Basic English & IELTS Preparation

English Courses

Study, Relax, Enjoy !

Study Tours

Classrooms, Library, Student Lounge

GEC Facilities

TOEFL Testing Center


Our Teachers

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Teachers at GEC are all highly qualified and experienced and take part in an ongoing professional development programs. Our teachers are all native speakers, certified second language instructors, experienced, university graduates, dynamic and interesting.

arrow2 Teachers and Staff

The teaching staff at Global English Centre are all native English speakers and have post graduate qualifications in English language teaching as well as other experience.

The teaching staff are keen learners as well as teachers; they participate in professional development sessions, live classroom observations and keep up to date with the latest news and developments in English language teaching via professional journals, magazines and the internet.

The teaching staff at GEC have a good sense of humour, and enjoy talking to students to find out which parts of the lessons were most useful!

GEC Students will receive quality instruction from our team of teachers who are:

  • native speakers
  • university graduates
  • certified second language instructors
  • experienced
  • dynamic and interesting
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Michael Kehoe
Global English Centre

Michael Kehoe – Director Global English Centre

A message from Global English Centre’s Director:
Over my years in the Education industry and being able to remember what it felt like being a student, now as Director of
Global English Centre I know what is most important in running a successful language school as I understand what the students want and need.  More than anything else it is about having friendly, experienced, professional teachers that consistently provide interesting and motivating lessons for their students.  Thus, at GEC we are committed to excellence in teaching and what makes us really special is the caring and personalised attention teachers give students, both in and out of the classroom.

Our teachers are all university qualified, professional and experienced and take part in an ongoing professional development program and we are proud of the fact that GEC students consistently gain very good results in General English, IELTS, and TOEFL exams.

Our students tell us again and again how much they enjoy their GEC experience because they make new friends, develop their English skills with great teachers and get to experience the Malaysian way of life in beautiful Kota Kinabalu.
I know that when our students are happy our teachers are happy and vice versa.  This is what we strive for and this is what GEC continues to build its success on……a unique, friendly, vibrant atmosphere that balances serious study with a memorable experience.

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Sarah Bax – Director of Studies

Hi, I’m Sarah, from Australia. I have been working at GEC since its establishment and I am the school’s Senior Teacher and Director of Studies. I teach all levels of General English courses, beginners through advanced, and IELTS Preparation, both General and Academic here at GEC. I also administer all tests and plan special programs to meet student needs. I designed all the courses for Global English Centre and am responsible for updating and adding the material that is covered.I’ve lived and worked on 6 continents and numerous countries. I know what it’s like for students learning a foreign language and subjected to different customs away from home and family. Most student problems I’ve experienced firsthand so I know how they feel and what to suggest to make them more comfortable.

ESL, particularly IELTS, is my life choice: teaching, mentoring, designing special programs, testing, and student/teacher liaison. At GEC I’m the Senior Teacher, so I’m involved in everything concerning our students. My schedule also involves teaching various classes and it keeps me abreast of what’s really going on with students and teachers and allows me to solve small problems before they become large ones. I try to keep everyone happy. When I’m not working I enjoy painting. Education and painting are my passions!

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Nick Smith – Teacher

Hi, I’m Nick from England and I love teaching at Global English Centre! I have lived and worked in Sabah for more than 8 years. Working in Malaysia has given me the opportunity to teach people from all over the world to SCUBA Dive. Now I am able to bring the fun and enthusiasm to those learning English. The communication and teaching skills I developed through tourism have been a great asset for me. From the highest point of Mount Kinabalu to the deepest depths of Sipadan Island, Sabah has the best of everything and living here is awesome. Come and join us!

Some Fun Facts:

If I wasn’t an English teacher, I’d be… Bear Grylls!!! Nick Vs Wild sounds good to me.
When you’re in Kota Kinabalu, don’t miss… Kaamatan (Harvest Festival).
My English learning tip is… communicate about things that you have a passion for.


