Instructor Spotlight: Jessica Lisovsky

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Jessica Lisovsky - Spanish Language Instructor | Seattle Central College - Continuing Education
Jessica Lisovsky - Spanish Language Instructor | Seattle Central College - Continuing Education
Jessica Lisovsky - Spanish Language Instructor | Seattle Central College - Continuing Education

Take an Immersive Approach

One of the best ways to learn a foreign language is to live in a country that speaks it for awhile. But not all of us can hop on a plane and spend 6 months in Chile, so we have to rely on the next best thing: Learning the language using techniques similar to those of an immersion program.

Given her experience learning Spanish in a native-speaking country as a child, instructor Jessica Lisovsky teaches her Spanish classes using the Natural Way. She focuses on helping you develop your language skills in a manner similar to how children learn their first language — using visuals, conversation, and more.

Learn more about Jessica, and then consider joining her for one of her Spanish the Natural Way classes in the future.

What classes do you teach for Seattle Central?

I teach Spanish the Natural Way (Beginning through Advanced levels) as well as a couple intensives on communication structures and Spanish fables and stories.

How long have you been teaching?

I’ve been teaching since the 1980s; I taught French and Spanish at Miami Central High School in Florida, and then started teaching Spanish at Seattle Central in 1990.

What's your educational & professional background?

I have a Bachelor’s in French and Spanish and a Master’s in Hispanic Studies.

What other kind of life experience do you have that influences what and how you teach?

My interest and propensity toward foreign languages and cultures began early in my life, with my parents.

My mother and father both spoke foreign languages and were always curious about other cultures.

My father was born in Europe and moved the family to Barcelona, Spain when I was 11 years old. I went to Spanish and French schools during the 7 years we lived there. I had family in Europe and my friends were all from non-American backgrounds.

Learning languages by living in-country or ‘immersed’ was a fascinating experience. There are times of great frustration rewarded by moments of insight and flashes of understanding that make communication with another human being seem almost magical.

I try to recreate those ‘moments’ for my students and always encourage them to travel and live in a foreign country so they might experience those moments and build on them.

What do you enjoy the most about teaching your classes at Seattle Central?

My students! I’m awed by their dedication and hard work and their willingness to enter into the activities I bring to class.

Learning a language is a bit like learning to play an instrument: It takes a long time to become an expert, but you can have fun in the process. Laughter is a big part of our classes.

Capitol Hill has always been a favorite neighborhood of mine. I like that SCC is a community focal point and hosts many interesting events that give voice to the central area of Seattle, as well as national and international issues.

The student body is very diverse and I feel very comfortable working in a place that is open to the world and its citizens.

Tell us about an inspirational teaching moment.

When a student reports that first experience of understanding — maybe it was interpreting for a Spanish-speaker who was in need, or they just broke through a grammar point that had dogged them — the excitement they show is what makes this work so rewarding for me.

Jessica's Favorites

Books

  • Zora Neal Hurston (Their Eyes Were Watching God)
  • Everything Alice Walker, Barbara Kingsolver and Toni Morrison have written

Hobbies

  • Being outdoors — gardening, walking, skiing, swimming, hiking and sketching in national parks

Movie

  • I love so many movies so I’ll pick the most recent one that touched me deeply: Moonlight. It happens to take place in the Miami neighborhood where I taught high school for 6 years and I feel like I could have known the main character.

Music

  • Ruthie Foster singing Maya Angelou’s poem: Phenomenal Woman

Travel

  • Spain is, of course, my home in many ways; I am always drawn to Barcelona where I spent my formative years. I have returned over and over to visit old friends and have watched it become an even more spectacular city with the opening of the city to the sea for the Olympics and the uniquely modernist architecture of Gaudi.
  • After seeing many great capitals with all the wonders they have, my best memories are from road trips across the countryside in Spain, Cuba, Mexico, stopping to have lunch in dusty villages, exploring local ruins or points of interest and hanging out at the local cafe and chatting with folks over a beer.

