Our students learn alongside passionate and dedicated educators from a wide variety of backgrounds. We are all educators: whether we have dedicated years of higher education to our disciplines, have lived on Eleuthera our entire life, or are conducting scientific research at the Cape Eleuthera Institute. Below is a list of the professionals working most closely with Island School semester students. 

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Ashley Waldorf
Director of The Island School

Ashley graduated from Michigan State University with degrees in Sociocultural Anthropology and Professional Writing and specializations in Peace and Justice Studies and Health and Wellness Promotion. In 2008, Ashley accepted a position as a Teach For America corps member and taught for three years in California, simultaneously pursuing a Master's degree in Education at Alliant International University. Looking to foster experiential learning methods, Ashley then spent one year working in outdoor education. In 2012, Ashley returned to TFA to work with the same community she initially taught, this time coaching teachers in pedagogy and practice.  Ashley has attended workshops in leadership, experiential education, positive psychology, and critical thinking. Ashley joined The Island School community in 2014 as a Histories and Literature teacher after finding the curriculum and program matched her education philosophy focused on holistic development, and in Fall of 2016, assumed the role of Director. In her spare time, Ashley enjoys running, backpacking, reading and adventuring outside.

 
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Liz Slingsby
Dean of Students

 

Liz arrived at The Cape Eleuthera Island School family in spring of 2013. She joined us as the Director of the Gap Year Program, which she led for three years. Liz also directed our Summer Term for two years and assumed the role as Dean of Students in fall 2016. Her transition to The Bahamas came after years of fostering a deep understanding of experiential education, she is still as passionate as the first time she assisted a student to see the best version of themselves nine years ago. Liz received her BSc in Physical Geography in the UK. She combined her love of the ocean and her passion for education by spending over two years teaching marine science at an experiential education facility in the Florida Keys. She transitioned to the ‘land-down-unda’ in 2012 – taking outdoor education to a new level in the Australian bush leading trips and working with students from all over Australia. Since being back where she belongs, where the ocean and land meet in a place she thoroughly believes in, she has been able to foster relationships with students, develop programming, and is working hard every day to deepen her understanding of what it means to live well in a place. This year, Liz will also be teaching our capstone leadership course, Seminar. In her spare time Liz finds herself hiking, being outdoors, hammocking, exploring the underwater world, traveling and spending time eating good food with friends that are family and family that are friends. 

 
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Bruce Macartney

Dean of Academics

Bruce has been an educator for 17 years.  He has spent most of his career working in and around the Grand Rapids area of Michigan teaching Science and Industrial Arts.  Bruce earned his Bachelor's degree in Biology at Central Michigan University in 2001, and a Master’s degree in Education from Ferris State University in 2004.  Bruce also holds teaching certifications in Chemistry, Industrial Arts as well as Construction Trades. Over the course of his career, he has enjoyed creating curricula specifically designed to connect student’s passions and needs with experiential place based learning.  His philosophy of teaching centers on the idea that

learning must be real, hands-on, relevant, and meaningful to students. Bruce believes that students experience success in education when their dreams and abilities are connected with their passions in a significant and meaningful way. In 2015 Bruce and his family moved to the jungle of Costa Rica to teach as well as immerse themselves in the rich culture and natural environment.  Throughout his career, he had been fortunate enough to work with different cultures and students in rural, suburban, inner city and jungle settings. In his free time, Bruce enjoys freediving, SCUBA, woodworking, and spending time experiencing new adventures with his wife and three children.

 

 
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Alex Cook
Teaching Fellowship Program Coordinator

Alex hails from Lancaster, Ohio but has lived in California, Chilé, Michigan, and Colorado. Alex graduated from the University of Dayton in 2007 with a bachelor's degree in Geology. He returned to the university to earn a secondary education teaching credential in 2010. Alex has been professionally involved with outdoor and experiential education for over twelve years. He has taught classes on backpacking and kayaking, instructed students at a residential outdoor educational facility in the Sierra Nevada Mountains, and led National Parks camping trips. Alex's relationship with The Island School dates back to the Fall of 2014 when he volunteered for the Cape Eleuthera family. Today, in addition to coordinating the Teaching Fellowship Program, Alex advises research with the Center for Sustainable Development, and is an expedition leader for sailing and kayaking trips. In his free time, Alex loves freediving and distance running. 

 
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Chelsea Staunton

Histories Teacher

Chelsea graduated from Sewanee: The University of the South in 2014 with a major in Environmental Studies: Arts and Humanities. While at Sewanee, Chelsea played on the Women’s Varsity Lacrosse Team, leading the team as Captain her senior year. Chelsea spent her summers during college leading the Outdoor Leadership Program at a small summer camp in Virginia. After graduation, Chelsea went on to work at Google in San Francisco. Chelsea is thrilled to be on Eleuthera and cannot wait to share her passion for education, leadership, and adventure. In her free time Chelsea enjoys spending time with friends, family, hiking, traveling, re-reading Harry Potter, skiing, floating in the ocean and listening to music.

