Get to Know Our Instructors
Doorway to College Foundation's ACT and SAT test-prep instructors are the best in the industry. They are engaging educators who specialize in standardized testing - they know the ins and outs of test-taking strategies and how to go beyond test curriculum to really improve test scores. Our experts are scattered across the United States to serve every district across the country. Get to know just a few of them here!
Diana Anderson, Joined Doorway to College in 2001
Her Mission: “To provide SAT and ACT college test prep that has awesome results!” A dynamic, high-energy coach and communicator, Diana enjoys encouraging students to learn and apply strategies that enable them to do their very best on important academic tests. She can help you build study skills that will lead to a successful education and a lifelong career.
Dr. Iris Olige, Joined Doorway to College in 2017
Her Mission: “I’ve seen the affect that ACT scores have on a student’s ability to move into college. This is a different type and style of test prep. I help students with test-taking strategies that are beneficial to those who know or may not remember subject-specific content. I see the results and benefits of Doorway to College and believe in their seminars because they work.” Working in secondary education for decades, Iris has served as a math teacher for 13 years at Pearl-Cohn Entertainment Magnet High School in Nashville, assistant principal for seven years at Whites Creek High School in Whites Creek, TN, and the interim executive principal at Haynes Middle School in Nashville. She’s currently the associate principal at the Nashville School of the Arts.
Evora Baker, Joined Doorway to College in 2019
Her mission: “I like to be on the ground, creating change and inspiring others to do the same. I want to make a difference in the lives of students by helping them gain skills they can use in all aspects of their lives. I’m passionate about helping low-income students, first-generation students, students with disabilities, and other underserved populations gain access to higher education.” Spending most of her life as an education professional, Evora began her career working for a program that provided care to children of teen mothers who wanted to earn high school diplomas. Currently, she works in higher education as an assistant director of the TRiO Upward Bound program at Shepherd University. In addition to serving as an instructor, she’s seen positive results by encouraging students to participate in ZAPS seminars. “One of my students faced the possibility of not being able to attend a four-year institution because scores were not high enough. After attending the ZAPS workshop, however, the student gained admittance into a four-year institution and is doing fine. Another student needed a higher score to be considered for a scholarship. After attending a ZAPS seminar, he raised his ACT score enough to earn one.”
Brian Crouch, Joined Doorway to College in 2009
His mission: “I know all the right test-taking strategies and methods that work best to tame test anxiety, eliminate wrong answers, and manage time wisely – and I want to help students learn them, too.” Brian excels as one of our premier large group instructors and blends his energy and experience with every group. He’s Illinois native and graduate of Northern Illinois University. He joined Doorway to College Foundation after graduation and has taught more than 400 of our ZAPS seminars.
Jessica McTier, Joined Doorway to College in 2019
Her mission: “As a recent college graduate, I’m more than familiar with the college-readiness process, from taking standardized tests to submitting college applications. I know firsthand how frustrating the SAT and ACT can be; however, I believe that Doorway to College Foundation alleviates the stress that comes with applying for college by providing strategies to help students achieve their goals. I’m excited to help students take the next step in their college-preparation cycle!” Jessica works with Cigna Medicare in the Nashville area. During her undergraduate years at The University of Alabama, she worked directly with students to help them organize their notes, create study guides, foster healthy study habits, and improve grades through a plethora of tutoring and mentoring mechanisms. She is a recent graduate of The University of Alabama, where she studied mathematics and healthcare analytics and graduated with a 4.0 grade point average.
Dr. Myra Taylor, Joined Doorway to College in 2016
Her mission: “I want to be a part of a system that can effect change and produce favorable results. Doorway to College teaches skills that make the ACT more equitable and accessible to all students, generating hope and changing lives.” Myra completed her undergraduate studies at Virginia Commonwealth University, where she received her BA in English with a concentration in writing and rhetoric. She earned master’s degrees in English at Virginia Commonwealth University and educational administration and supervision at Tennessee State University. After seven years of teaching in middle schools, she began teaching high school and AP English at Pearl-Cohn High School in Nashville, TN. Four years later, she became the Ninth-Grade Academy Principal at Hillsboro High School. She has also served as an assistant principal at Whites Creek High School, East Nashville Magnet High School, and Madison Middle School. Through her leadership, she established and sustained programs in two states that transformed the educational experience for suburban and urban middle and high school students.
Katie Schrader, Joined Doorway to College in 2019
Her mission: “I joined Doorway to College Foundation as a way to connect with my community as a leader and provide service to others. It allows me to continue to meet young people and serve as a mentor for rising junior and senior students who have the goal of continuing their educational career at a college or university.” Katie is a career advisor with the Career Development Center at Oberlin College, where she coaches students, develops programming, and connects with industry partners with the goal of finding internships, co-ops, research experiences, and full-time employment for Oberlin students and alumni. She earned her bachelor’s in human ecology from The Ohio State University, her master’s in higher education administration from Northeastern University, and her second master’s in curriculum and instruction from the University of Akron.
Wanda Martinez, Joined Doorway to College in 2015
Her mission: “I believe that teachers must work hard to make children better students in the classroom and productive citizens in the community by providing updated, current, and timely information that will have a positive impact on their lives in the future. I’m glad to help provide this through Doorway to College.” Wanda is a retired sixth-grade science and language arts teacher in Iowa’s Waterloo Community Schools District. During her 28 years, she mentored new teachers and served as a cooperating teacher to numerous student teachers and field experience students.
Joe Carney, Joined Doorway to College in 2016
His mission: “I’m excited to help students do the best they can on standardized tests so they can meet their academic and professional goals!” Joe is a technology integration coach at Cedar Falls Community Schools in Cedar Falls, IA. His education includes undergraduate degrees from Upper Iowa University in public administration and elementary education, along with a master’s degree from the University of Northern Iowa in educational leadership. He taught sixth grade for seven years and has been a coach in the district for the past four years, working at multiple elementary schools.
Gary Hirsch, Joined Doorway to College in 2006
His mission: “I really believe we make a difference – and I want to help as many students experience that ‘difference’ as possible. When I was asked to teach for Doorway to College after I retired from Bettendorf in 2006, I accepted immediately.” Gary knows all the right test-taking strategies and methods that work best to tame test anxiety, eliminate wrong answers, and manage time wisely.