I am very happy to be a part of Varsity Tutors and have the opportunity to assist others achieve their goals!
A bit about myself: I graduated from Hamilton College in 2008, majoring in World Politics with a minor in Russian Studies. During my time at Hamilton, I was privileged to work with a refugee assistance group that tutored recent immigrants in English and helped them pass their citizenship exams. Working with groups of all ages I learned that establishing a comfortable environment for learning makes a big difference in helping people move beyond their discomfort in a topic and makes them more willingly to engage with the material. Providing a fun and constructive environment for learning is a strategy I believe in for anyone I tutor.
After college I worked for the inventor of the Segway and coached high school baseball before moving onto my Master's program in the UK. I graduated with honors from King's College London in 2012 with an MA in Intelligence & International Security. Using my coursework and interest in local history I wrote a dissertation on the British military and political strategy in Boston before the American Revolution. My graduate studies abroad provided an excellent setting for working with students of all ages and backgrounds from around the world and increased my ability to work effectively with a diverse group of people.
When I completed my dissertation I staffed a state campaign and for the last 3 years I have worked for a private non-profit focusing on issues of canine welfare. In this role I worked closely with local law enforcement and municipal governments on a variety of projects. I recently left this position to begin my service with the US Army Reserve.
In my spare time I like to hike with my dog (Watson), go fishing from my kayak, watch movies, read with my 2 year old godson and spend some time at my boxing club.
For me studying has always been about finding ways of completing assignments that utilize the strengths we each have. Even the most daunting tasks like a dissertation can be broken down into very manageable parts. With the right attitude and a good support system, I hope to help students find ways to approach new topics confidently and efficiently.
Hamilton College - Bachelors, World Politics
King's College London - Masters, Intelligence and International Security
College Level American History
High School English
High School Geography
High School Level American History
High School Political Science
High School World History
High School Writing
What strategies have you found to be most successful when you start to work with a student?
Finding an individualized connection to the material is an important aspect of comprehending material. I find it helpful to have students talk through the issues they are encountering and then find ways of helping them approach the same material from an easier perspective.
How do you evaluate a student's needs?
I like to have them describe their own views of their strengths and weaknesses. Often, students know what they need help with but are hesitant or embarrassed to ask for help. Talking things out in the beginning helps people get over that fear so they can get to work!
What is your teaching philosophy?
Everyone has the ability to be comfortable with any topic; the key is finding a way to make the material relatable to the student.
How can you help a student become an independent learner?
Give them a good structure for approaching assignments so they don't have to "reinvent the wheel" when confronted with a new challenge.