Richard Bowers – Teacher

I’m Richard from Australia. I love living in Kota Kinabalu because of the green hills everywhere. It has a natural feel to it, even though it is a city. And the sight of Mount Kinabalu in the distance reminds me there are places to visit here where the weather is cool. I enjoy teaching English because I can see the results. I have lived here for around 20 years, and have seen many of my past students do very well, with most studying overseas and returning as lawyers, doctors or business graduates. Their futures are rosy due, in part, to the assistance I have given them with their English.

Some Fun Facts:

At 8am on a Sunday, you’ll find me… going out to the Gaya Street Markets, there are always many interesting items to be found there!
When you’re in Kota Kinabalu, don’t miss… swimming in the rivers around Penampang.
My English learning tip is… don’t be afraid to make mistakes, it is all part of the learning process.


Stephen Foster – Teacher

Hi, I’m Stephen from England and I love teaching at Global English Centre! I have lived and worked in Sabah  for 10 years, growing up I also travelled and lived all over the world with my parents and spent the most part of my school days in boarding school in the UK . In several countries I have taught and managed various kinds of English courses at private language schools, universities and colleges but I must say nothing compares to GEC. Because of my love for wildlife and the rainforest, living in Kota Kinabalu is a perfect match! I spend my free time landscaping and trying to discover the different bird species here in Sabah, Malaysia! If you love nature and appreciate the outdoors, Kota Kinabalu is a great place to come. I hope to see you here one day soon!

Some Fun Facts:

If I wasn’t an English teacher, I’d be… Batman !!! The students say that I look like Bruce Wayne !! What do you think?
When you’re in Kota Kinabalu, don’t miss… Mount Kinabalu National Park
My English learning tip is… don’t be afraid to make mistakes and speak English ALL the time

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James Moloney – Teacher

Hi, I’m James from England. I’ve been living in Sabah for nearly 10 years and I am working hard to try and conquer Bahasa Malaysia. This has given me a real insight into learning a new language which I hope to bring to teaching English. In GEC I’ve found a place that lets me put all my enthusiasm towards teaching English not just in a classroom but also in practice during lots of fun activities the school organises around Kota Kinabalu. We work hard during the week and have fun on the weekends as well. I’m a very active person and this style of teaching fits me well, I hope to meet you soon in one of our classes or a tour.

Some Fun Facts:

If I wasn’t an English teacher, I’d be… a Photographer. I love taking pictures, especially underwater.
When you’re in Kota Kinabalu, don’t miss… Rafting, Padas river is awesome.
My English learning tip is… Don’t be shy, just try.


Daniel Broadhurst – Teacher

Hi, I’m Dan from Australia, I Grew up in Sydney, Australia surrounded by bush land. I was a keen boyscout who regularly camped, bushwalked and canoed around Sydneys beautiful waterways and national parks. I still very much enjoy the outdoor life today and that is what makes Sabah a perfect location because it offers all this and more. Sabah is now my second home, as I have been paying annual visits to friends and family in Sabah since 1994 and I have now permanently resided in Kota Kinabalu for the past 6 years. An experience that has helped shape the profession I have now chosen, teaching English, stems back to a memorable experience when I was part of a Japan exchange student programme at Takeda High School, Oita Prefecture, Kyushu. For me the rewarding part about teaching is to inspire learning and breed success in the students.  I get motivated from developing learning skills of the students and from encouraging the understanding of multicultural environment.

Some Fun Facts:

If I wasn’t an English teacher, I’d be… a Wildlife Rescue Worker. Being outside in the rainforests with the animals it is very relaxing.
When you’re in Kota Kinabalu, don’t miss… Diving, the islands and marine life around Sabah is fantastic.
My English learning tip is… Immerse yourself in the English Language, Practice makes Perfect !!

Alexandra Roditaki

Alexandra Roditaki – Teacher

Hi, my name is Alex and I have been living in Malaysia for 5 years now. I come from an English background but I grew up in Athens, Greece. My first visit to beautiful Sabah was in April of 2008, when I instantly fell in love with its breathtaking sceneries, hospitable people and of course, the delicious food! I decided to permanently move to Kota Kinabalu shortly after. I enjoy working in GEC because it provides students and teachers alike with a rich and ongoing learning experience and excellent services, set in the heart of a diverse, multicultural environment.

