Director de Ken’s Education Group
Soy Maestro, hijo de maestros, hermano de maestra y sobrino de profesores y profesoras. Desde siempre mi vida ha girado en torno a la educación. Pero mi destino estaba marcado por mi carácter inquieto e inconformista y tenía claro que la enseñanza reglada no era lo mío.
Cuando terminé mi segunda carrera decidí marcharme un año al extranjero, y allí descubrí mi verdadera vocación. Quería llevar a Teruel el modelo de negocio que tanto me había gustado y del que tanto había aprendido. A mi regreso, en el año 2001, monté mi primera academia de idiomas, y tengo que reconocer que vivía mejor que ahora, menos horas de trabajo, menos estrés y más tiempo libre. Pero aquello estaba lejos de mi sueño.
A los pocos años conocí a mi mujer, que por aquel entonces trabajada de periodista en la televisión local. Juntos emprendimos una nueva vida y asumimos nuevos retos. Ella dejó su trabajo para unirse a mi aventura y así comenzamos a crear Ken’s Education Group.
Durante años de bonanza y de crisis económica hemos sabido reinventarnos para darle a nuestros clientes lo que realmente nos pedían: aprender inglés. Poco a poco fuimos dejando las clases de la academia para centrarnos únicamente en los cursos de inmersión lingüística en el extranjero.
Durante estos años he sido padre de dos hermosas hijas y mi visión del mundo también ha cambiado.
Todos sueñan con hablar inglés por diversos motivos: para viajar, para conseguir un mejor puesto de trabajo, para no quedarse atrás, para conocer nuevos amigos… En una palabra, para mejorar. Y todo lo que sea una mejora conlleva esfuerzo.
Veinte años de experiencia en el sector me han hecho madurar y tener clara mi visión empresarial. Mi negocio no es uno más del sector, es diferente. Te animo a que visites nuestra web y nos conozcas.
Y un consejo… si quieres comerte el mundo, aprende inglés.
Teresa Maria Julian Parillo
Directora de Proyectos Internacionales
“¿Te llamas Teresa Julián y eres canadiense? ¿qué hace una canadiense en Teruel?” Estas son las típicas preguntas que he contestado desde que llegue a España hace ya 6 años. Y si, soy canadiense, de padre español (turolense) y madre italiana. Mi educación, por tanto, fue una mezcla de estas tres culturas: paella, salsa de tomate y Canadian beaver tail. En el año 2013 vine con un programa de asistente de idiomas para centros escolares y esta ciudad me enamoró.
Hablo cuatro idiomas, entreno a un equipo de fútbol femenino, estudié “Filosofía, Relaciones Internacionales y estudios Clásicos”, tengo una casa con jardín y dos gatos. Soy una persona independiente, disciplinada, con carácter y me apasiona mi trabajo. Ayudar a que otras personas lleven a Canadá en su corazón es un trabajo muy gratificante. Tener el corazón dividido entre ambos países, como el mío, es maravilloso.
Coordinador Local para España
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WHO WE ARE AND MISSION
Ken’s Education Group was founded in 2001 with the goal of universalizing the English language, working alongside the international community to offer the best overseas educational programs. As an agency specializing in programs abroad, we have developed numerous academic and cultural programs in the UK, Ireland, France, Germany, the US, South Africa, Italy, Canada, and more besides. Our participants include students, teachers, and adults who wish to improve their linguistic ability.
Our constant drive to expand our horizons led us to create a student exchange between Spain and Canada – an educational program based on learning, living, and experiencing. Complete immersion is the best way to learn a new language, and here we combine language-learning with the cultural aspect that comes with living in a foreign country.
MEET THE TEAM
Director of the Agency
David was born and raised in Teruel, Spain. He always had a strong instinct for business, and in 2001 he founded Ken’s Education Group to meet a need for English instruction in his hometown. He started as an English teacher himself, before expanding and hiring more teachers and opening an agency for language courses abroad. With an aim to break down barriers with the programs, David has mixed together the basic ingredients of learning and personal experiences – a recipe for success that is created in the best schools in the world.
«Everyone’s ideal is a world without barriers, where people can communicate respectfully and freely. By merging Spain’s and Canada’s cultures, we will be closer to achieving that dream»
Teresa Maria Julian Parillo
Director of Projects
Teresa grew up in Montreal, in a family of Italian and Spanish immigrants. She is fluent in English, Spanish, and French, with a basic knowledge of Italian. Her upbringing, therefore, was a mix of these three cultures: Spanish paella, Italian tomato sauce, and Canadian beaver tail. Living in Montreal gave her direct insight into what a multilingual society looks like and how it functions. She studied in the French bilingual programs at school and therefore has experience with the challenges that students face when learning a second language at the same time. At university, she studied Philosophy, International Relations (concentrating in Global Governance) and Classical Studies, graduating in 2013. She worked on a Master’s program in Sport for Development and Peace at a distance, though unfortunately for personal reasons was unable to complete the final project. She came to Spain in 2013 as part of a Language and Culture Assistants program, in part as a means of reconnecting with her Spanish family, and now Spain has become a second home.
As a student, she worked on United Nations projects, learned from some of the best in development and was able to intern with the Cameroon Football Development Program at a distance. As an athlete, she learned many values in leadership, discipline and openness that have followed her in life. She has worked as camp monitors, international monitors and more in the past. She’s worked on language abroad programs for the past few years, and has built the Canadian exchange program in its entirety.