Instructor Spotlight: Annie Dumont

Annie Dumont - DIY Natural Products Instructor | Seattle Central College - Continuing Education
Annie Dumont - DIY Natural Products Instructor | Seattle Central College - Continuing Education
Annie Dumont - DIY Natural Products Instructor | Seattle Central College - Continuing Education

Do it Yourself!

Annie Dumont - DIY Natural Products Instructor | Seattle Central College - Continuing EducationEven all-natural cleaning and personal care products can have extra ingredients to preserve them and ensure they’re shelf-stable.

A great way to ensure that you’re using 100% all-natural products is to make them yourself.

After a personal love affair with creating soaps and other cleaning products for herself and her family, Annie Dumont decided to go into business to share her passion with the world.

She is now offering her DIY Natural Products series of workshops at Seattle Central, which cover the following:

Learn more about Annie’s background and approach, and then download her DIY toothpaste how-to guide below.

What classes do you teach for Seattle Central?

I currently teach Basic Cleaning Products, Medicine Cabinet Products and Personal Care Basics.

I’m hoping to expand my offerings to include some soap classes and classes that families can take together.

How long have you been teaching?

I’ve been teaching professionally for 4 years, but I have been teaching friends and family for more than 10 years.

What's your educational & professional background?

After a long romance with making everything from soap to lip balm to diaper rash cream, I decided to open my doors (or my mind) to teaching others my love and passion for crafting natural personal care and cleaning products.

I opened A Kitchen Story in 2012 to spread the love by way of individual and group classes.

What do you enjoy the most about teaching your classes at Seattle Central?

I love to watch the passion and enthusiasm of my students.

Tell us about an inspirational teaching moment.

During one of my classes, after everyone just finished making a batch of laundry detergent, one student yelled out, “I can’t wait to go home and do laundry!”

Her excitement was inspiring and contagious.

Annie's Favorites

Restaurant in Seattle

  • Lotus Thai Cuisine

Hobbies

  • Making soap, of course!
  • Refinishing old furniture, making something old new again

Travel

  • Hawaii was the first vacation my husband and I went on together before we were married. The memories are awesome and plentiful.

Instructor Spotlight: Gilberto Nunez-Lira

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Gilberto Nunez-Lira - Spanish Instructor | Seattle Central College - Continuing Education
Spanish Language Classes in Seattle WA

Spice Things Up

We’ve written about how learning a new language can change your perspective, but it’s also a great way to shake things up a bit in your life.

And who better to help you shake things up than a Spanish teacher with a love for Cuban music?!

Meet instructor Gilberto Nunez-Lira, who has been sharing his knowledge and experience in our Spanish for Travelers class for the last 10 years.

What classes do you teach for Seattle Central?

I teach Spanish For Travelers for Continuing Education at Seattle Central College.

How long have you been teaching?

I have been teaching for about 10 years or so at Seattle Central.

What's your educational & professional background?

I graduated with two Bachelor Degrees at the University of Washington (Latin American Studies and Spanish).

I have been influenced by great professors throughout my educational experience.

What do you enjoy the most about teaching your classes at Seattle Central?

When I teach, I enjoy the positive impact in the students’ life. I love when they show interest in experiencing the language.

Seattle Central College provides a great opportunity and learning environment for the teaching of Spanish.

Tell us about an inspirational teaching moment.

It is an inspirational moment when the students participate in class.

Gilberto Nunez-Lira - Spanish Instructor | Seattle Central College - Continuing Education

Gilberto's Favorites

Music

  • My favorite songs are those with a Cuban rhythm

Hobbies

  • Dancing!

Travel

  • Mexico, because I have the opportunity to visit and see my relatives
There are two types of people in the world, those who are learning by doing different activities in life, and those who are just observing others.

