Liz was born in Corvallis, Oregon, USA, and has done more than most in the ESL industry. After graduating from university with a masters in psychology, she worked in information management until her husband was offered a job teaching military personnel in the United Arab Emirates. After living in the Middle East for almost 2 years, her family moved around various places in Asia including Singapore, Thailand and India. During this time she worked for language schools, universities and businesses. After spending years teaching english all over the world, she is back in the U.S.A and currently works for a major ESL training provider. We are incredbily grateful to have her on hand to offer advice and support in all aspects of ESL education.
When did you decide you wanted to become an ESL teacher?
At college I thought a lot about becoming an elementary school teacher but I never followed it up. In 2002 my husband and I moved to the Middle East and I got involved in some part time teaching during my time there. I loved it and decided I wanted to do it as a permanent job.
What sort of roles have you had in the ESL industry?
Since I started off I’ve done a whole range of things. I’ve taught at kindergarten and middle schools in South East Asia, given crash courses to call centre workers in India and I’m currently involved in the training side of the industry.
How has the ESL industry changed since you first started teaching?
It’s hard to generalise because the industry is so big and diverse. For one thing the demand has skyrocketted in the past 10 years. People in certain parts of the world now have more money to spend on their children’s education. Nowadays, I think in many places schools are more professional- which is great. Also in the training sector there are far more options and better programs availible for people who want to teaching english abroad.