McKinley Park Candidates Guide

Trainers and volunteers from Aquinas Literacy Center's most recent online tutor training session include, from left to right, starting in the top row, tutor Cinda Villanueva, Aquinas Executive Director Alison Altmeyer, Sara Salazar, Sr. Janis Haustein, Program Coordinator Tina Villapando, Associate Director Sabrina Poulin, Dorit Stark-Riemer, Bridget Taylor, Matt DeCaro, Susan Kelley, Deena Hassaballa and tutor Sr. Susan Stucki.

English Tutor Training Moves Online for Aquinas Literacy Center

Published March 12, 2021

The COVID-19 pandemic has not stopped the Aquinas Literacy Center or its volunteers in their mission to provide free English language training to adult learners from its headquarters in Chicago's McKinley Park neighborhood. The program continued with another batch of volunteers progressing through a training process, now conducted online, to connect them one-on-one with local residents who wish to learn English.

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"Without the support of many volunteers, Aquinas would not be able to carry out its mission of empowering adults to learn English and become more engaged in their community," said Aquinas Associate Director Sabrina Poulin. The new batch of volunteers will "help address the critical societal need of adult education in English as a Second Language," she said.

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The seven new volunteers for Aquinas completed their training over the weekend of March 6, 2021, adding to the cadre of trained volunteer tutors who engage with adult learners for 60 to 90 minutes per week over online videoconference or at the center at 1751 W. 35th St., Chicago.

Intense Need

The need for more volunteers is intense, Poulin said, as there are currently more than 25 people waiting to be matched with a tutor so they can learn English. The next English Literacy Tutor Training takes place from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday, April 24, 2021, with another English Literacy Tutor Training following on July 10, 2021. Volunteer trainees must register in advance.

For more information, contact Poulin by sending email to or calling (773) 927-0512.

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McKinley Park Neighborhood Candidates Guide