Finer English Title

Finer English Team

Group PictureHere are some, but not all, of the Finer English team, at a Teachers' Meeting in Kassel in January 2019.

Finer English stands for quality.

That's why every teacher in our international team of native-speakers provides first class, professional language training tailored to your needs.

Some have a wealth of experience teaching business people in Germany and around the world. Others are brimming with enthusiasm in the spring of their career. All are excellent teachers.


Team Bios

Agnes Trapp
I'm from Nordrhein-Westfalia and came to Kassel in 1991. After my teacher training, I earned a Master’s in German Literature and Education. In 2006 I wrote my Ph. D. thesis about a very interesting German-Polish female author from the Golden Twenties. I’ve taught German since 2001. It’s like travelling around the world while staying in my home country - it's always exciting. And it's also interesting to get to know so many different professions. I really appreciate the trusting and supportive atmosphere of Finer English.
Claire Carter
I’m from the coastal city of Brighton in the south-east of England. I worked for one of the largest corporate companies in the UK as a business and sales trainer for over 10 years before moving to China to teach English. I joined Finer English in March 2018 and have settled into Kassel life quickly. I enjoy the variety of teaching students across different businesses with Finer English and creating bespoke lesson plans based on the students’ needs. When not working I enjoy exploring new areas and things to do in and around Kassel.
Cristina Mata
I joined the Finer English team in September 2015. Eight years ago I left my home country, Spain, where I studied to be a primary school teacher. I feel more fulfilled teaching Spanish to adults. In Madrid I completed my Master’s in Spanish as a foreign language. Since then I have being teaching the secrets of my language in Italy and Germany.
Destin Markland
I joined the Finer English team in September 2010. I'm from Montana, in the wild American West. I have a B.A. in French and Political Science, as well as a minor in Music Composition. When I discovered Finer English, I decided that Kassel is the perfect place for me to continue my English teaching career. I'm a 'people person' and that is one of the main reasons I love teaching. What other job allows you to develop relationships with so many people? I also love discussing ideas and hearing students' opinions. Teaching English is not just about grammar and vocabulary. It's also about giving students the skills and confidence they need to express themselves.
James Walsh
I'm originally from a town in northern England called Preston. I studied history and graduated from the University of Oxford in 2014. I first taught English in Moscow before joining Finer English in 2016. Kassel is a great city with a fascinating past and a vibrant modern business community. I really enjoy teaching English here as part of the Finer English team because no two days are ever the same and I'm constantly meeting new people. English is my native language but in my spare time I am a student of German, Russian and Norwegian. I also love to learn about the history and development of languages. I hope that in the future we can share and develop this passion together.
Jane Oliveira-Holzkamp
I’m from the province of Bahia in Brazil. I studied at the Federal University of Bahia and graduated as a teacher for natural sciences. After several years of development work in South America, my family and I moved to Kassel where I’m delighted to be a member of the Finer English team as a teacher of Portuguese.

Janine Magnussen
I started working for Finer English in September 2009 and enjoy it very much. As a link between teachers and administration, I do all the preparation work for invoicing. I’m always looking forward to our meetings because it's so interesting to get to know all the teachers from foreign countries with different backgrounds and amazing stories. Since our business language is English, I enjoy the opportunity to improve my English constantly.

Joe Finer
Joe Finer
I consider myself extremely fortunate to have such a stimulating and satisfying job. I love language and working with people. So this is the ideal job for me. It's a delight and a privilege to work with our splendid team of talented teachers, almost all of whom have travelled half-way round the world to be here in Kassel. I'm originally from Canada but spent half my life in England. But home is where the heart is and that, for me, is Kassel.

Julie B.
Julie Bastien
I've been a French teacher in the Finer English team since September 2010. I’m from Quebec in Canada and have lived in Germany since November 2004. I worked as an interior designer in Canada for over 10 years and parallel to that took courses in psychology and administration. On my arrival in Germany, I made use of the opportunity I was offered and fulfilled one of my dreams: to teach French. At Finer English I really appreciate the professionalism and the support they offer. It’s great to share ideas with other colleagues and to learn from their experiences. I really enjoy teaching French: it’s great to give others an understanding of my native language and culture.

