I hail from Farmington, Connecticut, a quiet town with—you guessed it!—lots of farmland. I spent my childhood playing in the local woods and visiting Farmington’s many living history museums. I didn’t realize at the time what a gift it was to known my town’s history so intimately, nor did I realize how much this knowledge would inspire my future interest in creative writing, much of which is based on the combination of historical fact and narrative storytelling.
Being from a close-knit town, I was always fascinated by community building, an interest which led me to tutor reading, writing and math at a nearby Boys and Girls Club during high school. Still captivated by stories of people and place—and how they can best support each other—I majored in Urban Studies with a concentration in Urban Sustainability while at Stanford, where I graduated Phi Beta Kappa. I joke, however, that I really majored in ‘Trivial Pursuit,’ since my studies were broad and multidisciplinary, enriching many of my multifaceted interests: I minored in Italian, studied environmental science in Hawai’i, lived in a philosophy dorm, learned conservation photography in Costa Rica, and pursued my personal passion for creative writing. Evidently, I am a consummate life-long learner, and the only thing I like more than being a student is being a student twice over, that is, a teacher. At Stanford, I was an Italian Conversation Partner and a tutor for the intensive Structured Liberal Education program, and I led outdoor trips through Stanford Outdoor Ed. These activities, through which I had the opportunity to engage one-on-one with fellow students, were some of my favorites during my undergrad years.
At AJ, I tutor students in English, US History, and test preparation. What I love about teaching here is seeing students’ eyes light up with newfound recognition, unveiling the joys and surprises of learning. As a writer, I have a particular love for language and literature, based on my belief that stories are the building blocks of life, and I strive to share writing’s intense beauty and illumination of human nature with my students. My hope is that a student will become comfortable enough with the art of writing that she begins writing for fun, simply because she loves it! Similarly, I work to bring history to life as the most exciting story we will ever hear. I am continually devising new ways to make learning truly fun, magical, and exciting.
I believe that test preparation can be a major stepping stone for younger students as they begin their journeys towards success in high school. Exams like the SSAT, ISEE, and HSPT can transform from causes of anxiety to sources of confidence as each question becomes more familiar. I delight in unlocking the minds of the test-makers for those who are new to standardized tests. For the concepts to make sense, I take advantage of the one-on-one academic environment at AJ to ensure that each explanation is tailored to the specific learning style of my student.
In my free time, I am working on a book of creative nonfiction essays and maybe even a novel. Fellow literati: I am always taking book (and recipe!) recommendations. An avid outdoor enthusiast, you will most likely find me outside hiking, reading, or communing with the trees; I share my love for nature as a backpacking guide, co-leading adventures around Northern California.
- ISEE, HSPT, SSAT
- Academic English
- Academic US History
- Academic World History
- Academic Study Skills
- AP English Language and Composition
- AP English Literature and Composition
- AP US History
- AP World History
- Palo Alto