Some Fun Facts:

If I wasn’t an English teacher, I’d be… a video game designer.
When you’re in Kota Kinabalu, don’t miss… the sunset view from Tg. Aru.
My English learning tip is… go to Settings > Change Language > English. You’d be surprised by how useful simple tweaks can be when learning.

Sean Burton

Sean Burton – Teacher

My name is Sean Burton and I am from London in the United Kingdom. My background was in the Telecommunications industry where I worked as a corporate trainer. I have a passion for making music and have a modest recording studio where I spend my spare time. I love Malaysia especially the people, food, weather and various activities on offer. So I decided to come and work as a teacher here in Global English Centre. Where better to work than GEC? The environment here is very friendly. We have amazing facilities for both students and teachers. I consider myself lucky to be part of the GEC family. I get to work every day as part of a fun team. I really enjoy meeting different students from all over the world and helping them achieve their goals. So look no further and I will meet you all soon!

Some Fun Facts:

If I wasn’t an English teacher, I’d be… a music producer, I have a strong passion for producing music!
When you’re in Kota Kinabalu, don’t miss… The Klias River Cruise, the fireflies glowing during the night is really something special.
My English learning tip is… use English as much as possible and join our GEC Activities, it’s a great opportunity to practice what you have learnt in a FUN environment.


Phoebe – Teacher

Hello I am Phoebe, an Australian from the Gold Coast for the last few years I have enjoyed living here in Kota Kinabalu and intend to stay on enjoying life here in beautiful Sabah!My background in Australia includes a variety of teaching positions and training in various fields and I love to experience new cultures and experiences through travel and living abroad.  So far whilst living here I have conquered the epic climb to the summit of Mount Kinabalu and experienced the wonders of scuba diving at Sipadan.I thoroughly enjoy teaching and especially teaching English here in Global English Centreto the great mix of International Students. It is my goal to have each student not just benefit from each lesson but enjoy the entire course from start to finish!

Some Fun Facts:

If I wasn’t an English teacher, I’d be… master Chef! I love cooking!!!!
When you’re in Kota Kinabalu, don’t miss… climbing mount Kinabalu! But make sure you train hard!
My English learning tip is… enjoy, relax and have lots of fun !

Matt Labunda

Matt Labunda – Teacher

Hi, I’m Matt from England. I grew up in Yorkshire, UK, and because my mother is an English teacher I’ve always been good with grammar and spelling! I have a lot of family in Sabah and have been coming here for many years, so I understand how Malaysians speak English and what their problems are. I love working at GEC because of the environment that we have here, with friendly and motivated teachers and a fantastic mix of students from various countries. At GEC I mostly have been teaching grammar which is my favourite subject to teach. In fact, one of my passions is languages and especially the grammar of other languages, compared to English. In my spare time I also like to read and to travel. I hope to see you all here soon!

Some Fun Facts:

If I wasn’t an English teacher, I’d be… a lawyer, I have a strong interest in the law field and find it all very fascinating.
When you’re in Kota Kinabalu, don’t miss… Paintball, this is one of my favourite GEC Activities.
My English learning tip is… Learning grammar and understanding it will provide a basis for learning the English language.

David Holm

David Holm – Teacher

Hi, my name is David and I am from Tampa, Florida in the United States. In Florida I was a chemistry instructor at a local college where I had the pleasure of educating students of all ages. I moved to Kota Kinabalu in 2013 with my wife who is Kadazan; one of the many ethnic groups that calls Sabah home. Sabah is an amazing place! The people here are friendly, the food is delicious and the weather is always warm so that one can take advantage of the numerous beaches and water sports year round. I enjoy teaching at GEC because it gives me the opportunity to meet students from all over the world. I take great satisfaction when a dedicated English student achieves his goals. The GEC teachers are very helpful, friendly and provide their students the tools to learn English in a diverse, multicultural setting. If you want to learn English in a fun environment and meet people from all parts of the world then GEC is the place to be!

