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UW Youth & Teen Programs

Meet the Instructors

Olivia Bishop

Olivia Bishop

Olivia Bishop recently graduated from the University of Washington with a degree in political science and philosophy. While she was an undergraduate, she was a competitor on the UW Mock Trial team. Currently, Oliva is a legal assistant and debate coach for elementary school students. She hopes to attend law school in the near future. Olivia is excited to share her love of law, competition and mock trial with students and to work alongside them in cultivating their skills related related to those topics. 

Teaches: Inside the Courthouse


Caleb Burke

Caleb Burke

Caleb Burke is a programmer analyst at Boeing. He’s worked in Java for the past five years and has taught Java courses for UW Professional & Continuing Education. Before learning Java, he used other languages such as C programming for embedded systems and JavaScript. Caleb recently completed a master’s degree in electrical engineering through the University of Washington Bothell.

Teaches: Coding in Java I and Coding in Java II 


Cassia Cai

Cassia Cai

Cassia Cai is pursing her doctorate in physical oceanography in the School of Oceanography at the UW, where she studies sea surface temperature variability in climate models. She received her master’s degree in applied mathematics from the UW and her bachelor’s degree in earth and planetary sciences from Northwestern University, where she had the opportunity to work with high schoolers to prepare them to compete in the Regional Science Bowl. She found that experience rewarding and is excited to work with high schoolers again. 

Teaches: Introduction to Math Modeling  


Lisa Carlson

Lisa Carlson

Lisa Carlson is a database administrator and a data visualization specialist for nonprofits. She's worked with data for years and teaches data visualization courses with UW Professional & Continuing Education. Lisa fervently advocates for using data to shape informed decisions and narratives. Building on a solid educational foundation, including a bachelor’s degree in Biblical literature from Northwest University and specialized certifications, she is currently working on a master's degree in information management at the UW. 

Teaches: Introduction to Data Visualization 


Caitlin Chamberlin

Caitlin ChamberlainCaitlin Chamberlin earned a master of education with a science concentration from the University of Washington. She currently develops and teaches STEM courses for UW Youth and Teen Programs after teaching for many years at Bertschi School in Seattle. Caitlin was awarded a National Science Foundation teacher researcher position through the UW's Molecular Engineering and Materials Center, where she conducted research and collaborated with campus scientists on NanoCamp! curriculum. She also received a 2023 Teaching Excellence Award, presented by UW Continuum College. Caitlin loves learning from her students and inspiring them to be curious about their world.  

Teaches: NanoCamp! and STEAM Innovation Lab


Jennifer Cuffman

Jennifer Cuffman

Jennifer Cuffman received her doctorate in English literature from the University of Washington. During her time at the UW, Jennifer taught a variety of writing classes in the Expository Writing Program, and she loves helping her students feel more comfortable and confident as writers. 

Teaches: Sharpen Your Writing Skills, Writers Workshop for High School (spring) and Writing Arguments That Matter


Hannah Dahleen

Hannah Dahleen

Hannah Dahleen is a recent University of Washington graduate with a degree in English and political science. During her time as an undergraduate student, she served as the president of the UW Mock Trial team and won awards at the national level for her performance as an attorney. Currently, she works in the legal field and volunteers as an assistant coach for the collegiate Mock Trial team. She hopes to attend law school in the future. She's tutored students of all ages in various subjects and is passionate about writing, teaching and advocacy. Hannah is looking forward to returning as an instructor for YTP this summer.

Teaches: Inside the Courthouse


Meganne DesRosier

Meganne DesRosier

Meganne DesRosier graduated from Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo with a bachelor's degree in architecture and a minor in sustainable environments. Her studies in Copenhagen during her fourth year shaped her design approach, which has a specific focus on adaptive reuse and people-centricity. Her portfolio includes a range of civic, arts and cultural, residential, winery, art installation and graphic design projects.

Teaches: Architectural Studies and Introduction to Architecture


Matt Fujimoto

Matt Fujimoto

Matt Fujimoto is a graduate of the University of Washington's Department of Architecture. Matt's work is influenced by their travel experiences and passion for music. Matt has a rich portfolio that includes urban design; the design of workplace and commercial spaces, affordable housing, performance spaces, multifamily and single-family residential structures and art installations; and the use of innovative construction methods. 

Teaches: Architectural Studies  


Jessica Holmes

Jessica Holmes

Jessica Holmes teaches English and writing at Eastern Oregon University. She has taught college-level classes in composition and rhetoric, modern and contemporary literature, creative writing, interdisciplinary writing, science writing, environmental humanities, women’s studies and public scholarship. She holds a doctorate in English language and literature from the UW.

Teaches: Writing for College Readiness


Steve Howard

Steve Howard

Steve Howard is a middle school STEM teacher in the Edmonds School District. His work focuses on engineering and design-build projects. Steve takes a hands-on approach to promote technical skills in youth, including CAD modeling; coding; robotics; 3D and laser printing; and using shop tools to build confidence, creativity and career-connected learning.

Teaches: 3D Design & CAD Modeling, 3D Design & CAD Modeling for KidsEngineering Challenges, Engineering Challenges for Kids, Exploring Microbiology and Exploring Microbiology for Kids


Angela Kelley

Angela Kelley

Angela Kelley has been a professional actor for more than 30 years and has worked with youth in theater in many capacities, from Missoula Children's Theatre to Studio East and Seattle Children's Theatre. She’s especially proud of her involvement with Newport Heights Elementary School in Bellevue, where she’s directed large-scale theatrical productions for almost 20 years.

Teaches: Musical Theater for Middle School


Terence Kelley

Terence Kelley

Terence Kelley has been a professional actor and teacher for more than 30 years. He has toured nationally with the Missoula Children's Theatre, where he played such roles as Oz the Great and Powerful in The Wizard of Oz. At Seattle Children's Theatre, he played Aslan the Lion in The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe. He codirects the theater program at Newport Heights Elementary School with Angela Kelley.

