IRCNOCO Teaching Staff
The Immigrant and Refugee Center of Northern Colorado is incredibly grateful for the talented and dedicated teaching staff who work daily to help our students.
Kathy thoroughly enjoys the opportunity to be learning with the students at IRC. Their enthusiasm and perseverance inspires her. She earned her B.A. in English from James Madison University and her M.A. in Education from West Texas A & M. Kathy began teaching sixth grade language arts in 1998 and has been teaching a variety of elementary grades since moving to Colorado in 2007. She is grateful for every opportunity she gets to be with her husband, sons, their wives, and her grandsons.
Pete earned his B.A., M.A., Ed.S., and school administrator's license from the University of Northern Colorado. He taught English at Windsor High School for 22 years and worked as an administrator in the Weld Re-4 School District office for another 12 years before his retirement. Now Pete enjoys spending more time with his wonderful wife, Colleen, and enjoys his new hobby, playing classical guitar. He loves to read and to play with technology as well. But teaching classes for IRC is one of his greatest joys. "What could be better than exploring new learning with such dedicated adult students? I learn much more from them than they do from me." Pete has his ABEA (Adult Basic Education Authorization) license from the Colorado Department of Education.
Mary graduated from Hope College, in Holland, Michigan, with Psychology/Sociology & Social Studies majors along with an elementary teaching certificate. She has taught school and directed programs for children ages preschool - middle school. Over the last few years she has discovered the joy of teaching adults. "Teaching at [IRC] is an incredible privilege! I love the cultural diversity in my classroom. I love encouraging and cheering for my students as they work hard to learn English." Mary enjoys running and biking with her husband, Don.
Tony is a native of Colorado and earned a Bachelors degree in Music from the University of Northern Colorado in 1996. He has always had a passion for music and has been playing and writing music as a vocation for over 20 years. He lived in Wyoming for 13 years where he worked teaching and mentoring students through a campus ministry at the University of Wyoming. Since returning to Greeley in 2010, Tony has done some second degree studies in Spanish at the University of Northern Colorado and enjoys investing as much time as he can in learning about and from the immigrant and refugee populations in our area. "Volunteering with ESL and Teaching the Citizenship Class has reminded me just how much I enjoy teaching adult learners. They have such a desire to gain skills that will improve their lives and the lives of those around them. What a privilege it is for me to serve them in this way!"
Karin has been teaching English to speakers of other languages since working in the People's Republic of China in 1990. She has a B.A. in English from Colorado State University (1990) and an M.A. in Curriculum and Instruction for TESOL from the University of Colorado at Denver (1995). She has lived in the U.K., China, and France, and traveled to Japan, Canada, and Mexico. She has been privileged to teach learners of English from preschool, elementary, middle, and high school levels, as well as post-secondary students in intensive English programs, all the way to future teachers in a Master's degree program. Her greatest joy in working with people of other languages and cultures has been learning how people have so very much in common with one another. Her interests are reading books and writing, watching movies and series on Netflix, and going to films and other cultural events.
Rachel has always been interested in learning about people and different cultures. In 2014 she moved to
Greeley and discovered what used to be the Global Refugee Center and started as a volunteer
developing relationships in the classroom. During her time as a volunteer, she was asked to occasionally
sub for teachers and then eventually to teach a class! Very inexperienced, she tried the best she could,
and loved it, but knew she wanted to be more effective in helping the refugees learn English and
become more integrated in this new American culture. The following spring, she started her teaching
certificate at Front Range Community College for English as a second/foreign language and graduated
that following winter. During her time in school her passion for teaching and working with refugees and
immigrants in the U.S. kept growing stronger and wanted to be as involved as possible. Rachel began her
first year teaching at [IRC NoCo] January of 2016 and is loving every minute of it!
Julie attended the University of Michigan as an undergraduate and Boston University for law school. She represented refugees, farm workers, and tenants as a lawyer. After receiving a PhD in English at the University of Texas, she taught for a time at the University of Northern Colorado. But she likes teaching ESL best of all, because the students are so committed to mastering English. When Julie’s not at IRC, she’s writing materials for educational publishers, swimming, reading mysteries, and relaxing with her husband and son.
Summer is a teacher for evening classes at IRC. She graduated from UNC specializing in Spanish and ESL, and loves the unique interaction of languages and cultures that we get to experience in our classes and community of Northern Colorado. This is her first teaching job, and she hopes to teach abroad as well in her upcoming career. Summer loves new experiences and adventures, and is honored to have been offered this new experience in particular. Outside of teaching, she fulfills that adventurous spirit with riding her motorcycle, traveling, and enjoying the outdoor activities that Colorado has to offer.
Eva enjoys getting to work with and learn from the amazing people at IRCNoCo. She first worked with international students learning English during her undergraduate years. She earned her BA in Global Health from ASU and then moved to India to teach English to middle schoolers. She returned to the United States and is working on her Masters in Public Health at the Colorado School of Public Health at UNC. "Getting to work with the amazing students at IRC has been such a joy!" When not studying or working, she loves spending time with her family, hiking in the mountains, making new friends, and trying new ice cream.
As a child I spent several years living in England and the Philippines. I grew up surrounded by different ethnicities and cultures which planted the seed of love and curiosity for people different from me that would eventually bloom into becoming an ESL teacher. I graduated from Stephen F. Austin State University in Texas in 1995 with my B.S in Human Sciences and worked on to work in the Interior Design field. Later, I stayed home to raise my 3 children for many years. Five years ago I started volunteer teaching ESL classes in Saint Paul, MN and became hooked immediately. Because I have an insatiable appetite for learning and wanted to become the best teacher possible for my students, I went back to school to earn my Adult ESL Certificate from Hamline University in Saint Paul, MN. My goal as an ESL teacher is to empower my students to thrive in their communities. I want to show them I am their advocate, friend, and teacher. I try to create a fun, relaxed classroom environment where the students know they are safe and can let their guard down. In my spare time I love to read and volunteer as well as spend time with my husband and kids traveling, hiking, playing games and laughing.
Mary loves teaching at the IRC! She loves learning, laughing, and growing with her students while teaching them English. She earned her bachelors in Spanish, English as a Second Language, and Bilingual Education from right here in Greeley at the University of Northern Colorado. She taught high school ESL for 5 years and loved working with newcomer students. She is currently studying to get her master’s degree in Students Affairs and Higher Education Leadership at UNC. In her spare time, you can find her dancing, doing anything crafty, travelling, and baking. She is so thankfulfor the opportunity to work in this incredible place with so many incredible people!