Some Fun Facts:

If I wasn’t an English teacher, I’d be… studying the Kadazan language and culture.
When you’re in Kota Kinabalu, don’t miss… the Lok Kawi Wildlife Park with its botanical trails and incredible assortment of animals from all over Borneo and around the world.  Don’t miss the orangutans!
My English learning tip is… practice makes perfect so use English whenever possible.  You’d be surprised at how much you can learn by simply trying!   Do not be afraid to make mistakes.  We often learn the most after making mistakes!

 Houran Dezfoli

Houran Dezfoli – Teacher

My name is Houran Dezfoli and I am from the States. I left home in 2013 to follow my passion which is traveling. I have travelled some parts of China and most of south East Asia. I absolutely treasure building beautiful memories along the way and really love the freedom that travelling gives me. If I am indoors during my spare time, I enjoy painting otherwise, I am very outdoorsy. Sabah is the perfect place for that. It has some of the most incredible islands for scuba diving and of course it has one of the most strikingly beautiful mountains (Mt. Kinabalu) to put on your ‘to climb list’. I also love the people of Malaysia and have felt nothing but respect and hospitality from them since I have been here. During my travels I discovered how rewarding teaching can be. I have now been teaching in Asia for about 3 years. I feel very fortunate to be working at GEC due to the many resources that it offers teachers and students. I work with a supportive team, who help me grow as a teacher, and broaden my skills and knowledge of teaching.

Some Fun Facts:

If I wasn’t an English teacher, I’d be… If I wasn’t an English teacher I would be a pilot.
When you’re in Kota Kinabalu, don’t miss… scuba diving. It’s a whole new world under the sea!
My English learning tip is… Get out of your comfort zone! Talk and think to yourself in English and learn the lyrics of your favorite English song and sing along and also don’t forget to pay attention to all the billboards signs/advertisements you see out around and ask questions !

 Lee Prescott

Lee Prescott – Teacher

My name Is Lee Prescott and I am from Widnes in the North West of England but Malaysia is now my new home. I was initially only here for travel but I liked the people so much that I decided to stay. Previous to being in Malaysia, I taught in China for nearly 3 years. This gave me invaluable experience in teaching English to non-native speakers. I am really passionate about making art and was lucky enough to have my own exhibition of art work Ningbo, China. Any free time that I have goes to creating new pieces of my work. I really like the atmosphere in GEC. I like the fact that the classes are small and intimate, which gives me the opportunity to teach to each students strength and weakness. The facilities here are excellent for both students and teachers. Anything you need, you can find.

Some Fun Facts:

If I wasn’t an English teacher, I’d be… I would be a full time artist.
When you’re in Kota Kinabalu, don’t miss… Mt Kinabalu. A majestic mountain towering over everything else.
My English learning tip is… My English learning tips is practice, practice, and practice, practice, and practice, and don’t forget to practice. Also don’t be afraid to make mistakes because that’s one of the main ways you learn.

 Vit Koudelka

Vit Koudelka – Teacher

Hello, my name is Vit and I have been living and teaching in Malaysia for about 1 year. I came to Malaysia from New Zealand as a traveller to explore this amazing country and after very short time I realized this is the right place for me to stay. Sabah is very exciting place with it’s deep forests, rich culture, traditions and many hidden gems waiting to be found. Here at GEC we all have a great opportunity to study and in professional environment, meet new people and make lasting memories.

Some Fun Facts:

If I wasn’t an English teacher, I’d be… a tour guide or working in a museum.
When you’re in Kota Kinabalu, don’t miss… Sapi Island
My English learning tip is… listen to everyday English on TV. Find yourself a funny show you like and try it with subtitles….or without 😉


Shalini Moses – Teacher

Hi my name is Shalini from Canada, and I have been teaching English for nearly 9 years now. I have had the opportunity to meet and teach students from different countries with diverse talents and capabilities. Helping each student progress is a challenge I am honored to accept daily and I strive to create a community of learners that nurtures this growth in a fun and positive environment. I came to Sabah 2 years ago and fell in love with the people and the beautiful beaches at Kota Kinabalu. I personally enjoy reading, singing, dancing and playing with my 3 year old son. I am so excited to be here and i look forward to meeting you soon!

