Our team

Academic staff

The key to academic support lies not in the programme to be delivered but in the people who have been charged with the responsibility of delivering it. Regardless of how sound that programme may be, its success is entirely dependent upon the individuals who have been selected to carry it out. At Language Link, these ‘individuals’ are referred to as academic managers and carry such job titles as Head Academic Department, Methodologists, Senior Director of Studies, Director of Studies and assistant Director of Studies.

Given the importance of selecting the right people for these positions, the question may rightfully be asked, ‘What criteria does Language Link employ when choosing its academic managers.’ Contrary to popular belief, education, degrees, and diplomas carry less weight in this decision than do a readiness, willingness AND ability to assist teachers with their academic needs and issues. Obviously being ‘ready and willing’, though commendable, is of little value without that third ingredient ‘ability’, and conversely, ‘ability’ without a desire to help is of similar i.e. little value.

At Language Link, all our academic mangers have withstood the test of time. They have not just demonstrated but proven their desire and ability to render appropriate and meaningful academic assistance to the teaching staff for whom they have been charged with helping to meet the demands of a modern TEFL classroom.

Academics aside, all academic managers employed by Language Link Russia have lived in the country for a minimum of three years and have a firm grasp of the cultural issues that will confront our new teaching staff here in the largest country on earth. Without exception, all can be counted upon to help our new teachers to understand the Russian culture, to meet the challenges presented by living in a new and unfamiliar country and to adapt to its idiosyncrasies where such exists.

Maxime Froideval
Position:Director of Studies (French)
Educational History:l’université de Paris VII
Start date at Language Link:mai 2005
Personnellement, quand je suis arrivé à Moscou en mai 2005, je m’étais déjà « frotté » à l’enseignement de ma langue maternelle, et je savais plus ou moins ce qui m’attendait dans les salles de classes. Mais bon quand même, c’est toujours un peu difficile quand on arrive dans un nouveau pays.
Joyce Clark
Position:Head of External Examinations and Training
Educational History:Jordanhill College of Education; London University
Start date at Language Link:March 1999
My first experience of teaching was not a very happy one. After school I went to Jordanhill College of Education and trained for four years to become a primary school teacher. But I was not comfortable in the classroom and decided that teaching was not for me. I was afraid of the kids!
Emily Malyon-Roberts
Position:Director of Studies, Moscow
Educational History:BA CH Russian and Spanish; TEFL certificate
Start date at Language Link: September 2012
Hi, my name's Emily and I'm from the south of England.  I've always loved learning languages: I started learning French when I was 4 and went on to study many European languages when I was at school, including Spanish, Italian and German.
David Morris
Position:Director of Studies, Moscow
Educational History:BA English and Philosophy; TEFL certificate
Start date at Language Link:September 2012
International Examiner Status:Since February 2013
Hi! I'm David.  For the longest time, I have been interested in language; in how it is used and how it can vary, depending on the context and meaning of the user.
Vlada Lapshina
Position:Director of Studies, Moscow
Educational History:Master of Education
Start date at Language Link:January 2013
Hello, I'm Vlada.  I graduated from Perm University in Soviet times.  I started my teaching career almost 25 years ago and have been happy to work as a teacher all these years as I'm sure it's the best profession in the world!
Katie Pelton
Position:Assistant Director of Studies, Moscow
Educational History:BA French and German; TEFL Express certificate; TEFL certificate
Start date at Language Link:September 2013
Hi, I'm Katie! I grew up in a small town in Pennsylvania, but Baltimore is where I call home. I discovered that I loved languages through my first year French course in high school and I followed that love to university where I majored in French with a German minor.
Michael Schmitz
Position:Director of Studies, Zelenograd
Educational History:BA German and French; TEFL certificate
Start date at Language Link:September 2010
I come from Rhode Island, the smallest state in America. I had always had an interest in history and languages.
Larisa Strukova
Position:Senior Methodologist specialising in Young Learners, Moscow
Educational History:Teacher Training University: English and German
Start date at Language Link: June 2009
International Examiner Status:Since March 2012
My name is Larisa Strukova, and this is my fourth year with the company. I grew up in a small town in Western Siberia. Although the Taiga wasn't far, I saw bears and deer only in pictures.