Featured Language Industry Professional: LEO’s Course Administrator Doha Zahreddine

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Doha Zahreddine headshot

On this Administrative Professional Day, we celebrate and feature the person all LEO students know as helpful and efficient support guru, our Course Administrator Doha! Doha is originally from Lebanon and has traveled extensively for school and work. She has graduated from the Lebanese Canadian University with Business Administration degree and has a Certificate in Professional Marketing from the Chartered Institute of Marketing CIM UK.

Doha worked at the British Council from 2012 to 2018 in the English & Exams department before she moved to Lebanon, where she joined the Modern University for Business and Sciences affiliated with Cardiff Metropolitan University in UK as a Collaborative Provisions Officer. She started at LEO as an E-learning Course Administrator in 2020. Here she applies her experience in education and language testing, and expands her knowledge of E-learning approaches, assessment methods and new training programs for interpreters and translators.

She enjoys learning new things and working with students and colleagues from different parts of the world, which “is a great experience in itself because we learn from each other, share knowledge and enjoy the cultural differences”. We asked Doha some question to let you get to know her better.

Q: What is your favorite part of the job at LEO? 

A: My favorite part is that my job never gets boring, there are new things to learn and solve almost every day at LEO. Working with students and clients from different linguistic and cultural backgrounds is really interesting, especially when my role and assistance contribute to their learning and career advancement.

Q: How did you start in the language industry?

A: In 2012, I joined the British Council in Saudi Arabia as Examination Services Assistant for the IELTS department. My journey continued until 2018 in the English & Exams department where I held the positions of UK Qualifications Officer and Exams Manager for different types of English Language Proficiency tests. I worked with students and clients who needed to test their English fluency level for work, study or immigration purposes. I was also in charge of testing students for oral French (their third language) as part of their exams with Cambridge Assessment International Education. This was a great opportunity for me to understand that language industry is a dynamic and creative industry that is in high demand by students, employers and workers of different sectors. It is also obvious that this is a fast-changing industry with technological advancements and emergent challenges.

Q: Which languages do you speak apart from Arabic and English? Which would you like to learn?

A: I also speak French. I would like to learn Spanish as it is one of the most widely spoken languages and it will be advantageous for my career development.

Q: Do you like to travel? Which countries have you been to? Which did you like most and why?

Sri LankaA: Traveling is one of the best ways to enhance personal growth. Through traveling, our preconceptions are challenged and it’s a great opportunity to discover the world’s incredible cultural diversity. I was born and raised in Lebanon and have been to Saudi Arabia and Bahrain for residence, Sri Lanka for work, Turkey for work and tourism. I’d like to visit Sri Lanka again because their culture is quite different from ours and the lifestyle is not similar to the other countries I’ve visited. 

Q: What is your favorite book? 

A: “The Prince” by Niccolò Machiavelli. In this book, Machiavelli defines the virtues that are praised by people, such as generosity, compassion, and piety. He believed that a leader rules well when he understands public and private morality as two different things. His theories and beliefs are still currently applied even though the book was written in 1513, which shows that human nature does not change that much over years and centuries.

Let go of perfectionism, but never stop learning

Q: With your extremely busy schedule, do you have any tips for balancing life and work? Or time management, since you juggle so many different tasks at LEO?

A: I usually start with determining my priorities and preparing a to-do list for my personal and work-related tasks. I learned to let go of perfectionism, and that helped me cope with difficult circumstances. I also do my best to spend quality time with my family on sports and outdoor events, so we can all have fun and reduce the stress.

Q: What do you do to stay positive at this challenging time?

A: I start by gratefully accepting the challenging situation as is. I focus on the positive aspects of my life: family, health and work, and try – as much as I can – to avoid negative people. Moreover, I enjoy helping my kids and husband to improve their talents: my 10-year-old Roy likes video editing, 3-year-old Ryan likes dancing, and my husband’s talents are singing and playing piano and guitar.

Q: Wow, what an artistic family! What is your own special talent or hobby?

A: I like sports and reading, but my main hobby is cooking, which is also a good way to reduce stress. My favorite dishes are ravioli and ma’aloubeh (Lebanese dish made of eggplants, rice, meat and vegetables).

Q: Any additional advice for our students?

A: Whatever the circumstances and challenges are, keep in mind that knowledge is power, and NEVER stop learning!

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