The Essential Learning Group has gone out of its way at every turn to welcome me as a colleague and a friend, and to make my transition into life in China as easy as possible.  Their hospitality and generosity have not only touched me personally, they go directly to the care and kindness that are the beating heart of this company.  Their extraordinary efforts on my behalf have made me feel welcome and have imbued me with the same spirit.

I had been in Shanghai three days when I found my apartment.  When I went to finalize the deal and take the keys, I was emotionally exhausted and, frankly, overwhelmed by the changes of the preceding few weeks.  When the landlord informed me that I would need to pay the first month’s rent – money that was not yet available to me – then, on the spot, or I could not take the keys and settle in, I began to feel utterly helpless.  As it happened two of my coworkers were with me, and they jumped to my rescue without a moment’s hesitation.  These wonderful, heroic people whom I’d met only days before reached into their wallets, and, miraculously took out enough cash to make up the difference and get my key.

What I must impress upon you is that the professionals at The Essential Learning Group are exceedingly kind people.  It was a simple enough gesture, and a debt that I repaid promptly, but in that moment their impulse of kindness made a tremendous difference in my life.  The level of kindness they showed me that day, they extend to clients time and time again.  There have been other times in my transition to life in Shanghai.  They have welcomed me into their harmonious, tightly knit community, and any time I have felt vulnerable or at a loss in this gigantic city, my friends and colleagues have been absolutely steadfast in their support for me.  I know that this year will be an incredible experience for me, and all credit is due to my colleagues at The Essential Learning Group.


Natalie Stewart

Natalie Stewart

Program Assistant

Natalie joined The Essential Learning Group in 2012 as a program assistant in The Innovative Learning Center, shortly after moving to Shanghai.