Meet The International TEFL Academy Staff


Matt Birgy

Admissions advisor

 What is your role at international TEFL Academy?

I’m an Admissions Advisor and jack of all trades.

What's Your Story?

I’m just a kid from the sticks who doesn’t take himself too seriously but expects a lot out of himself. Infinitely curious, I’m in my element when I’m out of my element. I’m not trying to save the world. I’d just like to see as much as possible and leave a kind impression on the people and environments I encounter along the way.  

Around ITA, I’m known for my undefeated record in limbo contests and stirring the pot.

Matt taught English in South Korea

TEFL Certification International TEFL Academy


Where are you from, where did you go to college & what did you major in at college?

Northern Michigan. Top o’ the Mitten to ya’. 

English Creative Writing Emphasis & German Studies. In my foreign language classes, I discovered a knack for accents/languages. My Professor suggested I study abroad. They enticed me with pictures of castles and steins of beer, then the German department actually offered me a scholarship! I decided to take the loot and give it a whirl.

What countries have you visited?

Germany, The Netherlands, Belgium, France, Luxembourg, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Italy, Austria, Hungary, South Korea, Japan, Thailand, Cambodia, Vietnam, Nepal, India, Mexico, Guatemala, Nicaragua, Belize, Dominican Republic, Costa Rica, Colombia, Panama and of course…Canada!

What's next on your list?

Iceland, Kyrgyzstan, and Brazil 

Where have you lived, worked or traveled abroad long-term?

Germany, South Korea and Colombia

What was one of your most memorable travel experiences?

There’s something about driving a motorcycle in SE Asia that gets me every time.

Having fun in Japan


The Thrill of Travel


ITA Staff Holiday Party

International TEFL Academy TEFL Certification

Name some of your favorite literature & media:

Books: Dharma Bums.

Websites: The random Reddit threads Ian sends me on Skype.

Films: Pulp Fiction. Deer Hunter. Royal Tennenbaums. Amelie.

TV: I don’t watch TV! But when I watch TV, it’s usually a basketball game. And when it’s a basketball game, it’s typically a Detroit Pistons Basketball game. Frankly, I don’t care about much else (on the TV, that is). I could Youtube Reggie Watts for hours if that counted. George Blaha would ‘count that baby and a foul’.  If you watch Detroit Basketball, you know what I’m talking about and I already consider you a friend.

Music: You ever seen the Spike Jonez movie Her where Joaquin Phoenix’s character Theodore falls in love with Samantha, the world’s first Artificially Intelligent Operating System?  That’s me with Spotify Premium.  Spotify, I can’t live without you or your advanced algorithms, which nail my musical preferences week in and week out.  Frankly, this makes me uncomfortable, because I do fear the robots.  But I’m a music lover first and I’m getting results, so for now, I’ve decided to play a willing role in the machine.

What is your favorite international cuisine?

Well of course I’m going to say sushi! But I also like just about anything that comes out of a Tandoori too.


Why do you like working at International TEFL Academy?

I seriously think every decent hearted individual should have the experience of living in a foreign country and for at least 6 months in their lives. The process itself, of making oneself a guest in a different culture, is an incredible opportunity for humility and self growth.  It renews an urgency to get-out-there-and-live, so to speak. I get to tell people, every day, that’s it’s possible to have that experience for themselves.   So yep, I’m on the side of having more “better” people in the world.

"I’m happy to share my story in hopes of helping other
International TEFL students connect to the world."