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Some of the teachers at Mercer Education:

Eric Cohen

Eric Cohen

Eric Cohen established Mercer Education in 1999 after having taught ESL, language arts and SAT test prep for over thirteen years in Taipei, New York City, Paris, San Francisco and Seattle. He graduated from Phillips Academy (Andover) in 1983 and was awarded a B.A. from Harvard University cum laude in East Asian Languages and Civilizations in 1988. In addition, Eric earned a post-baccalaureate certificate in Teaching ESL from Seattle University in 1997.

While acting as the president and principal instructor of Mercer Education, Eric leads a team of highly qualified teachers who all share the same passion for the pedagogy of English, literature and math. Together they are committed to presenting a fresh, unique enrichment education service of exceptional quality and scope.

Lorelei Arzaga

Lorelei Arzaga graduated with distinction earning a B.A. degree in English from California State University, Fullerton, and a M.A. degree in English Literature from California State University, Long Beach.  Committed to the field of education, Lorelei has created curriculum for and taught courses in several venues ranging from Language Arts courses for middle-to-high school students, to Literature and Composition coursework at colleges and universities in California and Washington.  She has done extensive volunteer work offering ESL classes at community centers and in school and library programs. Lorelei has held managerial positions in primarily not-for-profit environments that support the arts and social services. Promoting poetry is one of her passions in life toward which end she has conducted and participated in numerous events that showcase the power of language art and the spoken word. Lorelei joined ME in 2001 and wears many hats including school administration, curriculum development, and program management. She finds her work at Mercer extremely rewarding in that it offers a creative milieu in which to explore and build unique educational programs and enriching relationships in the teaching and learning community. During her free time, Lorelei kayaks, plays tennis, and tries her hand at DIY projects come rain or shine.

Lorelei Arzaga
Brian Goedde

Brian Goedde

Brian Goedde graduated magna cum laude from New York University in 1999, earning a B.A. in Literature. He has since been a writer and editor for various newspapers and magazines, including staff positions at The Rocket and The Stranger, and has presented essays at conferences such as the Richard Hugo House's Annual Inquiry and the EMP's Pop Music Conference. In 2001 his chapbook of criticism, The World Is Yours: The Geography of Hiphop, was published by 10th Ave E Press.

Brian tutored students in ESL and Language Arts all through college, and has been a writing mentor at the Richard Hugo House and an ESL instructor at Casa Latina, both in Seattle. In addition to ESL, he has extensive experience in working with students diagnosed with ADD and/or ADHD. He also teaches the literature course Music Criticism Beyond Air Guitar at the ASUW Experimental College, and is working on a CD of music criticism with an Artist Support award from Jack Straw Studios. Brian joined Mercer Education in January of 2003.

George Herland

George Herland joined Mercer Education in 2003. He earned a B.A. from the College of William and Mary in Virginia and a Master’s degree from New York University where he was also a candidate for the Ph.D. Most recently, George taught at Lakeside School in Seattle where he was also the high school principal. Prior to coming to Seattle to take up the upper school directorship at Lakeside, he was for ten years the principal at the Packer Collegiate Institute in Brooklyn Heights, New York. He has also taught at Trinity School in Manhattan. For one year George was a guest curator for the New York Historical Society and for one term, a school teaching fellow at the University of Saint Andrews in Scotland. He is married and has three children.

George Herland
Michael Lloyd

Michael Lloyd

Michael Lloyd graduated from the University of Leeds, a member of the Russell Group (the British Ivy League) where he earned a PhD in Materials Science, along with a Bachelor of Engineering degree and a Post Graduate Certificate in Education in Physics and General Science.  He is an experienced educator, having taught both in the United Kingdom and in the USA, and has taught a wide range of students and subjects varying from elementary school science, middle school and high school English and math, to college-level Calculus and Physics. During his teaching career, Michael has pioneered the use of online teaching in Physics at the college level, developed the Gifted and Talented Student scheme in Leeds, UK, and has been awarded a British government Investors in People designation. Michael joined the faculty at ME in 2007 and finds the environment a perfect match for his teaching goals: providing an upbeat, friendly learning experience for his students to help them fulfill their potentials and maximize their academic achievements. When not teaching, Michael can be found writing; he is a published short story writer and reviewer, or he may be studying music, theology or just simply following the Seahawks, Mariners, and Liverpool FC.

Brian Knoerlein

Brian Knoerlein graduated from Towson University in Baltimore, Maryland with a Bachelor of Science degree in English/Secondary Education. After teaching in the Baltimore County Public Schools system for two years, he felt the need to broaden his teaching credentials with an extended stint overseas. As a JET Program participant he taught ESL in Yamanashi, Japan for three years. Eager to experience different educational systems, Brian then worked in Invercargill, New Zealand where he taught both Language Arts and English Literature.  Still intent on seeing the world, Brian then traveled throughout sub-Saharan Africa and continued on to Santorini, Greece where he taught ESL classes and worked in the hospitality industry.  Returning to the U.S., Brian again worked in BCPS, this time for 9 years as a Language Arts teacher and Interdisciplinary Team Leader.  During this time in Baltimore he also completed graduate work in ESL at University of Maryland Baltimore County.  Having traveled to over 30 countries on five continents, Brian brings a wealth of cultural and real-world experience to the classroom.  As a father of two, Brian sees the value in building academic self-confidence as well as intellectual poise in young people and feels that these two traits are fundamental to students’ success. Brian joined Mercer Education in 2010 and enjoys teaching in an environment which fosters his inherent desire as a lifelong educator to see his students succeed in all their academic endeavors.