Kardelen Gunaydin
I’m a master’s student in Global Political Economy at the University of Kassel and have been living in Germany for more than a year. I started working with Finer English in May 2016 and have had a great experience with my students and the team. I grew up in Istanbul, Turkey and learned English at a young age. During my BA in International Relations, I worked at a variety of jobs to finance my studies: as a translator, teacher and as a proof-reader. Working at Finer English has allowed me to acquaint myself with German business culture, as well as meet kind and motivated people from all walks of life.

Kathy Hilbrig
I was born in Cambridgeshire but lived in the north-east of England most of my life. Arriving in Germany in 1993, I started work immediately with the Berlitz Language School in Leipzig. This was a very exciting time; just four years after reunification. Although I had been teaching all my working life, I hadn’t taught the English language before. It was the best decision of my life. I came to Finer English in early 2018, and the team’s refreshing approach to teaching a foreign language is right up my street.

Kayla Frye
I hail from the small riverside city of Knoxville, Tennessee, in the United States. There, I completed my Bachelor’s in Global Studies with a concentration in politics and economics in 2016. While in school, I learned to truly love the power of language and got my start as a teacher and community volunteer. After being accepted into the Global Political Economy MA program at the University of Kassel, I decided to work with Finer English. This has been a wonderful opportunity for me to learn about the diverse and motivated people living in Kassel. I am excited to keep doing this interesting and rewarding work with the help of the ever-supportive Finer English team.

Leslie Kay
I came from New York to Kassel in 2004 and have fallen in love with the city. I have been teaching English since I arrived and joined the Finer English team in August 2014. Over the years, I feel I have learned as much from the clients I teach as they have learned English from me. I am excited to be a part of the Finer English team and appreciate the encouragement, support and friendship they have offered me.

Micha Challal
I’ve been working for Finer English since the spring of 2001 and enjoy it very much. I do all the invoicing and other necessary office work. I take care of the teachers' needs when they first come to Kassel, helping them find accommodation and showing them around the city. I support them in all bureaucratic questions like getting registered with the government authorities or opening a bank account. It’s a pleasure and a real enrichment to get to know people from all over the world. I’m German and have always spoken English quite well. Finer English gives me the opportunity to improve my English constantly as it’s our business language.

Milagros Hernández
I studied German language and literature in my hometown, Havana, Cuba. Through a variety of activities I developed a deep knowledge of the German and Spanish languages and their mediation. In Kassel, where I’ve lived with my husband since 2006, I extended my training by way of a master’s degree in German as a foreign language. Languages have occupied me for more than half my life. I love to learn them and to teach them. At Finer English, the diversity of the teachers’ various cultures is a genuine richness.

Norman Warrilow
Winston Churchill once called it “the workshop of the world”, we called it “the black country” due to heavy industrialisation and most people today call it Birmingham or the West Midlands - that is where I was born. The journey from there to Kassel has taken in London, Australia and quite a few countries in between. I’ve taught English in most of them and played tennis in all of them. I’m grateful for the opportunity to pass on some of those skills to new students of English in Kassel now that my partner and baby and I have settled here. When not teaching I hope to find time to rejuvenate the backhand.
Oliver Grund
Interestingly enough, I'm one of only two Finer English teachers who were actually born in Kassel. So, starting my teaching job for Finer English in 1999 was, in a way, 'back to the roots' for me after having studied in the United States for several years. One of the things I like most about my job as both a German and an English teacher for Finer English is working with students who really want to learn. I also find it very stimulating to work together with colleagues from around the world. In my leisure time you can find me running through the dense woods that surround the city of Kassel.

Ray Gard
I joined the Finer English team in August 2014 and travel across the border into Hessen to work with a wide and fascinating range of people as they grapple with the English language. I live in Lower Saxony and enjoy being back in a large town like Kassel. I was born and brought up in Liverpool which explains my inherent abilities in football. I have lived in Germany since 2002 and spent much of that time teaching English in different settings. Prior to that, I spent my time in the UK in places as disparate as Kent and Cardiff and a number of places in between.

Tanja Troll
I was born in Kassel. I teach German for the Finer English team. What I appreciate most in my work is that I get to know many kind and open-minded people with whom I can talk about different origins, opinions, interests and work. During my free time I read a lot, do sports (skating and cycling) and I like visits to the cinema or little concerts.

Tetsu Kido
I’m a freelance journalist and Japanese teacher. I’ve been teaching Japanese in Kassel for the past 25 years and began teaching for Finer English in July 2015. Finer English is like a breath of fresh air. That’s what I’d like my students to say about me.

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