Wondering who is behind this site in an attempt to get others to immerse themselves fully into their target language(s)? Well, I am!
My passion: language learning ♥☻
From my early childhood I enjoyed hearing other languages, which was in my little Dutch village and pre-internet life, unfortunately, quite difficult to fin in real-life.
My work in language education
During my International Business & Management Studies (IBMS) I’ve taken various English, Spanish and German courses. As part of my IBMS I did an Erasmus at the Universitat de Barcelona and returned afterwards for my internship at LanguageCourse.Net.
Advising Language Students and Teachers at Intertaal
During my studies I worked at Holland’s largest editor in language study material, Intertaal advising language students and language teachers on study books for their group, individual classes or self-study (using autodidactic material).
Availing Language Study Material to the world
Later I built LanguageStudyMaterial.com to offer a variety of language learning methods to language students an teachers worldwide reaching them in nine languages by localizing the pages and an SEO-strategy.
International Account Manager at Berlitz Language Schools
After my studies I worked at Berlitz Language Schools managing premium clients (with that they mean paying a fortune it’s not a quality assessment about the client or whatever) and mostly corporate accounts, such as NIKE, Royal Bank of Scotland, ENEL and IKEA. After a while I was a Language Center Assistent Director.
Realization at Berlitz resulted into disrupting the market
Working in that corporate life of commercially matching of supply and demand I realized that it didn’t match my ideal of language learning available for everyone. The expensive (€90-€100 hourly client’s investment) went mostly to corporate costs of Language Center, expensive office space, administrative staff (secretaries, management – yes, myself included and the trainings abroad, travel and accommodation). Although I benefited from that myself and I really value the working experience and amazing contacts within the team, I also came to understand that Berlitz teachers – even those working there for 20 years got paid only €12 hourly up to €18 for freelancers) without building a pension or social security, for short lessons that they had to prepare and give at the language center). So only 15-20% from the course price went to the most important component. Of course, it needs to be said that a pedagogic coordinator was an essential staff member to train and quality proof the teachers and the location was definitely a plus for most clients working in the business district nearby as is common in Berlitz offices worldwide. My observation though, was that many of the fixed costs were inevitable that the largest global corporate Language School just built up during their 140 years. And following the emergence of community marketplaces such as AirBnB and many equivalents in
Founding Interlinguals – connecting language learners to language teachers
With the above realizations, my business background and passion I felt an urge to disrupt that market while democratizing language education. Students could find the same teachers but for a way more affordable pay (say 25% of the Berlitz’ course price) matching student’s needs and teacher’s experience, location and lesson style
The freelance teacher, even Berlitz teachers joined, could almost double their hourly wage, after a 10% platform commission for getting them students, a payout safe from any individual learner online, guaranteed as per their cancellation policy, with reviews on both teacher and student side.
As a founding manager I guided the continuous development, multiple local marketing and global online marketing of the platform, managing a team of eventually 20 marketeers, engineers and designers.
Regina Coeli – the Nuns of Vught
After a few years I was asked by the prestigious language Institute the Nuns of Vught to guide development projects for their digital learning environment. With a history going back even centuries further ago to the original nuns than the old corporation Berlitz, this language institute similarly attracted premium clients. As part of innovation projects I rejuvenated the cooperation between language departments by connecting to the teachers in coached teams in their own language (6 out of all 7 at the time) by coaching them in developing new e-learning formats didactically and technically (external party) from need analysis to testing and evaluation.
Language teacher and tutor
Obviously, I also had to teach languages myself. I taught Dutch to expats, immigrants and international students and English to Dutch scholars. As a tutor I helped out students with their language subjects at school.
Copywriting, SEO, blogging, localization
After, I have worked on writing blogs considering SEO, and localization of other websites.
Language Learning apps
Using many language learning apps, I’m comparing them and building my own.
For external clients I’m conducting translation and localization projects using an excellent machine translation tool. With a specialization in Germanic and Romance languages, I take on projects for translations from, to and between the largest ten languages of both groups, as well as for Slavic languages. For commercial projects I have the final formatted texts, documents, instruction manuals or course guides checked by native proofreaders.