Rainbow Tutoring believes in inspiring students to grow through education. We give students the gift of working one-on-one with educators that come from a place of breadth, humor and compassion. Each educator has a wealth of knowledge, experience and intuition that he or she draws from when it comes to working with young adults and enabling them to make connections between what they are learning and what matters to them in the long run.


Meet our top tier Educators:

Gloria Yi

Gloria graduated from Harvard University where she studied Human Evolutionary Biology. She has helped numerous students reach their full academic potential by providing SAT preparation (7+ years of coaching including many National Merit Finalists), guidance in the college application process, and general academic tutoring. Gloria herself received a 2360 (two perfect 800’s) on her SATs and was the valedictorian of her graduating class.  She has also helped many students write award-winning essays and served as an invaluable thesis project advisor to many undergraduate and graduate level students.  Gloria greatly looks forward to continuing to teach and mentor bright young minds.


Michael Directo

Michael received his B.S. in Biological Sciences and B.A. in Political Science from the University of Southern California, and is currently a MD/MBA dual degree graduate student at USC’s Keck School of Medicine and Marshall School of Business. He received a perfect 1600 on the old SAT and has helped many of our students excel on the SAT as well as other standardized tests. Michael also works as an associate admissions director in both the undergraduate and medical school programs at USC.


Sascha Alexander 

Sascha graduated Magna Cum Laude from USC with a B.A. in Theater and a Minor in Humanities. Thanks to her high SAT scores she was invited to participate in an interdisciplinary honors core at USC called Thematic Option, and studied with some of the most sought-after professors on campus in Political Science, Neurobiology, International Relations, and Comparative Literature. Now Sascha works as a professional actress and writer in LA, and is thrilled to have the opportunity to tutor because nothing excites her more than an individual on the edge of growth and change! She looks forward to helping her students discover their confidence and leverage their assets to meet their academic goals.


Dawn Forman

Dawn studied the French language while living in the United States, and continued to expand her knowledge of this language while living in Marseille, France for 8 years. French is her passion. She has taught French to children, teens and adults and from novice level to almost fluent.  For beginners, she uses a practical approach in her teaching, drawing from daily life, piecing together the necessary verbs, nouns and adjectives in order to get students speaking sentences quickly to keep them motivated. When tutoring those who already have some fluency, she includes culture, media, and her real life experiences from France to reinforce what has been learned. She is thrilled to see students put the pieces together and learn to converse in this beautiful language.


Kurt Schwengel

Kurt has been teaching Kindergarten at Franklin Elementary since 1996 and insists that he “isn’t going anywhere cause Kindergarten is where all the fun is!” Kurt is an NBC Crystal Apple Award winning teacher and travels the country presenting his original Kindergarten curriculum entitled “Rock and Roll Kindergarten”. Kurt was born and raised in Santa Monica attending Madison Elementary, John Adams Middle School, Samohi and then went on to play baseball for UCLA. He then received both a Masters Degree in Education and an MBA from Pepperdine University in 1995. Kurt’s passion for Kindergarten certainly stirred up some old memories. For a peek into his classroom go to www.rockandrollkindergarten.com

You can also watch his inspiring TedTalk on YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5ye78F4Mnbk

“After teaching for 18 years I have found my greatest strength in the classroom to be my ability to hide the learning from the kids deep within all inclusive thematic units”


Anna Lisa McClelland

Writer, actress, comedian Anna Lisa McClelland has had a passion for teaching since she was sixteen and taught English to Ethiopian children in a refugee camp in Israel. While attending Tufts University, Anna Lisa worked for a nonprofit organization based at Harvard University, writing curricula and teaching in classrooms throughout Boston. She has worked as a speechwriter for President Nikias, the president of USC, Queen Noor of Jordan, and other political figures. She has written and performed in plays in London, New York, and Los Angeles. Anna Lisa recently completed her first novel, while earning her master’s degree in fiction at USC. She has been developing a comedic television show based on her book and hit off-Broadway one-woman show. She is excited to return to USC in the fall for an MFA in Writing for Screen and Television at the School of Cinematic Arts. All the while, she continues to mentor, tutor, and teach writing.


Maura Mannle

Maura received a B.S. in Animal Science and Pre-Veterinary Medicine from the University of Rhode Island, where she was also a teacher’s assistant for 4 years; proctoring exams and leading laboratory lessons. She tutors math, science and humanities with equal ease and prides herself in being a passionate and creative educator. Maura has always enjoyed teaching. Starting at a young age, she trained her siblings and peers in academics and in athletics, and later taught horseback riding to special needs children. She also graduated from the American Conservatory Theater in San Francisco and the Second City Improv Theater in Hollywood. In her spare time, Maura loves exercising, playing with animals and volunteering with the Screen Actor Guild’s, “Books Pals” where she works with children of all ages, helping them create and perform original monologues.


