ELC FACULTY

staff_300PIXOur multi-lingual faculty and administrative staff work as a team, bringing a wealth of knowledge, experience, and training to the ELC and its students. Our faculty is also highly credentialed. All hold undergraduate degrees in English or closely related fields, and many hold one or more graduate degrees in their respective disciplines. A number of our faculty serve as professors at nearby universities. The ELC’s administrative staff includes: a SEVIS Specialist, Student Services Coordinator, Technology Assistant, and Student Advisors, who are ready and available to help learners meet the unique challenges that come with international schooling.

jimwithhatJames Stewart, Owner and President of the English Language Center, has been a passionate educator and supporter of international schooling for over forty years. He incorporated Twashakarris, Inc., DBA English Language Center, in 1982 and has since served as the institution’s CEO. Jim holds a Master of Arts degree in English from Kansas State University and completed coursework toward a PhD. in English at the University of Oklahoma. While his professional expertise lies in the field of Linguistics, Jim’s penchant for great literary humor fuels his leisure and professional writing. He began teaching English at Northeastern State College in Tahlequah, Oklahoma after completing his Master’s in English and went on to serve as an English professor, at the University of Central Oklahoma (UCO), for over twenty years. Jim retired from UCO in 1988, having earned the prestigious distinction of Professor Emeritus. His leadership, vision, and commitment to the ELC continue to inspire our service, both to our students and to the broader international community.
jaimeJaime WattsDirector, has been the Vice President of the English Language Center since its inception in 1982.  Jaime is a third generation educator with over ten (10) years of teaching experience who has taught at both the University of Central Oklahoma and Oklahoma City University.  She has been actively involved with ELC for the past three decades and is passionate about ELC continuing to provide quality ESL education to all ELC learners.  Jaime graduated summa cum laude from Oklahoma City University and holds a Juris Doctorate (J.D.) from the University of Oklahoma.  In addition to a legal and a teaching background, Jaime brings with her professional experience in the strategic management of businesses and in human resource management. She holds the following professional certifications:  Senior Professional in Human Resources Management (SPHR), Certification in Compensation and Benefits from Cornell University and Professional Certification from the International Pubic Management for Human Resources Association (IPMA-CP). 
travis-2-150Travis Adams, Instructor, studied at Oklahoma State University where he earned Bachelor’s degrees in both Spanish and Finance. His international ESL teaching experience includes serving the Lorena Ochoa Foundation as an ESL educator in Guadalajara, Mexico and teaching English in Quito, Ecuador at both Colegio Córdova and Worldwide Connections Language Institute. Travis is fluent in Spanish and is a certified TESOL instructor. Among his teaching specialties are English grammar and IELTS/TOEFL Preparation. Travis joined the ELC faculty in August 2011.
amandaAmanda JordanAdministrative Assistant, holds a Bachelor of Arts in Asian Studies/Music with a Minor in Chinese from Oklahoma City University and a Master of Arts in TESOL from the University of Canberra in Australia.  Upon completion of her Masters, Amanda spent three more years as an ESL teacher to international students before moving to China in 2007. During her five years in China, Amanda was a full-time student and worked as an ESL university teacher and IELTS examiner.  Amanda has lived in three different countries and has extensive experience living, interacting, and communicating cross-culturally. Amanda brings with her a rich resource of knowledge and experience. Amanda joined the ELC staff in 2014.
David-e1339722366740-150x150David Ferrari, Instructor, holds a Bachelor’s degree in English from Drew University, Madison, New Jersey, and Master’s degree in English, specializing in Composition and Rhetoric, from the University of Central Oklahoma. He currently teaches English composition to both international students and Americans at the University of Central Oklahoma, as well as English Composition, Remedial English, and Humanities at Rose State College. David has been an active member of Oklahoma Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages (OKTESOL) and served as Chair of Higher Education for that organization from November 2002 to November 2003. David also worked in the mental health community for twenty years prior to his teaching career. He has been teaching at ELC since September 1999.
quentinQuentin Pratt, Operations Assistant, Technology Specialist, and DSO, holds Bachelor’s degrees in English and Philosophy from the University of Central Oklahoma (UCO) and has completed a year of law school at the University of Tulsa. As an undergraduate, he served as an editor for the New Plains Review, a literary journal published by UCO. In addition to his work with international students at the ELC, he has also taught English to adult second language learners at Raindrop Turkish House, in Oklahoma City. Quentin has served on the ELC faculty since 2008. He became a TESOL Member in 2014. He completed SEVP certification in March of 2014. He has a certificate in TEFL from BridgeTEFL.
