Language Partners

GEI provides students with the opportunity to have a language partner. Language partners are local volunteers that will meet with students once or more per week to practice conversational English. Students that are interested should fill out the Language Partner Student Application and email it to

Benefits of a language partner

Students will be able to:

  • build their confidence speaking English
  • make new acquaintances and friends
  • practice English in different scenarios/situations
  • meet with the language partner when convenient
  • get exposure to different accents
  • learn English in a more relaxed setting
  • improve listening skills

Testimonials from language partners

“The ELI Language Partner and Tutoring program is a great opportunity to help English Language Learners use the English language flexibly and fluidly. As a Language Partner, I had the chance to help inform students of the nuances of English, and, in turn, they taught me more than a few things about their culture and how to look at English differently. The best way to learn is to teach. The ELI is a great space to be both a learner and a teacher.”

“Being a language partner/tutor at ELI was incredibly gratifying. Being a student at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, I am clearly used to being a student and completing work assigned by a professor. However, in this experience I was forced to step out of my comfort zone in order to teach exchange students the intricacies of the English language. Although I was unfamiliar with this task, this experience allowed me to develop my hidden talents while teaching my valuable lessons and cultural awareness along the way.”

“Being a tutor at the English Institute has been a two-way learning experience for me. I have had the privilege of becoming a teacher and learning for the first time how to help young adults improve their English skills through reading, listening, speaking, and writing while simultaneously gaining insight into my students’ differing cultures and views of the world, of which I had never heard before. While students are able to learn and improve their language skills, I have been able to hear new perspectives regarding the comparison of American culture to Chinese culture as well as what it is like to learn English as a second language; I would have never been exposed to their valuable thoughts outside of this setting. This experience has helped me become more culturally aware and has encouraged me to intertwine the boundaries of the teacher-student relationship. Both my students and I have interchanging roles between teacher and student during our interactions with one another. Although a tutor was initially the role I was assigned, I was also privileged enough to be a student in the presence of others with differing cultural backgrounds and worldviews than my own.”