Some Fun Facts:

If I wasn’t an English teacher, I’d be… a tour guide or working in a museum.
When you’re in Kota Kinabalu, don’t miss… D’place ,to enjoy local Sabahan delicacies with a view and entertainment.
My English learning tip is… Read newspapers,books,labels, cereal boxes, read everything and carry a tiny note book to write down new vocabularies you learn with its meaning.

Magdy Rafla – Teacher

Hi, I’m Magdy from Canada! I have lived in Kota Kinabalu, Sabah for more than 5 years. It’s a great City to live in, there is so much to do and many places to visit and not to mention, the weather is great! I love teaching at Global English Centre, I enjoy sharing my experience and knowledge with the students. Working at GEC has given me the opportunity to meet students from all over the world. My background previously was providing training in the Hotel Management and Hospitality sector, I love being able to extend my teaching skills now with English here at GEC.

Some Fun Facts:

If I wasn’t an English teacher, I’d be… a Hotel Manager.
When you’re in Kota Kinabalu, don’t miss… Kaamatan (Harvest Festival in May), Mount Kinabalu and you must eat the delicious local food and fruits available around KK.
My English learning tip is… don’t be shy to make mistakes, you can’t speak if you don’t try.

Nirwana Williams – Teacher

Hello, my name is Nirwana. I am from Manchester, United Kingdom but I have settled and called Sabah my home for the past 11 years. I came from an accountancy and law background where I worked as a Corporate Accountant, but I have found passion in teaching for the past 7 years. Coming to GEC to teach, I have to say is one of the most rewarding decisions I have made as the vibe at GEC is so uplifting for both teachers and students from all over the world. I found a great sense of fulfillment when students enjoy learning and continuously challenge themselves to learn English. I love spending time with my children, kickboxing and engaging with outdoor activities such as camping, cycling and hiking during my free time, Sabah surely has all the perfect sites for these. Come to GEC, where you will definitely enjoy learning English and be captivated with the beauty of Sabah.

Some Fun Facts:

If I wasn’t an English teacher, I’d be… a kickboxer fighter. I love kickboxing and trained 6 days a week for 3 hours each day for competitions. I have great interest in sports and fitness is a lifestyle for me.
When you’re in Kota Kinabalu, don’t miss… the Coral Flyer, island-to-island zipline between Sapi and Gaya Island for the thrill seekers. Nothing beats the feeling of flying across sea at speed of 55km/hour.
My English learning tip is… take chances! Whether you speak fluently in English or you don’t, just speak the language. That is how you will get better. Don’t be afraid to make mistakes as you will only improve from it!


Effy Ervina – Administration Executive Manager

Hi, I’m Effy and I’ve been working at GEC ever since it first opened in Kota Kinabalu, Sabah. My role here at Global English Centre is very interesting and unique. As the Administation Executive Manager, I am responsible for dealing with all students both Local and International as well. Meeting people from different countries and cultures and making new friends, is a wonderful experience for me. I think, Sabah is a wonderful place to study and work especially here at Kota Kinabalu (it is commonly called KK for short). Here you will meet with various ethnicities and races that all live together in our multi-cultural country! There is also a variety of unique foods that you can try and climbing Mount Kinabalu is one of the major attractions in KK, Sabah.I come from a small town, Kudat, Sabah. Since, English is not my first language, I do understand how difficult it can be for English second language students and I also understand and feel it is very important that students have the right place to study, a nice place with a friendly atmosphere, caring staff and what is most important in my opinion, is the attention to detail regarding the student’s performance. GEC provides and caters to all the student’s needs. So when you study at GEC you are making the right decision and you will never regret it!

So, ask me about everything when you arrive and I’ll be more than happy to help, I look forward to meeting you at GEC!


