I’ve travelled the world mentoring students in Japan, forging houses in India, founding soccer programs in Costa Rica, and graduating teen moms in Texas. Education has captured my attention the world over. I’m eager to keep my hand in the field with Varsity Tutors. My other passions find me out on the pitch, drenched at Barton Springs, or languid in a Netflix puppy pile.
Undergraduate Degree: Rutgers University-Newark - Bachelors, Business Management
Graduate Degree: Texas State University-San Marcos - Masters, Education
What is your teaching philosophy?
My role is to give the student the confidence to work, persist, and succeed. People fear what they don't know. I am in the business of eradicating fear.
What might you do in a typical first session with a student?
I'd like to know what you need and figure out how you'd like to get there. I'm meant to be your educational facilitator.
How can you help a student become an independent learner?
I aim to help you recognize the intellectual resources you already have, and bring to light access to new tools you can take with you into the future.
How would you help a student stay motivated?
Motivation is the will to complete a goal while recognizing that life can be unpredictable. I like to get to know my clients and make sure we stay focused with mini goals.
If a student has difficulty learning a skill or concept, what would you do?
I like to try a visual or tactile learning method. Or, if something is not sinking in, working on a different but related concept to try and provide more context.
How do you help students who are struggling with reading comprehension?
I look for ways to break down difficult passages, by finding key terms or phrases. I would also find short texts related to student interest to encourage development of reading comprehension skills.
What strategies have you found to be most successful when you start to work with a student?
I develop a relationship by talking about myself and getting to know the student on a personal level.
How would you help a student get excited/engaged with a subject that they are struggling in?
I like to search out videos and real world concepts to make abstract problems tangible.
What techniques would you use to be sure that a student understands the material?
There's always practice, practice, practice. But there's nothing for deep understanding like teaching. I like to have my students explain things to others to fill gaps in their knowledge.
How do you build a student's confidence in a subject?
Baby steps. The best way to grow is a mix of developing skills so subtly you don't even know you're doing it and then trial by fire. First you gain the skills, then you test yourself to realize that even if you don't understand a concept yet, you can keep trying again.
How do you evaluate a student's needs?
Constant communication throughout the process and mini-assessments that allow the student to work through problems individually and explain their work.
How do you adapt your tutoring to the student's needs?
I create plans based on each student's personality and goals.
What types of materials do you typically use during a tutoring session?
Pencil, paper, calculator, web access, videos, projects, manipulatives, and sunshine.