Viviana Ines Salazar Pantoja From Mexico: “I promise to return to Montreal…”

Viviana Ines Salazar Pantoja is a lovely student from Cancun, Mexico, who studied in our English as a Second language programme from February 14 to May 15, 2020.  She did part of her studies in EC Montreal’s Semi-Intensive, 24 Lessons per week programme, at our onsite school and the remainder of her weeks online with EC Virtual.  Throughout her studies at EC Montreal, Viviana remained motivated, determined and engaged.  When we were mandated to close by the government of Quebec on March 13, she returned home to Cancun and has been continuing her English studies online from the comfort of home.  She has made a lot of progress and we are so very proud of all her achievements. Viviana recently attended our virtual graduation ceremony and we learned how much she appreciated her lessons, our EC Montreal’s teachers and her time at the school.  Viviana wants to continue studying with EC Montreal when the time is right.  In the meantime, she sent us some wonderful comments describing her experience at EC Montreal.  We hope to welcome Viviana back to EC Montreal soon; whether it is at our full immersion school or on EC Virtual. We have reminded Viviana that she has access to Microsoft Suite for a full year and she can continue to access all the language exercises available on EC online for up to three months. Here is what Viviana wanted to share with all of us: I loved… Montreal!!!, it is an amazing multicultural and beautiful city, and the people are really friendly. I enjoyed… meeting people of other countries, to walk in the Old Port and to play in the snow. I learned… that you just need to try…speak, just speak, the Canadian people are really friendly and they can understand that you are doing a … Read more

Begin Your Journey to Your Canadian Post Secondary Studies at EC!

Yesterday, EC offered a free webinar from the Toronto School of Management. Arkadily Zhidelev from the school gave information about the different programmes available and the language requirements necessary to attend. The Toronto School of Management is an innovative college offering career-ready programmes from business, accounting, hospitality, tourism to IT and computing. The focus is on practical hands-on learning to give students the skills that will prepare them to give students skills that will prepare them for the business world. The programmes include work experiences.  This is ideal in giving students real life work experience to put on their resumes.  This is such an important boost in attaining employment in your field after completing your studies. EC has recently launched a virtual programme that is specifically catered to students who wish to pursue their post-secondary studies in Canada. EC’s virtual online university preparation course is for students who dream of studying at university in Canada but do not have the English level they need. Students begin learning online at home with our EC Virtual programme and get additional support in the form of webinars on various topics including: how to get the most from EC Virtual, an explanation of the Canadian University Pathway Prorgramme, meetings with our partner universities and colleges, living and moving to Canada and much more. They will also have monthly individual counselling sessions to help them choose a partner programme as well as assist with their university applications. This programme is available for only CAD $99 per week*! Based on a minimum of 10 weeks EC will be offering these free webinar sessions on a regular basis from our different pathway partners from across Canada.  If you want to reach the necessary language requirements to attend the college or university of your choice in Canada, make … Read more

Recipe of the Week!

Like most other people during this pandemic, I have been doing a lot more cooking.  I have been enjoying my time in the kitchen and am delighted to share this collection of my favourite meals to prepare.  I have found these cooking sessions to be very relaxing and enjoyable.  We have been eating our meals at the dinner table together as a family.  We have been blessed with this luxury of time and we are making the most of it.  I am happy to share these recipes with the EC community weekly so that you can give them a try and enjoy the meals with your loved ones, whether it is in person or virtually. As always, I will be sharing the recipe on Microsoft Teams where you can access your English or French online classes with EC Virtual. This week’s recipe is Creamy Mushroom Pasta.  It is easy to make and you can use the pasta noodle and types of mushrooms you prefer. For this recipe you will need: 2 Tablespoons of butter 2 Tablespoons of olive oil 1 can of cream of mushroom soup 1/2 cup of cooking cream 1/2 cup of white wine or vermouth 3 cups of mushrooms, mixed variety 1 bunch of green onion 2 garlic cloves 1 package of pasta noodles of your choice.  I like pennine. Chile flakes Salt and pepper to taste A very generous helping of Parmesan cheese Bring a large pot of salted waiter to boil.  In the meantime, in a large skillet, melt your butter and olive oil.  When warm enough, add your garlic and green onion.  Cook until they have softened lightly.  Add your white wine or vermouth.  Cook out the alcohol.  Add the mushrooms and cook until lightly browned.  Add the cream of mushroom soup and cooking … Read more

Use Your 1% Training Budget at EC!

