Meet the EC SF Staff: Marin, our Academic Year (AY) Coordinator

Meet Marin, the new English Language Academic Year (AY) Coordinator here at EC SF, an English language center in San Francisco! For those who don’t know, the English Language Academic Year program is for students who study at EC for 24 weeks (approximately six months) or longer, which gives students the opportunity to really focus on learning English in a comprehensive manner. Academic Year is highly encouraged for students with an academic focus, whether planning to take the TOEFL or Cambridge tests, wanting to get ready to attend an American university, or need to be fluent in English for their job or career. Academic Year students receive extra support in their learning, including the opportunity to attend lectures, meet with a tutor, and receive a certificate at the end of their program. As well as taking on some teaching duties, Marin’s job is to make sure all of this runs smoothly! … Here are a few questions we asked Marin to help us get to know her and learn a little bit about what she likes about her job. Please tell us a little bit about yourself. I’ve been working in EFL (English as a Foreign Language) since 2004, first in Russia, then the USA. The Bay Area is my home, and I’m happy to be back! My favorite things to teach in an English course are conditionals, idioms, and pronunciation. How long have you been working at EC SF? Just over two months. I started in the middle of July 2014. What is the best thing about your position? I like being able to talk to the students one-on-one and see how much better their English gets during their stay here. What is your favorite or most memorable experience abroad? In 2007, I spent the summer travelling across Siberia. It was a great trip in general, but I … Read more

Meet the EC SF Staff: Elisa, our new Academic Director

Meet Elisa, our new Academic Director here at EC San Francisco, and the newest member of the EC SF team! She has previously worked at EC Miami, and brings both extensive experience in ESL education to her position and the benefit taking English courses in America can have for students. Elisa, please tell us a little bit about yourself. I have taught English for about 10 years, in Chile, New York City and Miami and became a certified CELTA teacher in 2005 in Playa del Carmen, Mexico. I have been an Academic Director for four years now and just moved to San Francisco from Miami, Florida! I love that ESL brings people from all over the world together under the same common goal and I love being a part of that process. As a native of Los Angeles and having moved around plenty since then, I am thrilled by the English teaching/learning opportunities that San Francisco has to offer. I enjoy the international flare that big cities offer and especially enjoy the experience of introducing the highlights of these cities with newcomers. My goal is for students to feel welcomed and guided and hope that as they participate in the fun and craziness that San Francisco offers, they pick up a little English too! How long have you been working at EC? I was the Academic Director at EC Miami for 2.5 years. What is the best thing about your position at EC?  I get to work all kinds of people (teachers and students alike!) who have pretty cool and interesting backgrounds. What is your favorite/most memorable experience abroad?  Trekking in Patagonia in South America– you’re at the bottom of the world, very far removed from everything and the landscape there is unreal. What is your favorite thing about San Francisco?  I don’t know … Read more

The San Francisco Insider – Drew’s Tips: Friday nights at the De Young

Ready for a break after your week of studying hard for your English courses? The San Francisco Insider is a regular contribution from EC San Francisco teacher Drew Rogers, who knows how to make the most of anybody’s stay in the San Francisco Bay Area! … We are lucky to have so many cultural freebies in this city, and  the first event I’ll bring up is a grand tradition called Friday nights at the De Young (museum). Depending on the month or even week, musical acts change depending on the cultural event. For instance, generally, near Cinco de Mayo, a Mexican band will perform; or if it’s a Spanish theme, well, guess who shows up on stage? It goes from 5:30–8:30pm  every Friday, all ages welcome; cash bar, cafe/restaurant, free live music, arts and crafts–and see the museum  for free as well! So how else do you explore your journey in this robust town? Well, the first thing to do is check out my favorite budget-friendly center where you only need fast fingers to win prizes (I have) while perusing the various events both in SF as well as in the Bay area. Yes, http://sf.funcheap.com was started by a  student  who moved here with little money to waste, and his friend got tired of lending him money; so he did what every smart  student might do: he went to every event that was free– or almost free– and now he’s parlayed that into his own website that lists daily activities for the week with live links/info (and he’s now a VIP everywhere making good $$)! On this site you’ll find everything from a world famous DJ playing late nights for only $5 (last weekend, Mark Farina) to only paying $8 for ice skate rentals with  2 hour skate at Yerba Buena ice rink behind the Metreon. Btw, that special is every Wednesday night starting at … Read more