Brian Knoerlein
Eric Flesher

Eric Flesher

Eric Flesher earned his D.M.A. degree in music composition from the University of Washington, and additionally holds degrees from the Hochschule für Musik “Hanns Eisler” Berlin (Artistic Continuing Studies Diploma), University of Cambridge (M. Phil.), and California State University, Northridge (B.M). Eric has over 15 years of teaching experience, having held faculty positions at both the University of Washington and Central Washington University. As a university instructor, he has spent many years advising and editing master’s theses and senior capstone projects and has authored numerous academic research articles. His published writings include art reviews for the University of Washington Daily, and a book chapter published jointly by Perspectives of New Music and University of Washington Press. He has also taught pre-college students at the Academy of Music Northwest since 1998, and has additionally served as the Academy’s provost. Eric joined the faculty at Mercer Education in 2012 where his expertise and passion for curricular development and teaching are put to excellent use as he conducts a variety of classes in Language Arts, English, SAT Prep, and College Admissions. Eric lives in Seattle with his wife Harumi, who is a concert pianist, and spends his free time cooking, learning Japanese, and making music.

James Pyle

James Pyle earned his B.A. in Humanities (emphasis in Literature), from Concordia University, California. While there James worked as both a writing center tutor and a TA. It was during this time that James discovered his love for teaching. After earning both a M.A. in English and a M.F.A. in Creative Writing from Chapman University, James returned to Concordia where he spent two years as an instructor in the English Department. After relocating to Washington, he spent a year as a Program Manager in the Department of Continuing Education at Bellevue College. James soon after returned to what he likes most, teaching, and is currently an Adjunct Professor of English at Green River Community College. James recently joined the faculty at Mercer Education and is excited about the opportunities presented in this unique educational environment. James joined Mercer Education in December 2014.

James Pyle
Azadeh Rezaei Smith

Azadeh Rezaei Smith

Azadeh Rezaei Smith completed her undergraduate degree in Applied Mathematics at the Industrial University of Khaje Nasir (Tehran) in her home country of Iran. Azadeh started her teaching career while earning her Bachelor’s degree and, while completing her Master’s degree in E-Learning Technologies at Multimedia University, Malaysia, she continued to teach and research the usage of multimedia in today's educational system. Living in Malaysia, Azadeh had the opportunity to teach in diverse classroom environments, including International Schools, and to do more in-depth research on the effectiveness of Multimedia in today's learning performance and millennials' lives. Soon after moving to Washington in 2014, Azadeh joined Mercer Education where she has effectively drawn from over eight years of teaching experience and commitment to create a vibrant and rewarding learning experience for her students. While at ME, Azadeh has taught math to private students, small year-round groups, and intensive SAT camps. When she is not teaching, Azadeh spends time reading and enjoying the companionship of Bella, her dog.

Chung-Hee Lee

Chung-Hee Lee graduated from the University of Washington with double degrees in French Language and Literature and Psychology.  Pursuing her avid interests in other cultures, especially French, Chung-Hee lived and worked in Paris for several years, followed by stints in Seoul, London, Singapore, DC, New Jersey, and New York. After earning her Master’s Degree in education with ESL specialization from Fairleigh Dickinson University in NJ, Chung-Hee taught in both the US and UK public school systems, as well as core college English, business English, and adult language courses in various institutions.  Upon her return to the Seattle area in 2014, Chung-Hee joined Mercer Education where she brings over 13 years of wide-ranging teaching experience. As a devoted, enthusiastic educator who is committed to helping students realize their potentials, Chung-Hee finds teaching ME’s private and small group classes in English, Language Arts, standardized test preparation, ESL, and College Admissions Prep both personally and professionally rewarding. When she is not in the classroom, Chung-Hee can be spotted power-walking on the streets of Bellevue or indulging in her favorite pastimes of eating and reading about good food.

 

Chung-Hee Lee

Rachel Phillips

Rachel Phillips

Rachel Phillips earned both a Bachelor of Science degree in Nutrition and a Master’s Degree in Adult Education, Communications, and Sociology from Oregon State University, where she graduated magna cum laude. While at Oregon State, Rachel worked as a tutor and study facilitator for the university’s athletics department and taught communications and academic success courses as a graduate student. After graduation, Rachel continued to teach courses at local community colleges. Rachel joined Mercer Education’s teaching staff in 2015 where she teaches English, Language Arts, and standardized testing to private, group, and summer camp classes.  Rachel enjoys her work at ME in that the unique environment is one that offers her opportunities in small-class settings to creatively, effectively utilize her knowledge, experience, and teaching methodologies to produce meaningful, positive results with her students. In addition to teaching at ME, Rachel teaches English college-transition classes and computer basics classes at Edmonds Community College in Lynnwood. When she is not working, Rachel enjoys cooking, travelling, and spending time outdoors.

