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150x150xPaulHeadshotWeb-150x150.jpg.pagespeed.ic.uGevA2PwzR          BLAKE  FRANCIS


12/2016 – 07/31/2020        VIPKID, Beijing Da Mi Technology Co., Ltd.

  • Taught more than 4,000 classes and maintain a 5/5 rating from parents
  • Participated in the VIPKID mentor program, promoting excellence in teaching


  • Edit English scripts for documentaries and special programming


  • Lecturer for Faculty of Journalism and Communication, English For Journalism course, Fall 2017
  • Guest lecturer for English For Journalism course, Fall 2015
  • Taught news writing and reporting
  • Incorporated common core standards into lessons


      • Taught Korean High School students English and speaking like a native speaker
      • Led Saturday newspaper club and advised students on the production of Link, the student newspaper


  • Marketing Director for in-house promotion
  • Created print advertisements
  • Proofed editorial and advertising copy
  • Account Executive for international clients

09/2011- 5/2015       NATIVE ENGLISH TEACHER, HO CHI MINH CITY, VIETNAM  Blake Academy, baenglish.com

Specialties: Business English, American pronunciation

      • Private ESL Tutor (more than 1200 hours of private tutoring)
      • Taught sixth and seventh grade at Huynh Tan Phat and Nguyen Thi Thap government schools
      • Taught business English and facilitated communication between Vietweek and foreign companies

08/2005- 09/2011      Publisher & Owner,  COLUMBIA CITY PAPER, LLC

      • Wrote monthly investigative features
      • Managed advertising sales representatives and annual revenue goals
      • Published local newsweekly that reached 70,000 readers each issue


      • University of West Florida, Teacher Ready, U.S.A. teacher certification course, August 2015
      • University of South Carolina, Columbia S.C., Bachelor of Arts in Journalism and Mass Communications, August 2000
      • Says-Hi TESOL, 150+ hours, October 2013


·Awarded Semi-Finalist at 2003 South Carolina Arts Commission Film Festival
·Awarded “Best Performance” at the 2002 Colossal Film Festival
·Selected for the 2000 American Advertising Federation competition
·Received 16 percent of the vote for S.C. House of Representatives in November 2000 election

Letters of reference:

October 21, 2018
To Whom it May Concern:
Please accept this letter as my recommendation of Mr. Paul Blake for any education-related positions for which he might apply at your institution.
I have had the pleasure of working with Mr. Blake during his tenure as a guest lecturer for our English for Journalism course at Ho Chi Minh University of Social Sciences and Humanities.
I am thoroughly impressed by Mr. Blake’s dedication and enthusiasm to the subject, as well as his commitment to the students and the mission of our institution.
Of Mr. Blake’s many qualities and unique skill set, I believe you will find him above all an individual of great integrity and diligence.  Again, I highly recommend Mr. Blake without qualification and am confident your organization’s mission will be successfully maintained from his service.
Please do not hesitate to contact me about Mr. Blake.
Sincerely yours,
Triệu Thanh Lê
University of Humanities and Social Sciences
Vice Dean, Faculty of Journalism and Communication

August 30, 2018


I unequivocally recommend Mr. Paul Blake for an English teaching position. As to my credentials, I am the former program manager of the South Carolina SmartState Program, a multi-billion-dollar economic development academic research program; I am currently an academic program manager for the University of South Carolina. My education background includes ancient languages, and I have also worked as an editor for major media organizations. Thus, I believe I am qualified to judge another person’s general language skills.

I have known Mr. Blake for approximately one decade. I met him in his capacity as the owner and editor of a weekly newspaper in Columbia, South Carolina. We have remained in regular contact during the past few years in which he has lived in Asia, speaking several times per week by telephone. We have also visited personally during his return trips to the United States.

Mr. Blake has an extraordinary talent for marketing and IT development, in addition to his general organizational and editorial skills. I am aware that he has taught English as a second language for the past several years. I have no doubt but that these schools at which he taught would provide glowing references of his abilities and skills, as well as his dedication to his students. In truth, I know of no person who has more resourcefulness, deliberateness and perseverance than Mr. Blake.

Also, not every person is equipped to live an expatriate life; Mr. Blake has proven himself in this manner over the past few years, adapting to the customs of his host countries. He would make an honorable representative of the United States serving at your language center. Mr. Blake will rise to the occasion of any assignment, I assure you. I UNRESERVEDLY recommend Mr. Blake.

Most sincerely,

Arik Bjorn
1001 True Street Columbia, SC 29209

August 30, 2018


I would like to recommend Mr. Paul Blake for a teaching position at your school. I’ve known Paul for 15 years and have long been impressed with his entrepreneurship in the field of journalism and his command of the English language. I’ve worked as an investigative reporter for more than 10 years, and I’ve won more than three dozen awards, including the Molly National Journalism Prize, the international Data Journalism Award, and the John Jay College/H.F. Guggenheim Excellence in Criminal Justice Reporting Award. I am also a two-time finalist for the prestigious Livingston Awards for Young Journalists. I am now an investigative reporter with Al Jazeera Media Network, reporting for and producing documentaries for Al Jazeera English and Al Jazeera America. I believe my experience in journalism, including reporting in Asia, qualifies me well to determine whether someone would succeed in teaching English to Asian students. With this in mind, I unreservedly recommend Paul for a teaching position.

In addition to his command of the English language and his previous track record of teaching in Vietnam, Paul has demonstrated hard work ethics, leadership, integrity, resourcefulness and flexibility throughout his career. Long before the implosion of the business model for journalism made entrepreneurs of every journalist, Paul was at the vanguard of finding a way to fund important public interest journalism through his weekly newspaper, Columbia City Paper, which during its time was a newspaper that had tremendous impact in South Carolina. Among Paul’s greatest strength is his ability to succeed in any environment and deal admirably with challenging situations. While running his newspaper in South Carolina, he successfully dealt with having both meager resources and ambitious goals, making a mark in the local journalism community despite having a shoestring budget.

In Vietnam, he successfully overcame cultural differences to quickly establish bonds with his students and foster and an environment most conducive to learning the English language. I hope you will give Paul serious consideration for your English teaching position. I know he will succeed admirably if chosen and serve as a model for future ESL teachers at your school. Should you have any questions, please do not hesitate to email me.


Trevor Aaronson