Education First Homestay Program
Photo by Dante Fontana, © Style Media Group.
Describe your business. Did you find it, or did it find you?
After being laid off from Mercy San Juan Medical Center as their child passenger safety coordinator in 2009, I had time to ponder my passions in life. One of those was traveling and learning about other cultures. On a whim, I answered an ad on Craigslist and was hired by EF Educational Homestay Programs (EHP), where I am now the site director for the Folsom International program. Every summer, we have more than 100 teenage students from different countries come to the area for about three weeks to learn about the American way of life and improve their English. Our mission is to break down language, culture and geographical barriers. This summer, from July 2-28, we’ll have students from Spain, Austria and Russia and will be looking for host families. Buses take the students to classes and activities, and we can accommodate families from Placerville to Citrus Heights.
How are you involved with both the community and your customer?
Both our host families from the community and our international students are our customers, and we strive to make the best match possible (by meeting each family and understanding a bit about their lifestyle and personality). Our students and families attend many fun activities in the area, helping to boost the local economy.
What life accomplishments are you most proud of?
My commitment to family and friends, raising two amazing and successful children, and my ability to keep a positive attitude and problem solve when the going gets tough; also, getting my master’s in school counseling and traveling to more than 16 countries.
If you could be any other profession, what would it be?
A veterinarian – I love animals.
And finally, customer service is…?
Providing a good match for our students and host families, and helping them with any problems that might arise.
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