English as an International Language

Faculty and Staff

Dr. Deborah Osborne, Coordinator
Professor of English and Linguistics
Herr House 8
(816) 584-6517

Dr. Deborah Osborne comes from Vancouver, B.C. Canada, so she too is an expatriate! She completed her B.A. in Linguistics (major) and French (minor), and her Ph.D in Linguistics at Simon Fraser University in Vancouver. She has traveled extensively and lived in many places. In her 34 year teaching career, she has taught linguistics, English composition, and ESL, and trained ESL teachers in Canada, Papua New Guinea, and several U.S. states. Her area of research is learner interlanguage, and how a learner’s native tongue influences the learning of another language, as well as devising creative teaching techniques. She is married, with two children.


Mr. Joe Cunningham, Instructor
Herr House 19
(816) 584-6792

Mr. Joe Cunningham is a California native, but since graduating from Loyola Marymount University (major: Theater Arts; minors: German, Psychology) he has lived in many other places. He and his wife moved to the Kansas City area four years ago and enjoy the wide-open spaces and friendly people of the Midwest. Mr. Cunningham’s expertise is in applied linguistics and foreign language education. He holds a M.A. in Teaching Foreign Languages from the Monterey Institute of International Studies and is currently finishing his Ph.D in German Applied Linguistics at the University of Kansas. He teaches both ESL and German, and conducts research in the area of computer-mediated communication for foreign language learning.

Adjunct Faculty, Fall 2010

Ms. Debbie Garza
Debbie Garza is originally from New Jersey. She received her BS with a double major in English Education and French Education from the University of Kansas and returned to complete her MA in French. After working in the business world for 15 years co-owning a human resources consulting company, she returned to school to receive her MS in Teaching English as a Second Language. She has been teaching ESL at the college level for 15 years and has just begun her PhD studies in that field with an emphasis in technology at the University of Kansas. She is married and has two children.

Ms. Gretchen Meinhardt
Gretchen Meinhardt grew up in the mountains of Colorado. She earned her bachelor’s degree from the University of Kansas (major: photojournalism and news writing), and worked as a newspaper photographer for several years. She returned to college to pursue a longtime interest in working with people from many cultures, earning an M.S. in education, with a focus on teaching English as a second language. She began teaching ESL in Kansas before moving to Kansas City 5 years ago. She is married, with two children.


Ms. Jennifer Woodford
Jennifer Woodford was born in Virginia, but calls New Orleans home and remembers the Mardi Gras season she celebrated for so many years. Jennifer completed her BA ( major: Spanish) at LSU and began teaching right out of college in private and parochial schools. Jennifer moved to Portland, Oregon where she first taught English as a Second Language at the Oregon Council for Hispanic Advancement. Three years ago Jennifer moved to the Kansas City area and completed her MA TESL at Avila University. Jennifer has a sister who lives here and enjoys the friendly Midwestern people and delicious Kansas City barbeque.

Ms. Nilufer Guler
Nilufer Guler comes from Turkey. She completed her B.A. in Foreign Language Education at the Middle East Technical University, Ankara, Turkey, and taught English as a Foreign Language at the primary, secondary, and tertiary level in her home country before moving to the United States. In 2005, she completed her M.A. in Linguistics at Ohio University, while gaining more teaching experience in ESL at the university and in a local high school and elementary school. Last year, Nilufer and her family moved to Missouri; she is currently pursuing her Ph.D in English Education at the University of Missouri, Columbia, while also teaching at Park University. She is married, with one child.