The school is the brainchild on Jonathan Dykes, who has previously run IH operations in eastern Spain, most notably opening the Barcelona school; and Ariel López who has been director of International House Mexico for more than 20 years. IH described the pair in a press release as “two of International House’s most experienced members”.
“Colombia has a growing economy and is politically stable”
The school has set a high bar of expectation, saying in a release that it hopes to “quickly become one of the leading language training and exams providers in the city”.
Dykes explained Medellín was chosen for its own qualities as a city, but also as another large population centre in a nation that is growing in popularity with tourists and businesses, and is now deemed safe – a marker the nation lost due to decades of narco-trafficking and a bloody civil war.
“Colombia has a growing economy, is politically stable, and we know that the demand for language training and certification is strong from our previous experience in Bogotá [the capital],” he said.
“Medellín is the second largest city in the country and so it’s the logical next step for our expansion. What’s more, it’s a beautiful, dynamic city to work in, as anyone who has been there will tell you,” Dykes added.
Once home to the notorious Medellín Cartel and its leader Pablo Escobar, ‘The City of Eternal Spring’ has re-defined itself since those dark days, and International House hope to take advantage of the city now known as a “hipster destination”.
Ariel López added, “we’re confident that we can attract a good number of exam candidates in Medellín and that many of these people will be only too pleased to take an exam preparation course with us.”
The school will offer a range of English classes, as well as CELTA courses for language teachers. It is also an IELTS and Cambridge Assessment English test centre. It will also be a location for the Test of English for Aviation.