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"English training can be an agent of change in the hospitality industry. It strengthens an employee's relationship with his or her coworkers while encouraging self-discipline and self-awareness - removing 'the fear of messing up'. It broadens and deepens cultural identities. It develops professional and academic fortitude and leads to increased opportunity in the workplace. Most importantly, it develops agency. Agency is the ability to take initiative - it is the exact opposite of helplessness. And when you develop agency, you tend to act with purpose in order to achieve the conditions you desire at work and in life." - Rachael Nemeth, CEO/Founder of ESL Works in New York City

English is known to be one of the toughest languages to master - even when it's your native tongue. Luckily with this great challenge comes many resources, and even many now specifically geared towards those learning English as a Second Language (ESL) in the hospitality industry!

Online Resources:

For Hospitality Workers (self-study)

  • - This curated list reviews terms related to ESL learning as well as top resources for students (and teachers).
  • - This site is free with tons of vocabulary, lesson plans and quizzes to download.
  • - The 100% online course includes automated self-study activities and optional teacher-graded activities. Activities include reading, listening, writing, and speaking activities.
  • - An app that lets you learn English from popular talk shows, catchy music videos and funny commercials.  There are captions that are interactive. That means you can tap on any word to see an image, definition, and useful examples.
  • - Articles and resources for learning to speak english in the food service industry.
  • Social Media Channels - Use social media for educational purposes and learn conversational English (for free!).
  • - "Writing 101" resources for the basics of writing and grammar, covering topics like punctuation, commonly misued words, etc.

For Employers (for team training)

  • - Lessons by Keith Hardin, including practical resources and ideas for teaching students, plus step-by-step teacher's notes.
  • - A downloadable PDF with lesson plans, workbook activities, and quizzes
  • - Downloadable PDFs for vocabulary, pronunciation, workbook exercises, games, quizzes, reading, and role-playing interactions.

Local Resources by City:


Note: This list of resources is a small sampling (and a work-in-progress!) of the options that are currently available. If you'd like us to add one that you and/or your team have benefited from, please email us at [email protected]!