In the province of Quebec, if you have a payroll that exceeds one million dollars per year, you are required to spend 1% of your budget on training your teams.  You must make career professional development part of your business’ priority.  If you have an engaged, skilled and well-equipped team, they will be a lot more productive and will excel at their jobs. Language is the foundation of everything we do.  In Quebec, especially in Montreal, it is important for all employees to be bilingual.  We must be proficient in both English and French.  Now that we are social distancing, we have the time to give our teams the skills they need to achieve their language needs. EC Montreal offers French, English and Bilingual online classes.  We offer group, private and corporate lessons called EC Virtual.  We use the Microsoft Teams platform.  In regards to corporate lessons, we offer corporate classes for different class sizes.  We can also design the lessons to better suit your type of business.  We work on the four language skills; speaking, listening, reading and writing and would be happy to focus on one or two particular skills. EC Montreal’s online lessons are very easy to follow and can be accessed from any type of devise; laptops, tablets and even smart phones. Now is the time to invest in your employees so when our operations resume, they will be equipped with the skills they need to produce with great confidence and ease. We are living in a global community and the need to speak English and French fluently is becoming more and more important. If you are a business owner or an employee who would like more information regarding EC Virtual, we encourage you to contact us at our general email address:  montreal@ecenglish.com.  We would be … Read more

Now a Word From Our Teachers…

During this difficult time, our teachers have truly been our heroes!  They have stepped up and delivered the most engaging and thoughtful lesson plans for our students.  They are keeping our EC Montreal students connected and progressing.  We have decided that we want to hear from our teachers about how they are feeling with the English and French online classes and how they foresee the English as a foreign language industry going forward.  We will be introducing you to a different teacher’s perspective every week. This week, we want to introduce you to one of our English teachers; Mariella Gaffrey.  This is what she had to say about her experience and how she is contributing to the well-being of our EC Montreal students. How long have you been teaching at EC Montreal? I have been teaching for more than three years at EC Montreal. Since May 13th, 2017. What do you enjoy most about teaching in the EFL industry? I enjoy being able to use my skills to help students succeed in an ever demanding global community. I use my communication skills to help them improve speaking with their peers and also to teach them that the goal is not about speaking perfectly, it is about getting the message across and understanding each other. I also feel that because of my background (my father is German and my mother is Japanese) I grew up in a special environment that helped me develop understanding and empathy for the students’ learning process. I enjoy meeting and helping people from different countries grow. It is truly an awesome experience to see the student’s use the language and feel empowered by learning. I also relish being part of the learning experience. Every lesson, I learn more about how to help the students’ in their … Read more

Staying Fit and Healthy at Home!

Most of us are not as active as we were before this pandemic.  We are staying home and not being as careful as we used to be in terms of what we are eating and the lack of activities we are performing.  It is easy to get lazy and become a slob.  Some of us are feeling sorry for ourselves and need those extra indulgences to make ourselves feel better.  It is fine to treat yourself to help with your mental health and well-being, however, it is not okay to let yourself go as it will have long-lasting effects on your overall health. We are happy to share some tips with you on how you can stay healthy and fit while you are at home. The first tip is to plan your meals in advance.  By doing this, you will only shop for the ingredients that you need to prepare your meals.  Plan healthy meals that are high in protein, low in carbs and include at least three different colours on your plate.  This will ensure you are eating a lot of healthy vegetables.  Make sure you eat throughout the day, however, make sure you don’t snack at night.  These are calories that we often consume because we are bored. Make sure you drink a lot of water throughout the day.  Fill up a large glass of water and sip from it while you are busy doing your English or French online lessons or sitting around watching television.  The water will help keep you full and will also cleanse your body of toxins.  You should be drinking no less than eight glasses of water a day.  You should also start off your day with a large glass of water to set the right tone for the day.  If you feel … Read more

Earn University Credits This Spring and Summer With EC!

Earn university credits this spring and summer with EC Montreal’s French virtual programme.  Take advantage of your time at home and get a head start to your next university semester.  EC Montreal will submit our course syllabus to your university.  Our program has been approved by several very prestigious Canadian and American universities including the University of Mississippi, the University of North Carolina and Queens University.  You only need to be registered for a four week period of our French EC virtual lessons to qualify for university credit.  Whether you are studying modern languages in university or you need to gain credits from your elective classes, this could be a great opportunity for you to complete your university credit requirements. As we are home social distancing, staying connected and keeping busy is key to our overall well-being.  So in addition to being practical and acquiring credits, you will also be benefiting from the companionship of your new EC friends.  Feeling like you are part of a community is also very comforting in coping with this current world situation.  Through EC virtual, you can travel and learn a language from the comfort of your own home. We encourage you to speak to your university before booking your EC French virtual course so we can be proactive in sending in the syllabus for approval.  Once it is approved, you can register to our program.  The price is an incredible $99 per week.  We will send you a placement test that you must complete within a 30 minute time period.  Once you return the completed test to us, we will schedule a speaking test with you so we can properly assess your language ability and place you in the appropriate French level.  EC Montreal offers French levels from beginner to advanced.  We work … Read more

Long Victoria Day Weekend!

