ESL Students Achieve Success

Wednesday, March 22, 2023

ESL students, Eiji Hata and Kaito Nakayama, are experiencing success on and off the field this semester at Phoenix College. Both native speakers of Japanese, these teammates and college peers are not only improving their English skills as students of the Phoenix College ESL Program, but they are also perfecting their game of soccer as members of the Phoenix College Men’s Soccer team.

As many college athletes agree, being a student athlete is no easy task.  However, for Eiji and Kaito, it is clear that they are not only dedicated to their language studies but also to the sport of soccer.

“I would love to play soccer professionally either in Europe or for the United States,” Kaito said. 

Eiji also plans to play soccer while majoring in business at a university after completing his studies at Phoenix College. 

“Eiji and Kaito are prime examples of successful student athletes both on the soccer field and in the classroom.  As athletes, they have contributed to the soccer team’s successful season in making it to the state championship!  As students, they work hard to complete their studies and earn good marks for their efforts.  This special combination that Eiji and Kaito bring of good athletics and good academics is inspiring to their ESL classmates,” said Jeff Eldot, ESL Program Director.

As members of the Phoenix College Men’s Soccer Team, Eiji and Kaito recently returned from the National Championships at Kino North Sports Complex in Tucson, Arizona.  The team finished in the Top 4 in the United States. Phoenix College is proud of their success!

The ESL program at Phoenix College offers students one of the most diverse language learning programs in Arizona.  Our ESL students come from more than 100 different countries, speaking 50 different languages.  Additionally, the ESL Program at Phoenix College offers the most variety of classes of any of the 10 colleges in the Maricopa County Community College District from basic English to Freshman Composition and Research.  Students may enroll in ESL classes now by going to or calling (602) 285-7375.