About Us

Our mission

Our mission is to help you learn English the way it’s really used by native speakers in everyday conversations. We think it is really important to learn English how it is really spoken. That’s why our episodes are always focused on real, current English. If you want to learn English for everyday use, you’ve come to the right place. At Culips, we help make English understandable. By listening to our podcast, you can learn natural expressions and conversational structure.

Who we are

We are podcasting from Montreal, Canada, home to a diverse population that celebrates a variety of cultures and languages; in fact most people here speak French and English, and a lot of people speak a third language.

Listening to our audio episodes is like sitting in on an interesting chat between good friends. Your fluency, comprehension, vocabulary, and understanding of common English expressions will improve naturally as you get to know our hosts and learn about interesting topics and trends in Canada and around the world.

In addition to the podcast, we have some great resources, called learning materials, that go along with each podcast. This includes complete transcripts, detailed explanations and even quizzes to test your comprehension. Our learning materials are accessed through membership fees. Our written learning materials help you to explore each episode further and learn more about the expressions and topics discussed in the show. They also help you to test your understanding of what you’ve learned.

Meet the team

Co-host, Content Creator, Audio Editor
Hi, I’m Andrew and I’m a content creator and co-host at Culips. I’m originally from the West Coast of Canada. I joined the Culips team while going to school in Read More
Andrew BatesCo-host, Content Creator, Audio Editor

Hi, I’m Andrew and I’m a content creator and co-host at Culips. I’m originally from the West Coast of Canada. I joined the Culips team while going to school in Montreal. In addition to working on Culips, I work as an English language instructor at a university in South Korea. I have a master’s degree in applied linguistics and I’m interested in how foreign languages can best be taught and learned. I love that Culips gives me an outlet to share my language and culture with anyone who’s curious. When I’m not podcasting, I like to make music, study Korean, play chess, and run. ?

Co-host
Hi! I learned about Culips when Andrew interviewed me for the podcast about 2 years ago. I love everything about language learning, especially learning about the cultural backgrounds and customs Read More
Suzanne CerretaCo-host

Hi! I learned about Culips when Andrew interviewed me for the podcast about 2 years ago. I love everything about language learning, especially learning about the cultural backgrounds and customs of different countries. I was born in the USA, in Brooklyn, New York, and I used to have a strong New York accent. I moved to Houston, Texas, when I was 12 years old, and I changed my accent so I could fit in with all the cheerleaders and cool people there! That was the beginning of my lifelong fascination with pronunciation, accents, and language. After university (Carnegie Mellon University, BFA), I moved back to New York City and worked as an actress in film, TV, and theatre. I also taught accents and dialects to actors and did voiceovers for various commercials. Now I live in Montreal, I’m finishing up a master’s degree in applied linguistics, and I’ve been learning French! It’s a joy to share my love of language, English pronunciation, and North American culture with the Culips community!

Co-host, Content Creator
Hi, I’m Morag and I’m a co-host and content creator here at Culips. I live in Montreal, but I’m originally from the West Coast of Canada. I recently graduated with Read More
Morag St. ClairCo-host, Content Creator

Hi, I’m Morag and I’m a co-host and content creator here at Culips. I live in Montreal, but I’m originally from the West Coast of Canada. I recently graduated with a master’s degree in English literature. I just started teaching English as a second languages, and I’m very happy to be able to share my love for the weird and wonderful English language! In my spare time, I like to bike, knit, and make vegan treats.

Co-founder, Operations/Marketing Manager
I enjoy learning languages. Back when I was studying English in my home country of Japan, I relied on textbooks and grammar-focused English classes as my main learning methods. This Read More
Yoshi kaneshimaCo-founder, Operations/Marketing Manager

I enjoy learning languages. Back when I was studying English in my home country of Japan, I relied on textbooks and grammar-focused English classes as my main learning methods. This was expensive and not very fun. After moving to the United States to go to college, I realized that I actually knew very little about the kind of English that native speakers really use in everyday conversations. Although my grammar may have been great, I realized that to really speak English fluently, the way native speakers do, I needed to understand the expressions and slang that native speakers use, as well as the culture. Now I’m passionate about providing a great way to learn English how it’s really spoken in everyday conversations, at no or little cost. Culips is an amazing way to do that, and it’s the kind of resource I wish had been available when I was studying English back in Japan. My goal for Culips is that we’ll be able to help millions of people around the globe to communicate fluently and confidently in English.

