I grew up in a rural town in southeastern Utah, population ~5,000, and my entire life I dreamed of the day when I could leave it. I wanted to circumnavigate the world. I wanted to immerse myself in interesting cultures. I wanted to eat foods that made smoke come out of my ears. I wanted photos of myself jumping off of castle walls. When I graduated high school I unequivocally knew that I was going to live in another country. I was going to speak 5 languages fluently as an Ambassador for the US Foreign Service. Like many dreams, my reality came a little shy of my ambitions, but at 28, I’ve managed to travel all the way around the world; pick up the beautiful languages of Korean and Spanish; and know for a fact that I do not care for chicken feet. The rest, well, I’m not so sure it’s important anymore. My experiences traveling changed me and my desires for the future.
"This set me off on the path that has ultimately led to my greatest passion and pleasure: the study of languages"
My first experience teaching English was in Santa Cruz de la Sierra, Bolivia. I traveled to Santa Cruz to do some basic work for a non-profit working to assist Bolivians in a myriad of ways. One of the biggest barriers I encountered is a familiar one to anyone who has traveled much: the Bolivians’ English wasn’t phenomenal and my Spanish was simply atrocious. Instead of working around the language issue, I decided to tackle it head on and asked my coworkers if they wanted me to teach English to some of them. This set me off on the path that has ultimately led to my greatest passion and pleasure: the study of languages.
I returned home from Bolivia to finish my degrees. After I graduated, penniless and with strict orders by my parents to make something of myself, I replied to a job posting on Craigslist. The internet classified had me believing I would, “Live Abroad, Become Rich!” Bright eyed and bushy tailed I thought to myself “I can do this!” and booked myself a plane ticket. Two weeks later I found myself on an airplane headed to Samgye South Korea. My bags were stuffed with useless items like fancy cocktail dresses and cookbooks I had never used. I had a passport and a visa, never mind that I’d forgotten to get a debit card or take cash of any kind. I’d left my family and friends behind me in their rural city, and I was off on the greatest adventure of my life!
I felt both excited and terrified. Halfway through the plane ride I realized in the whirlwind of pursuing leaving I hadn’t even taken the time to look at a map of the world to see where South Korea was. I didn’t know the language, I didn’t know a single person, and I didn’t care. I was leaving the US on a grand adventure and I was going to succeed.
My time in South Korea was incredible. I made great friends, learned to speak Korean (poorly), and fulfilled my childhood dream of circumnavigating the world. More importantly, I fell in love with teaching. I realized that I wanted to teach English and that I was really good at it. Regretfully, my father fell ill a few months before my contract with the Korean Government ended. My grand plans to move to Germany for the summer and teach in a castle crumbled beneath my feet.
"More importantly I fell in love with teaching"
I ended up moving to Denver to live below my parents and assist in my father’s cancer treatment. I realized I couldn’t make the kind of money that I was accustomed to in Korea (mostly because no one was paying for my rent anymore, the audacity!) and so I accepted a job doing basic customer service for an online kids video game. I worked at this job for about 2 years, but in 2013 my father finally succumbed to his cancer and my world was completely turned inside out. I spent a year in a deep depression. My fiance and I moved from the mountain west to San Francisco, where I found myself hiding in my apartment with all of the lights turned off and the curtains closed. I was unemployed, unhappy, and finally realized that I needed to stop fighting myself, and go back to teaching.
I took a CELTA certification course in downtown San Francisco and I felt the light start to creep back into my life. The curtains were opened, the windows were cracked, and fresh air poured into my life. I graduated CELTA and started working at a SF based language school. There, I found myself once again. I found my voice as I began teaching in earnest. Every student I taught was a special friend who I could help, and who could help me. There was laughter, there were tears. Everyday was full of new friendships made, and new ideas formed. Teaching English became so much more than just going to work everyday, I formed lasting bonds that transformed my students from strangers to people I care about, deeply. Every student of mine is someone whose life I can make a little bit better, and who can make my own life a richer, more meaningful experience.
In 2016 I decided it was time for me to take the next step in my career and I approached my business partner, Sophie, about joining forces to create the ultimate English Teaching Duo. We started plotting and planning the best way to launch our budding business: My English Coaches LLC. We spent many an hour crouched over coffee, arguing about semantics and stylistic choices. That year we celebrated the birth of her first son, my engagement, and the opening of our joint venture. We became a kickass team with a mission, a goal, and a passion for inviting students and others to join us.
"Teaching English isn’t just a job, to me it’s a way of life. A way to help those around us to achieve their potential."
Through teaching English I have been able to travel the world. After learning about the deepest, darkest corners of my soul, teaching pulled me back from the brink. My mission is to reach out to those in our community and help remove the barriers I experienced in Bolivia; I want to help form inclusive communities whose inclusivity doesn’t stop where their language does. Teaching English isn’t just a job, to me it’s a way of life. A way to help those around us to achieve their potential. No matter how big or how small those dreams may be- we want to help. We believe that English is fluid, and through constant life learning we can reach out to our communities, and ultimately make everyone’s life better.
We invite you to join us in this mission.
Co-Founder & Coach
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