Staff Spotlight: Christie Koness

Student Affairs Representative


Christie has worked for International TEFL Academy since 2011 in the Student Affairs department and Alumni Association, and more recently in the Charity Department and Social Media Team. She taught English in Nepal in 2009 and recently returned from traveling through South America and Europe for 8 months with her husband.

What is your favorite travel memory?

This is such a difficult question for me to answer because I've had so many amazing experiences in various countries with many people around the globe. However, one of my favorite recent memories is hiking the Quilotoa Loop in Ecuador.

The hike usually takes around three days and you show up at a hostel each night. The directions for the Loop that my husband and I received were minimal at best (walk 500 feet and turn right at the big rock for example). Despite the directions, we arrived at the Quilotoa Volcano - one of the most amazing things I've ever seen!

How have you changed/grown since working for your current company?

I couldn't even list all of the ways I've grown in this small text box by working here. I started here at age 24 and now am almost 30 so you can imagine how much I've learned and changed!

I would say however, that I have become more independent, innovative, creative and efficient. International TEFL Academy provides an environment for all of its staff members to be involved in decisions, give ideas, and speak their mind.

The management team here is amazing which provides us with great support in which to grow professionally.

What is the best story you've heard from a return student?

I had a student 2 or 3 years ago that couldn't decide whether to take a great job with another travel company here in the USA or to go follow her dreams and teach in Taiwan.

We talked through why (in my opinion) she should follow her dreams of travel because that job in the USA will always be there someday. She ended up deciding to go to Taiwan for a year and loving it!

What makes your company unique? When were you especially proud of your team?

I couldn't even count the number of times people say to me "you work for the best company!" And it is because ITA is so unique.

I work for a company that TRULY cares about its employees, students, and its mission; teaching English abroad.

We are completely transparent and share all of our knowledge with our TEFL students. Also, as I mentioned above, everyone here is given a huge opportunity to be innovative, creative and a leader.

What do you believe to be the biggest factor in being a successful company?

To care and fully believe in your product and hire people who have the same vision.