Language, often described as the bridge between cultures and people, is an essential tool in our global society. Today, we introduce you to an inspiring voice in the English language teaching realm, Alexis Heintz, whose fascinating journey through the world of linguistics exemplifies this bridge’s power and importance.
The Beginning: A Software Test Engineer’s Realization
Born in Germany and now an American, Alexis’s journey into English language coaching wasn’t a straightforward one. Beginning her career with an Indian software company, her exposure to the diverse nature of English in India sowed the seeds for her future as a language coach. Witnessing communication breakdowns between her Indian colleagues and their North Carolinian clients, she realized her calling lay not in software but in bridging these linguistic gaps. She traded software coding for language coding, shifting her life’s trajectory to Brazil, where her English teaching journey truly began.
“If you say one thing this way, and how a person might understand it, I found myself enjoying that much more than my actual job. And so eventually, I decided to take the leap of faith.”
The Evolution: From a Teacher to a Guide
Having taught for over a decade, Alexis has moved from a traditional teaching role to one she describes as guiding “intelligent professionals through this world of English.” With a unique approach that focuses on opportunities for improvement rather than errors, Alexis emphasizes the importance of understanding an adult’s learning style. By positioning herself as a constant learner, she resonates with her students, reminding them that even native speakers make mistakes.
The Digital Shift: Teaching in The Modern Era
The digital age has transformed many professions, and teaching is no exception. Alexis’s teaching went online in 2015, a shift that became more pronounced during the pandemic in 2020. With a student base that ranged from Belarusian IT professionals to those aiming to break into multinational corporations, Alexis’s online classroom became a space of cultural exchange, empathy, and growth. This online pivot also led her to Workplace Languages, where she continues to help people navigate the world of English, as well as teaching German and Spanish and contributing to cross-cultural communication sessions.
“I really like to hear my students’ stories and to understand what’s motivating them to learn and improve their English. I like how Workplace Languages has that same goal of giving people what they need in order to get ahead.”
Technology & The Future: Embracing Change
In our rapidly evolving world, technology plays an indispensable role. Alexis sees the advent of technologies, especially AI, not as a threat but as tools opening doors to new possibilities. With a keen interest in further understanding AI, particularly Chat GPT, Alexis believes in the harmonious coexistence of machine and man in the realm of education. With her global student base, she witnesses first-hand the wonders technology can achieve, connecting her to learners from Argentina to Poland, all from her current residence in Sicily.
“I think it’ll be an exciting thing to see how our technology provides us with more opportunities to connect in ways that didn’t before.”
Alexis Heintz’s journey from a software test engineer to a renowned English language coach underlines the unpredictable paths life often takes. With a deep-rooted passion for languages, culture, and human connections, she is a testament to the fact that when you follow your passion, you change not only your life but also the lives of countless others.
As the world grows smaller through technological advancements, educators like Alexis ensure that language remains the bridge that brings us all closer together.