Ben Sitem – Operations Manager

My name is Ben from Kota Kinabalu, Sabah, Malaysia. I am the Operations Manager here at GEC, that means my job is to make sure that everything runs smoothly both in and outside of GEC. For all GEC Students, together with Sam I will be coordinating the organised tour activities that we conduct for the students. So if there is something you want to try or do in Sabah, be sure to let me know and I will try my best to make it a reality! I believe there needs to be a balance between studying hard and having a good time, if you enjoy what you are doing then you will be able to do it well so be sure to give yourself enough time to relax and enjoy during your time here at Kota Kinabalu. We have a really fun working and studying environment here and it really does feels like a home away from home for the staff and the students. I really enjoy going scuba diving with our International Students, its always guaranteed fun and a great way to spend the weekend.

I can’t wait to meet you at GEC on your first day, so come join us here at GEC and I will see you all soon !


Farhan Shah – International Student Coordinator

Greetings! I am Farhan, born and raised in Kota Kinabalu, Sabah, Malaysia. I am GEC’s International Student Coordinator, that means my job is to make sure that all students are safe, comfortable and most importantly, having a great time! I will be coordinating the airport pickup and departures and organising all the tour activities for the students. Being a licensed scuba diver combined with my tourism knowledge, I can arrange any tour activity that you want to try in Sabah as I have done most of them myself! For your info, English is the second official language in Malaysia and I believe, to learn more you have to communicate more. With good English communication, it will be much easier for you to meet new friends and also be able to learn different cultures both locally and internationally. Here at GEC, we will help you to become better with the English language in terms of conversation as well as correct grammar use. We have a really fun working and studying environment and it really does feel like one big family for both the staff and students. I really enjoy having conversations with our International Students as we can exchange knowledge about their culture as well as some phrases in their native language.

I can’t wait to meet you at the airport, so come and join us here at GEC, you won’t regret it even a bit!


Syahirah Nara – Student Services and Administration Officer

Hello! My name is Syahirah, you can call me by my nickname Ira and I’m from Malaysia. I was born and brought up in the city of Kota Kinabalu, Sabah, popularly known as ‘Land Below the Wind’ by most people. Living in this beautiful country with its multi-racial community and diverse languages, makes me more eager to know more about people and places through one most spoken (international) language which is, English. Therefore, working in Global English Centre as the Student Services & Administration Officer has provided me with an opportunity to meet students from all around the globe, where they can learn English professionally and efficiently. Personally, I myself love helping people when they are in need, therefore, should you study with us, I would be more than happy to always assist with what I can with an open heart. I believe we all have very different experiences and knowledge because we each have our own individual backgrounds from different countries, sthrough our English learning program, you can maximize mutual knowledge by communicating with each other. Thus, you are making the right decision by studying with us at GEC!

Come and join us to study English and meet with students from various countries! The GEC staff and team are looking forward to meet and welcome your arrival at Global English Centre. Hope to see you soon!


Danny Roys – Operations Assistant Manager

Greetings! I am Danny from Keningau, Sabah, Malaysia. I am one of the operations staff at GEC which means my task is to ensure everything from the airport pickup to your accommodation runs well. Talking about accommodation, handling the brand-new GEC Hotel (also known as Global Residency) is one of my main jobs. It is my honour to serve you at my best during your entire stay here. Name your problem, I will do my best to help! Apart from that, I always believe that we have to have fun while learning so that we can learn effectively. Therefore, I assist in conducting GEC tour activities for students so that you will be able to explore Kota Kinabalu, hence, have fun memories which will last forever.

Looking for the best place to study English? GEC is the right place for you then! We are looking forward to meeting you at GEC!


Douglas Wong – Accommodation Officer

Hello there! My name is Douglas and I am from Keningau, Sabah, Malaysia. I am the Accommodation Officer at GEC Hotel (Global Residency) which means I have to keep the hotel clean in order to make sure you to have a comfortable stay with us. I am having fun working in GEC as I have the opportunity to meet and assist many International Students from so many countries such as Japan, South Korea, Saudi Arabia, China, Gabon, Taiwan and many more. This has allowed me to learn a variety of cultures and views from different perspectives. In other words, GEC provides me the environment to grow and improve myself both as an employee but also as a person. I believe my experience so far at GEC is very similar to that of our students as GEC provides you with a top-class teaching and learning environment as well as high quality facilities. The GEC team is ready to help you to reach your potential and to achieve your dreams.

Waste your time no more, come and join us!

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