UMass Amherst
- Listen below to a podcast (10:55) about our ESL Center entitled "Amherst Welcomes Newcomers" created by students in the Spring 2020 Sociology of Immigration class at UMass Amherst (read a full transcript)
- Watch the ESL Center portion of Amherst Media's Celebrating Community episode featuring the Jones Library (below)
- Read additional news coverage of our program:
- Older Beginners: Library tailors ESL program to seniors by Lynne Weintraub (American Libraries; June 1, 2023)
- Keeping up with the Jones Library by Margo Pedersen (Amherst Student; May 10, 2023)
- New language program to benefit older immigrants at Jones Library by Scott Merzbach (Daily Hampshire Gazette; January 2, 2023)
- ‘A very long journey’: Twenty-one residents become newly minted citizens at Amherst naturalization ceremony by Scott Merzbach (Daily Hampshire Gazette; October 1, 2021)
- Passing the citizenship test by Marietta Pritchard (Daily Hampshire Gazette; August 25, 2017)
Updated June 2, 2023