Program Models and Resources for Serving English Language Learners

Watch: Archived Webinar

Download: Webinar Slides

This webinar explores major shifts for the field of ESOL and adult education named in the WIOA legislation: 1) the need to prepare English Language Learners for unsubsidized employment in in-demand industries and occupations that lead to economic self-sufficiency; 2) focus on integrating instruction and other services with the local workforce development system. This webinar is a practitioner-led dialogue designed for you to consider what these shifts mean for program design and classroom practice. Learn about successful program models and practices from LaGuardia Community College’s Center for Immigrant Education and Training and World Education.

The Center for Immigrant Education and Training (CIET) highlights how it has responded to its English language learners’ needs by creating curricula resources and ESOL courses that are contextualized to workforce development. This includes CIET’s “NY-BEST” integrated courses that are team-taught with industry trainer and the services of the New York City Welcome Back Center for immigrant healthcare professionals. Presenters share ESOL techniques to adapt standard workforce materials for lower-level ELL students, along with available online ESOL resources contextualized to the healthcare, hospitality, and accounting sectors.

The webinar also provides an overview of a free resource, the Life Skills, College, and Career Readiness Guide for ESOL Learners. This guide was developed to provide teachers with dozens of suggested classroom learning activities, at all ESOL levels, that replicate the kinds of complex tasks that students will encounter at workplaces or in college classrooms. The extensive research that informed the development of the suggested activities also informed the development of the College and Career Readiness Standards.

Additional Resources:

Webinar Date: January 30, 2015


John Hunt is the Acting Executive Director for Adult Community Learning in the Division of Adult and Continuing Education at LaGuardia Community College (CUNY) in Queens, New York, the most diverse county in the US, where he oversees a variety of adult education programs in ESOL, high school equivalency, integrated workforce development, remedial education, and skilled immigrant career pathways, including the NYC Welcome Back Center for immigrant healthcare professionals. Through LaGuardia’s Center for Immigrant Education and Training (CIET), he has developed courses contextualized around civic and parent engagement, immigrant family literacy, DACA immigrant youth, and workforce development. He previously taught in Japan, Spain (International House) and New York and holds the Cambridge DELTA teaching diploma, along with degrees from Vassar College, NYU, and Baruch’s School of Public Affairs. He has presented on such topics as integrated ESOL and career pathways models (“NY-BEST”), immigrant parent engagement and college awareness, and skilled immigrant career advisement via the Welcome Back Initiative model. He is a Blue Ribbon Panel member of the Community College Consortium for Immigrant Education (CCCIE) and a Steering Committee member of the NYC Coalition for Adult Literacy (NYCCAL).

Hillary Gardner is the Director of the Center for Immigrant Education and Training (CIET) at LaGuardia Community College, where she oversees the New York City Welcome Back Center, which provides comprehensive services to help internationally trained healthcare professionals rebuild their healthcare careers in New York State. She has been teaching contextualized ESOL adult literacy courses for The City University of New York since 2002 and was an honoree for the New York Times ESOL Teacher of the Year award in 2008. She is the author of curricula, articles, and mini-grants specializing in civics, health and writing instruction for ESOL learners, including the recent mini-lesson, “Slogans for Success,” featured in the TESOL publication, Cat Got Your Tongue? Teaching Idioms to English Learners (2014).

Carey Reid has been involved in education for over forty years. Carey is co-author of The Life Skills, College, and Career Readiness Guide for ESOL Learners. He has taught English as a Second Language in the U.S. and abroad; adult basic skills in the areas of reading, math, and writing; college courses in ESL, expository writing, creative writing, and film studies; and literature for Upward Bound college-prep programs for promising high school students.  For nearly twenty years, Carey provided staff development for ABE teachers in Massachusetts as a member of the System for Adult Basic Education Support (SABES).

With more than 30 years of experience in adult education, Silja Kallenbach has worked as an administrator, professional development provider, and program developer, researcher, and teacher. Silja has worked for World Education since 1994 and currently oversees World Education’s portfolio of work and leads program development in the U.S as the Vice President of the U.S. Division. Some of the projects that Silja has helped to design, secured funding for, and worked on include: Networks for Integrating New Americans, the National College Transition Network, the New England Learner Persistence Project, and the Adult Multiple Intelligences Study. From 1994 to 2011, Silja served as the director of the New England Literacy Resource Center at World Education.