12 de Marzo 2012
Bogota´s Bilingual Program graduates 504 people and conducts job fair with 2000 positions for its beneficiaries
As part of its mission to facilitate and foster direct foreign investment in Bogota, Invest in Bogota identified that having a strong bilingual population is a must if the city wants to become a more attractive investment destination.
Being bilingual can represent up to a 50% salary increase.
Talk to the World, the bilingual program financed by the District Office for Economic Development, and lead and executed by Invest in Bogota - the agency for the promotion of investment in the city - will graduate 504 city residents of working age, in intermediate and high English levels. The ceremony will be held on March 14th, 2012, at 2:30 p.m., in the Jorge Enrique Molina Auditorium, at the Central University.
The event will be held along with a job fair, where 2000 positions will be offered to the beneficiaries of the Program, by four Bogota-based multinational companies in the BPO industry (Convergys, Bilateral, Teleperformance and Sutherland), and the Bogota Trabaja (Bogota Works) Program.
During the Talk to the World graduation ceremonies in 2011, four multinational companies in the BPO industry offered 3.500 work positions in total, for individuals fluent in English.
Adriana Suarez, Executive Director of Invest in Bogota, stated: "This Program seeks to drive the city's economy, through the creation of jobs". Being bilingual is a key and relevant requirement in human capital, which determines the level of competitiveness in a region, and becomes a driver for its productive transformation.
Thus, it is a determining factor for foreign investment. For the BPO-voice sectors, for example, being bilingual can mean up to a 50% increase in salary conditions (from $600.000 to $1.200.000, approximately). As part of its mission to facilitate and foster direct foreign investment in Bogota, Invest in Bogota identified that having a strong bilingual population is a must if the city wants to become a more attractive investment destination".
Other sectors in which bilingual personnel are in high demand are: corporate and health tourism, oil and gas services, audiovisual production services, research, development and innovation, among others.
The program is 100% in-attendance and focuses on conversation. Its 2008 - 2012 goal is to certify 10.000 at level B2 or higher. As of January, 2012, Talk to the World has already achieved its goal, and has thus far certified 11.112 students as level B2 or above. The program has built a database with approximately 39.000 citizens of Bogota whose English fluency is less than B2, which is a key input for companies seeking bilingual human talent.
Elba Dueñas - Beneficiary of the Program.
It is one of the best opportunities we [the people from Bogota] have been given. Thanks to it [the Program] I was able to improve my English level, and I have received work offers through it. I hope they continue to move forward, especially now that the FTA with the US has been signed. I know that this way, and with your help, unemployment in Colombia will drop.
Ruth García - Beneficiary of the Program.
Thanks to Talk to the World I have an intermediate English level, certified, which has improved my professional profile. This program fosters the economy in Bogota, by training its residents (...) preparing them to speak the global business language.
Edwin Domínguez - Beneficiary of the Program
Talk to the World is an excellent program (...) it gives many people the opportunity to be better trained and improve their academic and professional profile, in order to face the hardening labor world. The method used is very good, and you really make a lot of progress. (...). I hope they continue to support more people, and the program will continue moving forward, as it is something very valuable for Colombians.
Fernanda Giraldo - Beneficiary of the Program
I have been very fortunate to have this course, which has helped me improve my English language skills (...). It is a great investment for the city, since there are many people who speak English at different levels, and this program helps them be better, and helps the growth of our city; it is also a great investment of our tax money.