calebCaleb Kirby, Instructor, studied at Oklahoma State University where he earned a Bachelor’s degree in International Business. His teaching experience includes having taught 5th grade at Yantai American School and English to university students at the Shandong Institute of Business and Technology in Yantai, China. He is proficient in Mandarin Chinese and is CELTA certified. After spending four years in China, Caleb returned to his home state of Oklahoma in July 2013 and joined the ELC faculty.
sarah150Sarah McElyea, Instructor, holds a bachelor’s in history from Notre Dame of Maryland University. She earned her Certificate in English Language Teaching to Adults (CELTA) from Cambridge ESOL in 2013. Driven by her love for international history and culture, she has taught and traveled throughout Southeast Asia. She spent three years living and teaching in China before returning to the U.S. to pursue further education and professional development. Sarah enjoys spending each day in her classroom learning about the cultures and experiences of her students as she prepares them for their future university studies. She is currently earning her master’s in English/TESL from the University of Central Oklahoma.
aprilHuiyang “April” Gao, instructor, graduated with honors from the University of Central Oklahoma with a Master of Education in Bilingual Education/Teaching English as a Second Language. She also holds a Bachelor of Arts in English Language and Literature from Shanxi Normal University, Shanxi, China. She is fluent in English and Mandarin. While in China, she had 4 years’ English teaching experience in university. Prior to her joining the ELC, she also taught ESL/EFL students in Oklahoma for over 2 years. April is certified to teach English, Chinese, and ESL, but she enjoys working with ESL/EFL students the most because it allows her to use her passion, knowledge, and empathy at the same time in teaching culturally diverse students. She joined the ELC in April 2013.
jeannetteJeanette Jones, Instructor, holds a Master’s degree in Bilingual Education / TESOL from the University of Oklahoma.  She also graduated from Oklahoma Christian University with a Bachelor’s degree in Religious Education and a Minor in Missions.  For the past 4 years, she has taught intensive, academic English as a second language at The Center for Applied Studies in English out of Southern Nazarene University.  Having spent many years serving in missions throughout Mexico, she speaks Spanish and has additionally studied Kοινή Greek and Latin.  While she is originally from Wichita Falls, TX, she and her husband plan to stay in Edmond, OK for as long as they can.  She joined the ELC faculty in July, 2013. 
chrisChris Watts, Administrative Assistant/Special Projects Coordinator, holds a Bachelor’s degree in Geography from Northeastern Oklahoma State University. Chris is a professional buyer, offering eight years experience in purchasing in the bio-tech and food manufacturing industries. He also worked at the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center as a lab manager for Dr. William Hildebrand in the Biomedical Research Center, assisting with NIH grants, preparing monthly budget analysis and reports for nine funding sources, management of grant funds and fee for service contracts, IRB and IACUC file management and clinical accreditation upkeep. He has experience in training and supervising employees at a law office in which he was responsible for developing and maintaining documented systems and procedures. He joined ELC in May of 2013. He became a TESOL Member in 2014.

Davis Keck 150Davis Keck
Administrative Assistant, holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts in English with an emphasis in Creative Writing from Oklahoma State University  (OSU) from which he graduated summa cum laude.  He also holds a TESOL certificate from OSU.  He has taught English as a second language at the Zhejiang Institute of Mechanical and Electrical Engineering in Hangzhou, China.  While at the Institute, he also taught courses in Western Culture.  Additionally, Davis has taught English as a second language for the Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation to international post-doctoral scientists.  He has used his creative writing skills by working both as a Creative Writer and as a Senior Editor for Tate Publishing in Mustang, Oklahoma. Davis joined the ELC staff in October of 2014.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAJacob Whitney, Administrative Assistant, holds Bachelor’s degrees in Economics and Criminology from the University of Florida from which he graduated summa cum laude.   He grew up in Jacksonville, Florida, but now calls Oklahoma home.   His first international experience came when he worked on a university project in Sarajevo, Bosnia in the summer of 2009.  Jacob spent two years teaching English as a second language and performing market research for a company based in Amman, Jordan.  This job afforded him the opportunity to spend significant time in Egypt and Tunisia and to learn some Arabic throughout the process.  Jacob joined the ELC staff in December 2014.

 

 

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