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ESL Program Meeting

Listening Exercises
Listen to the conversation again by pressing the Play Audio button and read along with the conversation. Review the Key Vocabulary and the sample sentences.

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Randall: Hi Faith. Do you have a minute?

Faith: Sure. What's up?

Randall: Well, I just wanted to go over the schedule for Wednesday's orientation meeting to make sure everything is ready.

Faith: Okay. Here's a copy of the tentative schedule. [Okay.] Now, the registration starts at eight thirty and goes until nine fifteen. [Alright.] Then, the orientation meeting will commence at nine thirty.

Randall: Okay. Now, we had planned originally for the meeting to go until ten thirty, but now we have someone from the international center coming to speak to the students on extracurricular activities, so how about ending the meeting around eleven?

Faith: Fine. And, uh, then students will take the placement tests from eleven fifteen until noon [Okay.], followed by twenty-minute break before lunch. [Okay.] And, immediately after lunch, we have reserved a campus shuttle to give students a forty-five-minute tour starting at one thirty. [Oh. Okay.] We want to show students around the university, including the union building, the library, and the student services building.

Randall: Great. Now, how about the oral interviews?

Faith: Well, we're planning to start them at two fifteen.

Randall: Uh, well, teachers are going to be up to their ears in preparations, and they'll be hard pressed to start then.

Faith: Okay, let's get things rolling around two forty-five.

Randall: Okay, here, let me jot that down. Uh, could you grab a pen off my desk?

Faith: Right. Finding anything on your desk is like finding a needle in a hay stack. [Oh, it's not that bad.] Here, use mine.

Randall: Okay. And we'll need a hundred and fifty copies of this program guide by then.

Faith: Hey. That's a tall order on such short notice! How about lending me a hand to put things together [Okay.] by this afternoon so we don't have to worry about them?

Randall: Okay. And I think the manager has given the green light to go ahead and use the more expensive paper and binding for the guides this time.

Faith: Okay. So the interviews will go from two forty-five until, let's say, four thirty. [Okay.] I hope we can wrap things up by five.

Randall: Great. I think the bottom line is to keep things running smoothly throughout the day.

Faith: I agree. I'll pass this schedule by the director for a final look.

Key Vocabulary [Top]

  • go over (verb): review
    - We still need to go over the final proposal before Friday.

  • tentative (adjective): not certain, not finalized, still in review
    - Here are our tentative travel plans for next week's trip.

  • commence (verb): begin, start
    - The meeting was supposed to commence at 9:00 AM, but it was postponed until tomorrow.

  • originally (adverb): in the beginning, in the first place
    - We were scheduled originally to go over the proposal today, but let's review it later.

  • extracurricular (adjective): outside the regular curriculum
    - Several extracurricular activities are being organized for the students this semester.

  • placement (adjective, also noun): the act of placing something in a particular order or level
    - The results of the placement tests will determine which level you should be in.

  • shuttle (also noun): in this case, a bus that carries passengers from one point to another
    - The shuttle should arrive in 10 minutes.

  • to be up to your ears in (verb phrase): to be extremely busy
    - I'll try to complete that report by 5:00 PM, but I'm up to my ears in other paper work, so I can't guarantee it will be finished.

  • to be hard pressed (verb): to have difficulty doing something, especially because there is not enough time
    - I'm going to be hard pressed to complete the presentation this evening.

  • get things rolling (verb phrase): to start something
    - If you help, we can get things rolling and complete the assignment by tomorrow.

  • jot down (verb): to write down a quick note
    - Let me jot down your phone number so I don't forget it.

  • to find a needle in a hay stack (verb phrase): extremely difficult or impossible to find something
    - Locating the report in this filing cabinet like finding a needle in a hay stack.

  • tall order (noun): something difficult to do
    - Completing this work order by noon is a real tall order.

  • to lend a hand (verb phrase): to help
    - Could you l end me a hand to move these boxes?

  • to give the green light (verb phrase): to give the okay or permission to
    - The president of the company must give the green light before we proceed with the plan.

  • to wrap things up (verb phrase): to complete or finish
    - Since everyone lent a hand to the project, we were able to wrap things up in time for the party.

  • bottom line (noun): the most important point
    - We want to emphasize that the bottom line in our business is great customer satisfaction.

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