Co-founder, Co-host
Hi, I’m Harp and I’m one of the co-founders and co-hosts of Culips. Right before we started Culips, Yoshi, Maura, and I were studying French together and discussing our frustration Read More
Harp BrarCo-founder, Co-host

Hi, I’m Harp and I’m one of the co-founders and co-hosts of Culips. Right before we started Culips, Yoshi, Maura, and I were studying French together and discussing our frustration with being able to understand textbook French but not the language that we heard on the streets of Montreal. One idea led to another and Culips was created, a podcast for students wanting to learn natural English! I was born in northern British Columbia and spent my teenage years and early 20s in Edmonton, Alberta. I taught English as a second language in South Korea, which was a great experience. Afterwards, I travelled a lot in Asia and Europe before finally settling in Montreal, Quebec. I have been working in Human Resources for the past 8 years, mainly on the recruitment side. I’m currently on a 1-year maternity leave, caring for my infant son. It’s exciting to see him grow up in a bilingual city and a bilingual household. I speak to him in English and my husband speaks to him in French.

Co-founder, Co-host
Hello! I was really excited when I first heard about this English as a second language podcast project. It felt perfect for me. I’ve been teaching English for about 5 Read More
Maura SmithCo-founder, Co-host

Hello! I was really excited when I first heard about this English as a second language podcast project. It felt perfect for me. I’ve been teaching English for about 5 years now, in Quebec, Montreal, and Tokyo (Japan). I’ve really enjoyed doing that and learning about different cultures at the same time. Being a student of French myself, I completely understand how difficult it is to learn a new language. That’s also why I think it’s super important to learn a language how it’ actually spoken. I’ll always do my best to focus on modern English. I promise.

Managing Editor
Hi! I met the Culips team after I moved to Montreal from my home province of Ontario, Canada, to start a job as a medical editor, and I couldn’t wait Read More
Jessie CoxManaging Editor

Hi! I met the Culips team after I moved to Montreal from my home province of Ontario, Canada, to start a job as a medical editor, and I couldn’t wait to join in the fun! I first got involved in teaching English as a second language as a volunteer in university, and I’ve loved it ever since. I spent a year teaching English at a middle school in South Korea, and later I spent another 2 years in South Korea working as a freelance editor while my husband was teaching at an elementary school there. Now I live in Lyon, France, with my husband and our dog, where I work as a technical editor at an international agency that’s part of the United Nations. I love learning, and I love helping other people learn. So feel free to send any and all English or cultural questions our way!

WebMaster
Hi! Like most superheroes, I’ve got an alter ego: I’m “the tech guy” at Culips when I’m not running around in my cape fighting cybercrime as a cyber security engineer. Read More
Hussain MohammedWebMaster

Hi! Like most superheroes, I’ve got an alter ego: I’m “the tech guy” at Culips when I’m not running around in my cape fighting cybercrime as a cyber security engineer. I’ve been involved with Culips since the first or second iteration of its web design. Over the years, I’ve worked closely with Yoshi and rest of the team to redesign the website through multiple iterations, improve our online features, and resolve any technical issues. My goal with Culips has been to provide an uninterrupted, up-to-date, and best-possible end-user experience for the listeners.

English Editor
Hi! I first heard about Culips through Jessie, and I’m so excited to be part of the team. I’ve always been extremely passionate about education and the English language. After Read More
Stephanie MinelgaEnglish Editor

Hi! I first heard about Culips through Jessie, and I’m so excited to be part of the team. I’ve always been extremely passionate about education and the English language. After university, I worked as an education director, and part of my job was to build programs to remediate and develop specific academic and/or cognitive skills, including language acquisition. I then moved into editing and medical education, where I worked with both Steph MacLean and Jessie. I’m currently working as a freelance editor, which has allowed me to branch out and pursue many different areas of interest. I’ve lived in Montreal and the surrounding area my whole life. In my spare time, you can find me cooking, reading, or watching a movie. I sometimes knit and crochet, although my skills only extend to scarves and blankets.

English Editor
Hi! I got involved with the Culips team through Jessie, who I met while working as a copy editor for a medical education company. I’m now a freelance editor, which Read More
Stephanie MacLeanEnglish Editor

Hi! I got involved with the Culips team through Jessie, who I met while working as a copy editor for a medical education company. I’m now a freelance editor, which I particularly enjoy because I get to learn about many different fields and work with many different people. I grew up in Montreal and now I live just north of the city with my English-French-Italian family (although I don’t hear as much Italian around here as I’d like!). In my spare time, I love to sew, bake, and travel.

What does Culips mean anyway?

Culips is not an English word that you can find in the dictionary! We created the name Culips from Culture and Language. CUL for culture and LIPS for language (we use our lips to talk). And so every Culips episode has interesting elements of culture as well as language; they are inseparable!

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