Instructor Spotlight: Monica Casimiro

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Monica Casimiro - Italian Food Instructor | Seattle Central College - Continuing Education
Monica Casimiro - Italian Food Instructor | Seattle Central College - Continuing Education
Monica Casimiro - Italian Food Instructor | Seattle Central College - Continuing Education

Mangiamo!

The Mediterranean diet is heavy in vegetables and olive oil, while keeping protein to a minimum — a combination that has resulted in the population of this region being some of the healthiest people in the world.

But it’s not only highly nutritious: It’s downright delicious, too.

A native of Sardinia, Monica Casimiro has been crafting Italian food since childhood, and she recently began collaborating with Seattle Central’s Continuing Education program to share her passion with others.

Our Exploring Sardinian Cuisine & Culture series is comprised of three hands-on workshops, hosted at Monica’s beautiful facility in the SODO area of Seattle.

Each workshop will focus on a specific traditional dish; you’ll create it with your fellow students, eat it together, and then complement it with a delectable dessert pairing.

Interested in learning more about Monica? Read her profile below.

How long have you been teaching?

I have been teaching for nearly 10 years, and my students include both adults and children.

What's your educational & professional background?

I’m an early childhood educator, with over 20 years of experience.

What do you enjoy the most about teaching your classes at Seattle Central?

I love meeting new people, and revealing to them the secrets of an ancient cuisine.

Tell us about an inspirational teaching moment.

During one of my fresh pasta classes, one of my students — a very young financial consultant — said that, ‘Making ravioli is an emotional and fulfilling experience.’

That quote inspired me to focus on making fresh pasta, and teaching others how to do that. I want to have other people experience the same thing she described!

There are two types of people in the world, those who follow their dreams and those who keep on dreaming.

Monica Casimiro - Italian Food Instructor | Seattle Central College - Continuing Education

Monica's Favorites

Hobby

  • Cooking, of course!

Movie

  • Chocolat

Music

  • I love David Bowie
  • American Boy by Estelle

Restaurant in Seattle

  • La Carta De Oaxaca in Ballard

Instructor Spotlight: Sharon Hager

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Sharon Hager - Graphic Design Instructor | Seattle Central College - Continuing Education
Sharon Hager - Graphic Design Instructor | Seattle Central College - Continuing Education
Sharon Hager - Graphic Design Instructor | Seattle Central College - Continuing Education

Decoding Design

Graphic design has undergone a fairly impressive revolution over the past few decades, thanks in large part to the advent of personal computers, and the powerful design and publishing software that followed shortly thereafter.

But as they say: With great power comes great responsibility.

Once you’ve installed Adobe Illustrator or InDesign on your computer, do you really know what to do with it? And just because you know how to use the software, does that mean you’ll be able to design fetching brochures, logos, business cards, and more?

That’s where veteran designer and Continuing Education instructor Sharon Hager comes in.

With nearly 30 years of experience under her belt, she’s skilled in providing guidance on design best practices, as well as how to effectively use the Adobe suite of design software.

Sharon recently shared more about her background and experience with us; read on to learn more about her.

What classes do you teach for Seattle Central?

How long have you been teaching?

I believe I started in 1994.

In addition to the classes that I teach at Seattle Central, I’ve also taught on-location watercolor journaling classes, and I’ve led artists’ travel workshops in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico and Paris, France.

What's your educational & professional background?

I started as an English major, but quickly switched to Fine Arts, focused on painting. I then pursued additional classes in illustration and graphic design.

Professionally, I was a freelance designer for awhile, and then I landed a position as the graphic designer for Seattle Central College — which I’ve been doing for the past 26 years!

What do you enjoy the most about teaching your classes at Seattle Central?

I love interacting with students, and the energetic and diverse learning environment that Seattle Central promotes.

Tell us about an inspirational teaching moment.

I love it when a student has an “aha!” moment — they suddenly understand something they’ve been struggling with, and their excitement is palpable.

It’s like a flash of light!

