B-Speak! • English for Graduate Students and Professionals


Our Mission

Our goal is to increase the fluency, accuracy, confidence and comprehensibility of MBA applicants,  students and working professionals who are non-native speakers of English.  

Our Method

The B-Speak! method combines online course work with guided live video chat lessons with a skilled teacher. Whether you are preparing for your MBA application, interview, getting ready for the classroom, or seeking to improve your writing — B-Speak! can help.

Personalized Language Instruction

After a free consultation and careful assessment of your current English level, your teacher will customize your course by carefully selecting from online materials and structuring live lessons in the most advantageous way.


Improve your English Language Skills

Whether you are a highly skilled speaker who wishes to perfect pronunciation and advanced grammar, or a newer speaker needing practice in multiple areas, our teachers can help.


Supporting the Global Mission of Business Schools

We work closely with MBA Admissions, Student affairs and Career services to offer courses that will best serve the linguistic and cultural needs of international business students.

Learn more!


Contact Us

MBA applicants, students and professionals, contact us for a free consultation or with questions.

Contact Us


B-Speak! Course Modules

Our Team

Liz Launer

Liz joined the Speak! team in 2012 to help pilot the B-Speak! program. A New York native, she received her B.A. in Comparative Religion from NYU and an M.A. in English from Hunter College. She has over 20 years of experience editing and teaching writing and ESL at the college and professional level.  In addition to helping develop the B-Speak! curriculum, Liz coordinates B-Speak! and oversees teacher training.

Paula Levine

Born and raised in Texas, where her parents' first language was Yiddish, Paula has bachelor's and master's degrees in education. Her 19 years of ESL experience include university level instruction, public adult education and one-on-one work with academics and professionals. She derives deep pleasure from cross-cultural contact, the complexity of grammar and the remarkable ESL progress of motivated adults.

Joe Rockelmann

Joe Rockelmann is originally from Chicago but now lives in Virginia where he is a German and Rhetoric professor at Hampden Sydney College. He holds a BA in Psychology and German from Auburn University, an MBA from Roosevelt University, and an MA and Ph.D in German Literature from Purdue University. Joe has 17 years of teaching experience working with ESL students in the United States, Poland and South Korea.

Dawn Gaither

A native New Yorker with a B.A. in Political Science from Howard University and a J.D. from American University, Dawn traded her legal books for English texts 14 years ago when she started teaching ESL.  She earned her CELTA from the University of Cambridge in 2003.  Since returning to Washington, D.C., Dawn has taught journalists, business executives, diplomats, doctors, lawyers and graduate students. She is a huge fan of using real life materials to teach real life English with lots of enthusiasm, patience, and a warm American smile.

Ruth Salomon

Ruth Salomon is a National Merit Scholar with a BA in economics and an MA in international development, currently working toward the Cambridge University Certificate in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (CELTA) and ESL certification through the Virginia Department of Education.  Ruth is a long-time freelance writer, with experience working for the US Agency for International Development in Russia and Eastern Europe. Her focus is on integrating the subject matter with the current interests of the student, making the learning process interesting so that the material will be easy to remember. She also helps students with effective time management and study planning.

Doris Feldman

Doris earned her M.S. degree in Technical & Scientific Communications from James Madison University. Before joining the Speak! ESL team, Doris worked for several years as a writer for a global clinical research organization where she collaborated closely with business professionals and subject-matter experts whose first language was not English. She understands the communication challenges non-native English speakers face in the workplace. She is also an ESL literacy tutor and has had the opportunity to work with ESL speakers from many different countries—one-on-one and in small groups at all levels of English proficiency. These experiences working with diverse cultures and her love for learning inspired Doris to further her knowledge of English as a second language and become EFL/ESOL and Business English certified.


B-Speak really helped me improve my spoken and written English during my summer internship in the USA. Since I had to work with colleagues in a real work place (seriously, I am not in a classroom!) and report to my manager during my summer internship, communicating clearly in speaking and writing was critical. Also, I could save time with Skype because I did not need to waste time commuting to a language institute. All in all, I highly recommend B-Speak to international MBA students if you want to increase the possibility of getting a job in an English-speaking country. Thank you, B-Speak!

Brian K., McDonough School of Business

My teacher listened to my story and learning needs and remembered every detail, which I greatly appreciated. She also combined what I need to develop in speaking with what is demonstrated to be important in Darden MBA life. I found this 10-hour session very useful and I want to thank you all for your help!

Michael G., Darden School of Business

I definitely recommend this course since I could sense the improvement in my English skills. It not only encourages you to participate in class but also helps you with grammar and writing skills.

Victor M., Darden School of Business

I had a great experience at B-Speak! My teacher was awesome! It was very personalized to my needs. I’ve been studying English for 22 years, and this one was, by far, my best experience.

Mariano S., Darden

The B-Speak! course is a good opportunity to directly communicate with Americans, know their culture and idioms, and discuss with them about politics and economics.

Philip S., McDonough School of Business

 I believe this course is a great tool for MBA students coming to the U.S.  My instructor was very friendly and pleasant and I did not feel uncomfortable sharing my inhibitions with her. This is a great way to also gain knowledge and settle into ( only if you want to) the American culture–sports lingo, politics jargon and overall socio-economic landscape of the U.S.

Jayanti G., McDonough School of Business

My B-Speak! teacher was well prepared, knowledgeable, very enthusiastic and very engaging. She is a great teacher! – Duygu K.

I highly recommend the B-Speak! program. My pronunciation and fluency improved a lot, and my teacher gave me the confidence to get through the term. I recommend this program for students who worry about their language efficiency but have no time to participate in summer classes. The flexibility of time was great because I was busy with my work, and the pricing of this program is very reasonable, compared to other language programs.

Hongwu W., Darden School of Business

My pronunciation absolutely improved, and I learned better ways to structure my responses to questions. – Hao T.

My Skype lessons were very productive. It was very easy to communicate with my teacher and also very convenient. My teacher was always well prepared, and she helped me improve my grammar, pronunciation and some writing skills. I liked our face-to-face lessons even better, because I was able to learn about non-verbal communication.

Erin C., Darden School of Business