We will have a long weekend in Canada as we are celebrating Victoria Day on Monday, May 18.  Spring has finally sprung in Montreal and we can look forward to sunny and warm weather.  We are happy to offer some ideas of what you can do to enjoy this long weekend while still social distancing and staying safe. Montreal is known for its bicycles paths and our Bixi bike system.  This is the perfect weekend to rent a bike and go for a long bike ride along the bicycle paths that cover the island of Montreal!  If you want to feel more safe, wear a protective mask and don’t get too close to the other cyclists.  The fresh air, vitamin D and exercise will make you feel healthy and strong.  Some recent studies suggest that vitamin D deficiency has been linked to more severe cases of covid-19, so the more vitamin D you have the more protected you are from the virus. If you are lucky enough to have a patio or backyard to enjoy, use it this weekend to soak in those rays of sunshine.  Have your meals “al fresco” and enjoy the warm weather.  Cook yourself something delicious and enjoy the preparation as well as the dining! Many of Montreal’s best restaurants are offering delivery so why not indulge in your favourite meal this weekend.  Order from Uber Eats or Skip the Dishes and treat yourself to something yummy!  It will really improve your mood and you are helping all of our local businesses who are struggling during this time.  If you haven’t already gotten a taste of Montreal, now is the time to try poutine, smoked meat or hot chicken sandwiches. You can also organize a virtual games night or happy hour event.  If you like trivia, … Read more

Throwback Thursday: Celebrating Montreal’s Birthday!

Every May, EC Montreal celebrates Montreal’s Birthday with our staff and students.  We have a huge birthday party in the student lounge to show how much we love Montreal.  When Montreal celebrated its 375th Birthday in 2017, the city of Montreal had celebrations all over the city.  They even lit up the Jacques Cartier bridge and had concerts and festivities throughout the year!  We mirrored these celebrations at EC Montreal.  On Montreal’s actual Birthday which is May 17, we decorated the student lounge with balloons and banners.  We had a huge Birthday cake with the 375 lit sparkler candles.  We even had a gigantic Birthday card that all the students and staff signed.  We then presented it to City Hall from the EC Montreal team!  It was very exciting and we have decided to make this our throwback Thursday picture this week!  These are such great memories and we are confident that we will go back to these wonderful times celebrating with our students and creating lifelong memories for them. I was recently asked by an EC member of our sales team to give her some cool facts about Montreal so she can share them with potential clients.  There are so many to list!  We are so very proud of our city and think it is the most wonderful destination to learn English, French or both languages.  The city of Montreal has something to offer to everyone!  Whether you are into art, sports, music, festivals, culture or gastronomy, you will fall in love with Montreal! Here are the top ten things we are most proud of as Montrealers:  Montreal is home to the Cirque du Soleil.  It was founded right here in Montreal by a street performer named Guy Laliberte.  He has now sold the industry but the shows still … Read more

We Want You to Stay!

EC Montreal is offering a special promotion for students who wish to stay with us a little bit longer!  In addition to getting a 30% discount on tuition, students will get 1 free week of tuition for every 3 weeks booked.  You don’t have to be in Montreal to take advantage of your English or French online lessons.  You can continue to learn and make progress on EC Virtual! We are all self-isolating and maintaining social distancing so take advantage of the luxury of this time by studying from the comfort of your own home.  You have developed a healthy routine with EC Montreal’s classes so keep it going!  You are making so much progress and are so close to achieving your language objectives.  Now is the time to invest in yourselves so you can get into that university of your dreams or get that job you have always wanted.  Maybe your goal is to immigrate to Quebec and need to achieve a B2 level of French.  Now is the time to make that dream a reality.  We are all home and we need to use this time to cross those items off our bucket lists. One of the best bits of taking classes with EC Virtual is the community and companionship that comes along with it.  You are part of a family who is in the same boat as you are.  You have classmates, friends and teachers who are here to guide you, teach you and fill your day with a little bit of sunshine. If your departure date at EC Montreal is approaching, please take advantage of this extensions promotion and stay just a little bit longer!  This offer is only valid until June 1, 2020.  Book your extension weeks before this promotion runs out.  Remember that if … Read more