 
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Tamara Pletzer

Applied Mathematics Teaching Fellow

Tam grew up in Boulder, Colorado and now calls New Zealand home. She graduated from University of Edinburgh with a degree in Mathematics and was able to combine her fascination for nature and the outdoors with Applied Mathematics in her dissertation on dispersive waves. Through a course on mathematical education she was able to teach in two primary schools in Edinburgh which sparked her interest in teaching mathematics. An avid traveller, she spent a month over the summer solo backpacking and island hopping around Indonesia and spends every break possible exploring new places. In her free time, she enjoys scuba diving, hiking, swimming, skiing and any activity that involves being outside as much as possible. As an Island School alumni in 2012 and an aquaponics intern in 2015, Tam is excited to be back in Eleuthera and to share her passion for mathematics, education, and  adventure.

 

 
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Andrew Bridgers

Applied Mathematics Teaching Fellow

Andrew has come out of the mountains where he was teaching math at the High Mountain Institute to embrace all the wonderful challenges and joys of Eleuthera. He loves pushing students to accept and embrace the unknown and is especially excited to share his love of patterns with students. While his undergraduate thesis was in abstract algebra and number theory, he loves the chance to put theory to practice and tackle the water cisterns on campus! Growing up in Nashville, TN, he attributes much of his early love for the outdoors and hands on learning to the Waldorf School he attended. Among his favorite outdoor pursuits are hiking and trail running, backpacking, cooking in the backcountry, whitewater rafting, and sea kayaking. As a player on both his high school and college ultimate frisbee teams, Andrew loves coaching and teaching new players to throw. When he isn’t doing math or hiking, Andrew can often be found reading in his hammock, cooking for friends, or playing Spades.

 
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Evan Sawan
Marine Ecology Teaching Fellow

Evan began traveling and exploring the above and underwater world at the age of 10 when he moved overseas and in middle & high school he spent his summers as a shipmate aboard sailing vessels in the British Virgin Islands and Thailand. While aboard, he learned to scuba dive, sail, and took part in marine biology research projects. Before heading to university, he spent an unforgettable week with the Maldives Whale Shark Research Program. He earned a Bachelors degree in Marine Affairs with minors in Business Administration and Modern Languages (Spanish and French) at the Rosenstiel School of Marine & Atmospheric Sciences. Evan then worked as a community service trip leader in China, Costa Rica, and Peru. He worked aboard small vessels as a scuba instructor and achieved his EFR Instructor and IYT Flotilla Skipper certifications. Before his adventure to The Island School, he was an outdoor science school teacher in the San Bernardino mountains of Southern California. Evan looks forward to using his diverse skill set and Wilderness First Responder training to support the Cape Eleuthera Island School community in their goal to promote the growth of positive-thinking and sustainable-minded young individuals.

 
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Jason Kincaid
Marine Ecology Teacher and Expedition Head

Jason grew up in southern New Hampshire, then moved to southern Ohio for high school and college.  Graduating with a degree in computer network systems, Jason started working for Ohio schools, teaching teachers how to use school networks. After gaining his Dive Instructor qualification, Jason moved to Andros Island in The Bahamas to teach week-long programs to visiting high school and college marine biology students. Teaching primarily coral reef ecology and water sports, Jason stayed in the islands for six years. Jason then traveled around the world for three years with a job in the hospitality industry, only to come back to the Bahamas to take up teaching again. As a Marine Ecology teacher, Dive Instructor, swim coach, and a kayak / sail expedition leader, Jason uses his past experience in The Bahamas to educate students about the amazing underwater world. By trade, Jason is also a USCG Boat Captain, SCUBA instructor, kayak guide, and enjoys all water sports, especially sailing.

 
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Ariel Potter

Literature Teaching Fellow

Ariel grew up in Yarmouth, Maine, a small coastal community that filled her blood with a bit of salt water.  She headed west into the Rocky Mountains of Colorado and attended Colorado College where she studied Sociology and Education.  Ariel has spent her summers as a backpacking and hiking leader for Apogee Adventures where she found herself hiking in Olympic National Park, the Northern Cascades and most recently scaling the Pyrenees Mountains in both Spain and France.  Ariel attended the Island School Summer Term in 2011, was an Educational Programs Intern in 2015 and is thrilled to rejoin the CEIS community. Eleuthera holds a special place in her heart and she is excited to get to know more nooks and crannies of the island this year. If she’s not working you can find her napping in the sun or adventuring in the ocean.