¨I wanted to bring together my two countries, Spain and Canada. I wanted people from Teruel to learn about Canada and the rest of the world and see just how wonderful it can be. Every day we look at the news and see horrible things, and rarely do we speak about the good. I want them to know that the world is not simply a hateful place, but in fact can be welcoming and full of life. I also believed Canadians and Spaniards deserved early opportunities to become culturally diverse and develop a third language. In an ever globalized world, it is vital to speak multiple languages. This program lets anyone who believes in it get the same opportunity so long as they fulfill our requirements for selection.¨
Jordan Tryck Dieni
Jordan grew up in Alaska and attended college in the state of Washington, graduating in 2012 after majoring in English Linguistics and Spanish. She arrived in Spain at the same time as Teresa – in 2013 – participating in the same program. Her placement was by chance, but she and Teresa soon became friends and later colleagues. Now she forms part of the team coordinating the program. As an American (though often teased that she is almost Canadian), Jordan has insight into the striking cultural differences that students may face when participating in these kinds of programs and that insight has aided in the creation of the program.
«I know the isolation that comes with living in some parts of North America. Spain is a welcoming country and a great first step into the world at large»
Local Coordinator for Red Deer, Edmonton and Calgary. Canada
Abby grew up in Red Deer, Alberta, Canada and developed an interest in studying different cultures after travelling in high school. On the path to her degree in Behavioural Science and International Development, she had opportunities to live and study in Central America, facilitate short-term international trips, and work with local immigrants from over 75 countries. After spending one year in Teruel as an Auxiliar de Conversación, she is so excited to be able to join the team, sharing Spain with her fellow Canadians and vice versa. She loves spending time with her nephews, eats 10x more peanut butter than any Spaniard she knows, and misses bustling Saturday afternoons in the Plaza del Torico in Teruel.
“After falling in love with Spain – from the generous hospitality, to vibrant history-rich festivals, to the relational tapa culture – I can’t imagine a more perfect position than to show youth how cross-cultural contexts can be incredible “classrooms» for self-learning, appreciating diversity, and developing new friendships. With two places I love, I can’t wait to share my Spanish experience with young Canadians and my Canadian home with Spanish youth!»
Local Coordinator for Eastern Ontario, Canada
Melissa Moloney is from and currently lives in Ottawa, Ontario — the capital city of Canada. After high school, she attended a small college in western Canada to study Intercultural Studies. During those years, Melissa traveled to Guatemala 4 times to learn Spanish, to study the culture, and to work with many aid organizations. In 2015, Melissa moved to Teruel as an Auxiliar de Conversacion. Now that she has returned to Ottawa, Melissa will help coordinate the Cultural Exchange program in central Ontario.
“I love Spain! Because I have lived and worked in Teruel, my desire is now to see young people experience Spain through this unique Cultural Exchange opportunity”
Local Coordinator for Spain
Ivan was born and raised in Zaragoza, the largest city and capital of Aragon. There he attended university, studying English Linguistics and Literature, before getting a Masters in English and Italian Translation. He spent a year in the UK as part of the Erasmus program before returning to Spain. He has travelled widely throughout the UK and Europe. In 2014 he moved to Teruel, working at Ken’s as an English teacher and a logistics coordinator for student trips abroad.
“Spain and Canada are different in many ways, but they share two important aspects: they both have cultures that welcome foreigners and they are both centers of two of the most spoken languages in the world. This makes them ideal choices for a culture and language exchange”
I was born in Buenos Aires, Argentina, but my heart is divided between where I was born and where I grew up. When I was ten, my family moved to Teruel, a beautiful Spanish city and my father’s birthplace. I studied Journalism at the University of Navarra and continued my studies in Madrid and Buenos Aires before returning to Teruel. I worked in various media positions before joining the wonderful team of Ken’s Education Group, where I run the Communications Department.
“To live a language is to love its origins. This exchange between Spain and Canada gives students the opportunity to learn a new language while also experiencing its customs, its people and its home. In such a setting, learning is guaranteed”
Originally from a small village in Teruel, I went to university in Zaragoza where I graduated with a degree in English Philology in 1997. The following year I began my Postgraduate Certificate in Education while working with a school for deaf children.
During the 1998-99 academic year, I worked at a school in Nebraska, USA, as a Spanish teacher. Upon returning to Spain I settled in Zaragoza, although my work as a teacher, English camp monitor, and coordinator of English language trips abroad meant traveling to both Ireland and the US.
In 2012 I returned to my village and took up a position in the Administration and Quality Department of Ken’s Education Group. Much more than a job, Ken’s is a team dedicated to providing the best and highest quality services and programs possible, and to do our bit in the education and betterment of every person we work with. As Teresa of Calcutta said, “It’s not how much we do, but how much love we put in the doing. It’s not how much we give, but how much love we put in the giving.”
“An exchange program offers immense benefits. At the academic level, students improve their language abilities and experience different educational systems; on a personal level, the benefits are even greater. Experiencing different cultures expands your worldview, increasing your capacity for tolerance and respect and broadening your own personal horizons. It also improves self-confidence and builds independence while making you feel like a part of something bigger»