Julia Sweet

Julia Sweet earned her B.A. in English from Linfield College in 2004 and her M.A. in English from Iowa State University in 2006. During her time at Iowa State University, she taught English to incoming freshmen. After graduating from ISU, she moved to Seoul to teach English for YBM ECC for one year.  Upon her return, she earned a certificate in TESOL from S-TESL, which is accredited through Seattle University. She has continued to teach ESL privately and for local companies since then. She currently teaches English Composition for City University for Seattle, where she has also designed courses, including their writing lab. While at City U, Julia received the President’s Award for Excellence in Teaching for her curriculum development and dedication to promoting student success. Julia joined Mercer Education in 2015 where she teaches a wide-range of both private and small group classes in English, ESL, Language Arts, standardized test prep, intensive Summer Camp, and College Admissions Prep. Julia shares a deep commitment to each of her students’ academic well-being and finds the environment at ME an excellent setting to promote her philosophy and goals as a teacher.  In her spare time, Julia enjoys reading and writing poetry and fiction, cooking and baking, studying French, and knitting.

Juila Sweet

Amando Toribio

Amado Toribio

Amado Toribio graduated magna cum laude with a fine arts degree from California State University in Los Angeles. He discovered his love for teaching two years afterwards while volunteering to teach ceramics in an after school program in New York City. Eventually, he taught all four core subjects of English, math, the sciences, and social studies in two exceptional New York City public and private schools while earning a Master’s degree in Adolescent Education at Bank Street College and a Master’s in Educational Administration at Teachers’ College, Columbia University. Soon after moving to Seattle in 2005, Amado began working at University Prep in a number of capacities and where he currently teaches Middle school math. Amado joined Mercer Education in 2015 where he has unique opportunities to put to use his 20+ years of experience committed to helping students find and achieve their highest potential. At ME, Amado draws from a broad range of expertise to teach private and group classes in math, English, ESL, Language Arts, and standardized test preparation. When he's not in the classroom, Amado devotes time to his own children's academic and sports pursuits while adding to his portfolio of oil pastel works on paper.

Mat Yunker

Mat Yunker earned his PhD in Philosophy at the University of California, Irvine with the defense of his dissertation entitled "The Preconditional Value of Understanding," which advances a theory of the value of knowledge. People meeting Mat for the first time recognize immediately his passion for teaching and education. Mat has many years teaching a wide range of subjects at both high school and college levels. He has taught classes in composition, humanities, philosophy, logic, and SAT and ACT prep, and has tutored Spanish, Ancient Greek, English (grammar, writing, and literature), Chemistry, Biology, and math subjects from Geometry to Calculus. He is a veteran of Mercer Education’s highly successful and popular intensive summer programs and brings a dynamic mix of enthusiasm, dedication, and professionalism as a skilled educator into each classroom.  In his free time, Mat enjoys cooking, board games, and playing with his cats. Mat joined Mercer Education in 2015.

Mat Yonker

Bryce Goodwin

Bryce Goodwin

Bryce Goodwin has followed a successful though non-standard path to teaching.  In his own words, “I dropped out of high school when I was sixteen. I was a number of years ahead of my class in math and science, and at that point had already taken AP calculus and AP physics. I scored a 1420 (740/800 math) and 202 (80/80 math) on the SAT and PSAT respectively. At seventeen I scored a 27 on the AMATYC, the highest in the school and 16th in the northwest region (Washington, Oregon, Idaho, and Alaska).” Bryce then attended Cascadia and Seattle Central Community Colleges and subsequently has continued to study mathematics on his own. He has taught himself statistics, multivariable calculus, differential equations, analysis, and discreet mathematics. Bryce is currently studying abstract algebra and complex analysis with the assistance of several UW faculty members, and his long term goal is to be a mathematician.

Bryce’s other passion is teaching, and he has great success connecting with students of all ages. “I had a number of strong role models growing up, and being someone with whom students wish to interact and respect comes naturally to me. As a teacher, I emphasize a desire to learn over the importance of being correct.” For over three years Bryce taught mathematics to students of all ages at Mathnasium, and then, with state teaching certification through OSPI, for over a year he was an instructor of all levels of high school mathematics at Northwest Liberty School, an accredited high school in Woodinville.  Bryce joined Mercer Education in 2014 and works with younger students as well as with high school students preparing for the SAT, ACT and more advanced IB and AP subjects such as calculus, physics and statistics typical of the gifted programs at Interlake and other schools in the Bellevue School District.  In his free time, Bryce is a practitioner of the Japanese martial art Aikido, plays piano, and enjoys reading and the Mariners.


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