 
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Kate Kincaid
Research Department Head

Kate graduated from Bangor University, UK with a degree in Zoology and Marine Zoology in 2004. Following this, Kate spent a year traveling the world before returning to study a Masters in Marine Conservation. Kate worked for a UK non-profit organization on Andros, The Bahamas for 3 years teaching marine conservation. It was here she met her husband, fellow Island School teacher Jason Kincaid. Kate and Jason then travelled the world working on sailing yachts. Kate is currently finishing her PhD thesis in fisheries and marine conservation from Memorial University, Canada.  Kate has been part of the IS community since 2012 and has worked as a research advisor in past semesters before taking on her current role. Kate is mummy to Rose (2 years) who has grown up on Eleuthera. Outside of work, Kate enjoys family time, sailing, swimming, traveling and exploring the world through the eyes of a toddler.

 
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Ella Kim
Applied Maths Teacher

Ella grew up in Brooklyn, and calls the Pacific Ocean surrounding Southern California home. She graduated from Scripps College, where she majored in Environmental Analysis, with a focus on Marine Ecology and Oceanography. Throughout her time as an undergraduate she researched coral paleoceanography, melanoma pathology, intertidal barnacles, and marine mammal bioacoustics. Ella also founded and captained the women’s club soccer team at the Claremont Colleges. She has worked as an Applied Biostatistics tutor, a TA for Marine Ecology and Environmental Science labs, an education specialist at Birch Aquarium at the Scripps Institution of Oceanography, and as a research associate for the Billion Oyster Project. Ella was a teaching fellow at The Island School last year and is excited to continue at The Island School as Applied Mathematics Department Head this year. In her spare time Ella enjoys running, adventuring, eating spicy foods, geeking out about marine invertebrates, and exploring the ocean.

 
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Lauren Gould
Histories Teaching Fellow

Lauren grew up in Baltimore, MD before heading south to the College of Charleston where she studied Hospitality and Tourism Management. Lauren spent her summers during college as a counselor at Kieve Camp in Maine. She has a passion for working with children and was a part-time nanny throughout college. She also worked as a Tourism and Development teacher for the Island School Summer Term program in the summers of 2017 and 2018. Lauren was an Island School student in the fall of 2012, and she couldn’t be more excited to be back living in Eleuthera and can’t wait to share her passion and love for this place with all of you.

 

 
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Lydia Felty
Community Outreach Teacher and Coordinator

Lydia grew up in a small town in western Ohio, and graduated from Kenyon College with a degree in American Studies and English. While focusing her studies on the history of science and creative non-fiction, she found herself trying everything from playing club soccer to editing a literary magazine. Over the past few years, Lydia has worked as a BB gun range director at a summer camp, a copyeditor, and an education intern for NASA. Lydia was a Literature and Writing teaching fellow at The Island School last year and is excited to continue at The Island School as a Community Outreach teacher this year. She enjoys exploring Eleuthera, drinking coffee, talking about pop culture, and and recklessly attempting difficult crossword puzzles.

 
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Ivy Wappler

Histories Teaching Fellow

Hailing from coastal Connecticut, Ivy has learned from exploring new intellectual, environmental, and social landscapes in Eleuthera as an Island School student, and in Colorado during college. She feels lucky to have attended the Island School, which planted seeds for her Feminist and Gender Studies major in college. Ivy loves to think about how nature, culture, and power intersect in different ways for different people. Ivy is interested in interrogating the ways in which systems of power permeate dominant institutions, like tourism, for example, and in turning a critical lens to what popular consumer culture deems normal and positive. She is eager to join the Island School team as a Histories fellow this year, as this was her favorite class as a student. Ivy comes from a big family and loves to watch cartoons, laugh, and go underwater. She is here to make this place better for everyone involved and in proximity.

 
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Taylor Haag

Literature and Writing Teacher

Taylor was born and raised in southeastern North Carolina and attended Appalachian State University, earning a bachelor’s degree in journalism. Since graduating he has spent time teaching middle and high school English in Richmond, Virginia, mentored college students aboard schooners in the Atlantic Ocean, and organized writing workshops in Nantucket, Massachusetts. Taylor enjoys traveling, playing the drums, running and cooking.

 
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Jack Clayton

Literature and Writing Fellow

Jack grew up in Yarmouth, Maine and attended Kenyon College in central Ohio where he studied Biochemistry, Environmental Studies and Studio Art (specifically photography). While at Kenyon, Jack was also heavily involved in coordinating and leading backpacking trips for pre-orientation students as well as the enrolled student body. Jack served as the Vice President and eventually the President of the Outing Club at Kenyon. He spent many summers leading more backpacking trips for teenagers with Overland Summers in locations such as The White Mountains in New Hampshire, Yellowstone National Park and in the Swiss, French and Italian Alps. Jack has previously worked at The Island School as Residential Coordinator for the Summer Term program. Jack is also serving as the dorm head of Beach House. He is passionate about working outdoors and helping to create unique and supportive communities in anyway that he can.

 

 

 
 
 

Looking for researchers and other Cape Eleuthera community members? Check out the Cape Eleuthera Foundation and Cape Eleuthera Institute team pages.

Interested in working for The Island School or its affiliate organizations? Check out open positions on the Cape Eleuthera Foundation website.