Mr Andy Wise has been teaching choral music at Chester College in the 2015-16 academic year. He has also been the Dorm Parent in the boys´ boarding house. In the course of this interview, we hope that we may all learn a bit more about him!
Q: Mr Wise, could you tell us a bit about your background. Where are you from? Where did you study?
A: I was born and grew up in Portsmouth, England. I went to Southeastern England to Canterbury for university, where I spent a few years before moving back home and then to Spain.
Q: What made you decide to study Music? What instruments do you play?
A: I think it has always interested me a lot as a practice. But, the main reason is because I enjoy it. I play the guitar, the saxophone, bass guitar, keyboard, …
Q: What made you come to Spain and teach English here?
A: I wanted to come to Spain to learn a bit of Spanish, actually. I think I’ve also gathered a very profound interest in travel, since I haven’t done much in my life. I just wanted to go out and see the world a bit while I’m still young.
Q: Is this the first time you’ve been to Spain?
A: No, no it’s not my first time in Spain, although it is my first time working in Spain.
Q: What do you think about Spain?
A: I love it, actually. I think Galicia is pretty beautiful and that the people are great and that the culture is fantastic and so rich. My eyes have been opened the past few months by living here.
Q: What are the main similarities and differences between Spain and the UK?
A: Well, the biggest difference I suppose culturally speaking is that you’re very hospitable people and you’re very welcoming and friendly. I suppose people are generally a little more on guard in the United Kingdom. As for a similarity, I was actually quite shocked to see how different we were.
Q: What did you like the most about Santiago?
A: Personally, it reminds me a lot of Canterbury and I think it’s a very cosmopolitan area. The people seem very interesting and I love the food. I am very keen on my seafood so being in Galicia has been a treat for me.
Q: What have you learnt after teaching at an international school in Spain?
A: I think I’ve developed an admiration for the students in this particular international school. The tenacity of their work ethic is outstanding. I’m also very impressed and humbled by the bilingual aspect of it. You don’t get that in English schools and the fact that the students here can be so competent with languages, both English and Spanish, is also very humbling.
Q: How is it different from a regular school in England?
A: Well, its got a little personality, which I guess a lot of private schools do. I think there are more similarities, especially with private schools in England, which also offer day and boarding school. I like how Galician and Spanish cultures are prioritized in this school; I think it’s very important to be aware of your roots and to embrace them.
Q: Has Chester influenced you in making the decision to continue pursuing a career in teaching?
A: Yes, yes it has, positively. I find it rewarding and I feel like if I could do it everyday of my life, it would be fantastic…
– Santiago Rosón (Grade 10)