Mariah Bess

Mariah graduated cum laude from Barnard College, Columbia University, where she earned her bachelor’s degree in English.  Mariah worked as a tutor through the Office of Disability Services during her time at college.  In successfully navigating her own academically rigorous journey as an ADD/LD student, Mariah learned that traditional study practices are not for everyone.  As a result of her own experience, she is able to adapt to the educational needs of individual students and suggest helpful strategies for academic organization and success.  Mariah’s keen intuition and desire to understand the inner-workings of her students’ minds make her a sensitive and flexible mentor to people of all learning styles.  Mariah preps students for various standardized tests, and also serves as a mentor in the private school and college application process.  Mariah’s areas of expertise are English and writing.  Learning ignites at the intersection of the personal and the academic.  Exploring this space, her students begin to grow in meaningful and lasting ways.  Mariah is a jack-of-all-trades and also works as an actress, singer, editor, co-author, and organizational aid.


Shuo Zhang

Shuo Zhang graduated from MIT with a B.S. in Biology and a M.S. in Toxicology. She has worked at a startup pharmaceutical company, a cancer research lab, and a Fortune 500 financial services firm. In addition, she received the Special Jury’s prize at the Anemos International Music Competition as a violinist when she was sixteen. Shuo has always had a passion for teaching. She received her first teaching certificate while still in high school. Since then, she has taught all ages of students from kindergarteners to college grads. Shuo teaches a wide variety of subjects, including writing, humanities, math and science. She also loves helping students conquer the standardized tests. Through the years, she has learned to tailor her teaching methods to capitalize on each person’s unique learning style. She believes anyone can learn anything given the desire, time and creative instruction. She loves helping her students learn and achieve the goals they didn’t think possible. In addition to teaching, Shuo also works as a screenwriter and an actress.


Joe Stromberg

Joe received a Bachelor’s degree in Finance with a Chemistry concentration from the University of Kansas. Joe is one of those unusual individuals who genuinely enjoys numbers, and acquired a love of teaching while tutoring many of KU’s athletes in math and science. He is equally versed in humanities, English (including Shakespeare) and essay writing. His experience in college planning and SAT Prep (Math, Verbal and Essay) allows him to help alleviate some of the stress surrounding the dreaded college application process. Joe’s favorite part of tutoring is giving his students the confidence to establish and meet goals. He understands that every individual has his or her own unique way of learning, and he loves the mentoring process and helping students find and utilize their own strategies to achieve academic success.


Kristin Price

Kristin Price graduated from UC Irvine with a Bachelor’s of Science in Biological Sciences, as well as a Bachelor’s of Arts in Dance. Aside from two Bachelor Degrees, s few of Kristin’s other accomplishments consist of the completion of a certification program as a UCLA Emergency Medical Technician and work as an Emergency Department Scribe. A born multi-tasker, she worked in a private otolaryngology practice while taking on Basic Science Research at the Cardio-thoracic Surgery Lab at UCLA. Although she was accepted to UC Irvine School of Medicine, among other top medical schools and NICU programs in the country, she has deferred her acceptance to pursue her passion: the study of holistic medicine methodologies. She received her Registered Yoga Teacher certification from the Yoga Teacher Alliance, and loves teaching and taking yoga classes in her free time, when she’s not dancing or camping. She has been tutoring and mentoring high school and college students for upwards of seven years and more recently, expanded her horizons to include tutoring the ISEE and the ACT, and has had great success helping students with their admissions essays and applications to college or graduate school. She takes great pride in getting to know her students and ensuring their success.


Neela Easwar

Neela is currently a UCLA senior majoring in psychobiology, with aspirations of one day becoming a doctor. Neela has always been academically driven and goal oriented—in high school, she scored a 2270 on the SAT, took 9 AP classes and scored 5’s on all 9 AP tests, and graduated at the top of her class as the valedictorian. In college, she continued her trajectory of academic success, acing some of the most difficult classes at UCLA and scoring in the 98th percentile on the MCAT. Neela’s greatest passion is biology, and she has had the privilege of working in a prestigous lab alongside world renown researchers studying potential cures for ALS. Neela is also a self-proclaimed nerd who loves to learn, and she aims to instill this same love of learning in every student she works with. She understands that school is often anything but enjoyable, but every single subject can be incredibly fascinating when approached in the right way. Neela brings enthusiasm, humor, and excitement to her tutoring sessions, and she considers a session successful if she can make the student laugh at least once. Neela specializes in biology, psychology, academic and creative writing, reading comprehension, chemistry, Spanish, and SAT preparation.


Avriel Epps

A Los Angeles native, Avriel Epps graduated Summa Cum Laude with a B.A. in Communication Studies and a minor in Education Studies from UCLA. While on full academic scholarship, she was selected to be both a Ronald E. McNair Research Scholar and Wasserman Scholar. At UCLA, Avriel led a digital-communication-focused research lab, and has continued to work as a researcher in the Graduate School of Education and Information Studies’ lab, The CHOICES Project, which examines successful college counseling practices at California high schools. Her research has garnered numerous awards and honors, including an invitation from the U.S. Department of Education to present her work for congress in Washington D.C.. An artist-educator with a focus on the intersection of qualitative research methods, media, and educational equity, Avriel’s work has been featured in The New York Times, The Guardian, Vogue Magazine, Huffington Post, and Vice Magazine, among others. Through her unique and holistic approach to college admissions coaching, she has helped numerous undergraduate and graduate school applicants gain admissions to highly competitive universities such as Cornell, UC Berkley, and University of Chicago Booth School of Business. Avriel specializes in creative and academic writing, college admissions, financial aid, verbal SAT/ACT, performing and digital arts, humanities, and the social sciences.

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