Teaches: Musical Theater for Kids, Musical Theater for Middle School and Young Actors Workshop


Cole Kopca

Cole Kopca

Cole Kopca is the assistant director of the Pacific Northwest Transportation Consortium and a doctoral student in the Smart Transportation Applications & Research Lab at the University of Washington. His research focuses on the interplay between new and emerging mobility services and more classical modes of transportation. Cole received his bachelor’s degree in civil engineering from the University of Iowa and a master’s degree in urban planning from the UW.

Teaches: Introduction to Autonomous Cars


Dora Lanier

Dora Lanier

Dora Lanier was recently named 2024 playwright in residence for Hypatia in the Woods to work on her new play Erasing Ophelia. Her plays include 7,433 Days of Silence, Portrait of Women at War, She Wants, Wife-Mother-Friend and Pioneer Women of the Northwest. For various utilities in the Puget Sound region, she’s written/co-written Detective SafetySmarts Explores Electrical Safety, Rhoda and the Grumpy Trash Can, Wanda Flipplefairy Finds Water, Protecting “R” Planet, Going Green Together, The 4R’s Challenge and Planet Protector Adventures! Since earning her MFA from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, Lanier has appeared on stage and screen, most recently as Horvath in Enemy of the People on a Minnesota tour for Sod House Theater and the campus safety officer for the horror feature film 213 Bones. Her favorite roles include Mistress Quickly in Henry V, Rita in Educating Rita and Pam the Bingo Queen.

Teaches: Musical Theater for Kids, Playwriting Workshop for Kids,   Playwriting Workshop for Middle School and Young Actors Workshop


Erik Ma

Erik Ma

Erik Ma is a student at the University of California, Berkeley and is studying electrical engineering and computer science. He has extensive robotics experience, teaching various courses and mentoring students and robotics teams from all over the world.

Teaches: Introduction to Autonomous Cars


Lisa Muschinski

Lisa Muschinski

Lisa Muschinski received their bachelor's degree at the University of Colorado Boulder and teaches English at IvyGoal, a tutoring company accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges. Lisa is a winner of CU’s Thompson Writing Award and is published in SmokeLong Quarterly, HAD and elsewhere. They are excited to help students develop their voice and become more confident in their writing.

Teaches: Mechanics of Writing Workshop and Writers Workshop for Middle School 


Julie Olsen  

Julie OlsenJulie Olsen is a Washington state certified K–12 drama and English language arts instructor and teaching artist. She currently teaches theater skills and directs the drama program at Assumption-St. Bridget School in Seattle. Julie has taught at the Veladare School, the Washington Academy of Performing Arts Conservatory High School and Roosevelt High School. An executive board member of Washington state’s Educational Theatre Association, Julie chairs the Washington State Junior Thespian Conference. She has a Master of Fine Arts from the UW School of Drama and a master's in teaching from Seattle Pacific University. 

Teaches: Young Writers Workshop


Ray Pfortner

Ray Pfortner

Ray Pfortner loves photography and teaching, especially to teens. He's been doing both for over 20 years in New York City, California and Seattle. Ray is an instructor for the UW’s Certificate in Photography and Bellevue College’s Digital Photography Certificate Program. He’s worked in photography as an educator, stock agent, editor, consultant and photographer. Ray has a bachelor's in biology from Yale and a master's in environmental management from Duke. He’s been a fellow of the North American Nature Photography Association since 2003. His photography is represented by Getty Images.

Teaches: Digital Photography: Camera, Composition & Beyond, Wild About Photography and Photography Exploration


Brad Shigenaka

Brad Shigenaka

Brad Shigenaka is a Career and Technical Education-certified STEM teacher with Seattle Public Schools, where he has also served as a science teacher and curriculum specialist. He has a bachelor's degree in chemistry and a master's degree in teaching from the University of Washington.

Teaches: Introduction to Game Design


Jack Straub

Jack Straub

Jack Straub spent more than 35 years as a software developer and engineer in the computer industry, where he focused on system-level implementations using a variety of languages and platforms. He also helped develop corporate coding standards in PL/I and C and authored textbooks on several programming languages, including C. Jack has been honored for teaching excellence by UW Professional & Continuing Education.

Teaches: Coding in Java I and Coding in Java II


Glen Tokola

Glen Tokola

Glen Tokola is an esports professional with nine years of industry experience specializing in editorial management and content strategy. He works as the University of Washington’s esports manager. Previously he supported major productions and content-driven partnership campaigns between tier 1 esports organizations, game studios and streaming platforms. Glen is passionate about Destiny 2, card games and developing the next generation of esports leaders. 

Teaches: Esports, Gaming & Broadcasting


Sabet Vallejo

Sabet Vallejo

Sabet Vallejo has been an engineer for more than 30 years and a technology instructor for 20 years. She’s excited about the power of engineering to create simple solutions to complex problems. During her career, she’s solved many engineering problems through the use of software development tools. Sabet earned a master’s in engineering construction from the University of Washington.

Teaches: Algorithmic Thinking: Programming Logic Fundamentals


Wei-Chih Wang

Wei-Chih Wang

Wei-Chih Wang is an affiliated associate professor in the UW Department of Mechanical Engineering and Department of Electrical & Computer Engineering. His principal research is in the area of optical MEMS, fiber-optic sensors, and advance materials and structure study. Wei-Chih is passionate about engaging youth in STEM-related learning. He encourages students to engage with the materials directly because he believes that students learn about technology far more effectively through hands-on experiences than from absorbing it only from textbooks and theory.

Teaches: Introduction to Engineering Design & Process