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  • Susan Wise Bauer
    Susan Wise Bauer Owner & Founder

    Susan is a writer, teacher, and historian. Her books include Rethinking School: How to Take Charge of Your Child’s Education, The Story of Western Science: From the Writings of Aristotle to the Big Bang Theory, The Well-Educated Mind: A Guide to the Classical Education You Never Had and The Well-Trained Mind: A Guide to Classical Education at Home, all published by W. W. Norton.

    Susan is also the owner and editor in chief of the Well-Trained Mind Press, a small press publishing history and language arts resources for K-12 student, and the founder of The Well-Trained Mind Academy. She has a Ph.D. in the history of American religion from the College of William & Mary in Virginia, as well as an M.A. in seventeenth-century literature and a Master of Divinity in Ancient Near Eastern Languages and Literature. For fifteen years, she taught literature and composition at the College of William and Mary.

    She now writes and raises sheep on the family farm in Charles City, Virginia, which is also the home base for her husband and her four semi-adult children, as well as four dogs, three cats, nine ducks, five Angora goats, three horses, a donkey, and a variable number of chickens.

    • Julia Kaziewicz Collier
      Julia Kaziewicz Collier Dean

      I am thrilled to be working as part of the Well Trained Mind Academy team! I’ve been a part of the Well-Trained Mind Press (WTMP) family since 2010, writing curriculum and working with the WTMP on various publishing projects. I have three study and teaching guides out with the WTMP – The History of the Renaissance World, The History of the Medieval World, and The History of the Ancient World.

      I have my doctorate in American Studies from the College of William & Mary, and I earned my BA and MA at New York University, concentrating on English and American Literature, Creative Writing and Art History. I’ve held teaching positions at Virginia Commonwealth University, the College of William & Mary, Christopher Newport University, and Thomas Nelson Community College, teaching everything from English 101 to Contemporary American Youth Film.

      While at the College of William and Mary I was recognized for “Excellence in Undergraduate Mentoring” and I am excited to bring my passion for high-quality teaching and mentorship to the WTMA. It is my goal to maintain the highest standards of education at the WTMA while making communication between students, parents, and instructors seamless. I look forward to working together with you to create the best educational environment for your student!

      • Steve Otto
        Steve Otto Headmaster

        Steve, a graduate of The United States Air Force Academy, has over 20 years of leadership development, strategic planning, financial management, and business development experience across government, for-profit, and non-profit sectors. He now enjoys the opportunity to provide support and educational alternatives to families through the WTM Academy, so that they can continue to pursue the best academic options for each student in their family.

        Steve and his wife live in the Williamsburg, Virginia area with their three children. Their family initially began home schooling in order to accommodate an unpredictable work schedule, but quickly grew to appreciate the daily opportunities to instill values in their children, increase the quality of their education, and to enjoy more experiences as a family.

        • Elizabeth Weber Edwards
          Elizabeth Weber Edwards Foreign Language Chair

          View my teaching sample.

          With a Swiss mother and a German-American father, I didn’t have much choice about living between three cultures. Summers spent visiting my grandparents, uncle, and extended family in the Swiss Alps and German countryside sparked my interest in German literature, hiking, and chocolate.

          I graduated summa cum laude from the College of William and Mary in Virginia, where I majored in English and German. A junior year abroad in Germany at the Westfälische Wilhelms-Universität Münster sparked my interest in Comparative Literature, where I participated in seminars on German translations of Shakespeare’s sonnets, literature and painting, and early American writing. The unique perspective available to me as the only native English speaker in the German college classroom, where I got to share with and learn from my colleagues, got me excited about cultural and literary exchange. While pursuing my doctorate at Vanderbilt University (2012), I had the opportunity to study literature, translation, and theology at the Freie Universität Berlin in Germany.

          Most recently, I’ve worked as the Associate Director for Graduate Student Development at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. There, I helped graduate students to improve their teaching in the classroom, consulted on grant and fellowship applications, wrote a blog on career and professional development, and had the privilege of working with the McNair Scholars as an academic support specialist. In this capacity, I helped Scholars with planning and writing research papers. I also worked with exceptional graduate students who were applying for fellowships and grant funding, helping them refine personal statements and hone their messages.

          I am soon to return to Virginia with my husband and son (my very favorite Nebraskan), where we plan to enjoy the beautiful countryside, good food, great art, and wonderful friends.

          On teaching: In my foreign language classroom, language is a tool students use to navigate meaning and encounter new ideas. I provide an input-rich environment, where students are immersed in the language through videos, song, text, and stories. Through these different sources, students see language as it’s used in daily context. From there, they grow their vocabulary and grammatical abilities, and gain confidence communicating about an ever-growing range of topics and ideas.

          In my writing courses, short lectures introduce themes, vocabulary, and grammar. Students then gain confidence constructing their own sentences sharing them with the class, building the skills they need to talk about their world and encounter new ones. All students must be active participants–there’s no other way to learn language than to make it your own!

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