His classroom is the street, and his student is a migrant who arrived on a boat.

César de Miguel is an industrial engineer and now-retired university professor. For years he taught Computer Science at the University of Deusto, in Spain. Now, for the last two years he’s been teaching again—but this time, in a very different context. His classroom is the street, and his student is a migrant who arrived in Spain on a boat. The story of this unusual teacher-student relationship was picked up by Spanish news sources, including Antena 3.

The student

The beneficiary of these classes is named Evans Isibor, and he lives on the streets of Bilbao, in northern Spain. He’s a 30-year-old Nigerian who arrived in Spain on a boat, like thousands of others, seeking to reach the coast and carve out a better future for himself. He had to leave his family in Nigeria and wants to learn a trade so he can work to send money to his family.

A beggar with study notes
Evans begs sitting on the ground on cardboard boxes next to a bank branch in the city center of Bilbao. It was there that he met his teacher, César de Miguel.

One day the retired professor took notice of Isibor, after passing by many times. He wasn’t just any beggar; while he was begging he had notes in his hand and was studying. This was what caught Miguel’s attention. He stopped and became interested in the Nigerian’s story. Isibor is trying to graduate from high school and study a vocational training program to fulfill his dream: to work in construction. He wants to get a good job with which he can leave the street and support his family.

Keep reading the new