For example, drawing with the pen tool in Adobe Illustrator can be a challenge to master, and there have been a number of “aha!” moments during that particular hands-on lesson.

There’s often a feeling of excitement at the end of a class when the students know that they have learned something new and useful.

Sharon Hager - Graphic Design Instructor | Seattle Central College - Continuing Education

Sharon's Favorites

Music

  • I especially like standard jazz and blues

Hobbies

  • TRAVEL — especially to Paris

Instructor Spotlight: Colleen Comidy

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TESOL Certificate Program in Seattle WA
Colleen Comidy - TESOL Instructor | Seattle Central College - Continuing Education
Colleen Comidy - TESOL Instructor | Seattle Central College - Continuing Education

Your Next Adventure: Teaching English Abroad

Traveling to other countries can often focus on sightseeing, sometimes at the expense of truly getting to know a place — and the people who live there.

An exceptional way to learn more about a specific culture is to move there, and just stay awhile. And you can do that by learning a marketable skill — like teaching English — that will not only support you while you live in another country, it will give you an instant introduction to your new community.

The first step on this adventure? Get certified to Teach English to Speakers of Other Languages — or TESOL for short.

Seattle Central’s TESOL Certification 90-hour program is comprised of a Basics and a Grammar course, with on campus and online educational elements.

Your sherpa is skilled instructor Colleen Comidy, who uses her extensive experience in teaching foreign languages and English as a Second Language to guide budding teachers in the fine art of teaching English to non-native speakers.

Read on to learn more about Colleen’s background and experience.

What classes do you teach for Seattle Central?

I teach a wide range of ESL classes in Seattle Central’s Institute of English (SCIE) — from beginning level to college bridge, in all 4 skill areas: reading, writing, listening and speaking.

In addition, I teach the TESOL Certificate classes — Basics and Grammar for TESOL — for Continuing Education.

How long have you been teaching?

32 years!

What's your educational & professional background?

While teaching has been my longest career — I have been at Seattle Central 16 years — I have done many interesting and varied things.

My BA from the University of Washington is in Clothing, Textiles and Art, and I worked for several years making leather bags and garments for a local Seattle shop.

I went on to working in the costume shop at Pacific Northwest Ballet, and after a few years managed the shop for a time. I was also a dresser for theatrical productions in Seattle.

While studying for my BA, I also took Italian classes and my love of the Italian language inspired me to go to Italy, where I found work with a bridal couturier. I spent a year there and when I came back, I decided to further my love of Italian by earning an MA in Italian Language and Literature at New York University.

While I studied, I worked for several costumers in New York, making costumes for Broadway plays and the Public Theater’s Shakespeare in the Park productions. I also worked for a year at the Costume Institute at the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

Upon completion of my MA, I started to teach Italian at the Fashion Institute of Technology and Pratt Institute.

After some years, I decided to go abroad again and, at that time, I transferred my skills from teaching Italian to teaching English and I have been teaching English ever since!

What do you enjoy the most about teaching your classes at Seattle Central?

The students!

I meet so many interesting and inspiring people in the classroom.

I also enjoy just getting to know students, hearing their stories and watching them grow as learners and speakers of English.

I love Seattle Central’s diversity and commitment to serving all students.

I also love the lively urban setting, eating lunch in the Culinary Program’s dining rooms and Friday afternoon BOGO pastries!

Tell us about an inspirational teaching moment.

When students “get” it: They make a breakthrough and demonstrate proficiency in something they have been struggling with.

Colleen Comidy - TESOL Instructor | Seattle Central College - Continuing Education

Student Testimonial

Colleen did a great job, and I immensely enjoyed her class and teaching style! It is clear that she is very dedicated to the material and her students.

Colleen's Favorites

Music

  • I don’t really have one favorite — I enjoy jazz, blues, Motown, funk and more
  • Some of my all-time favorites are the Rolling Stones, Rod Stewart and Tina Turner, but I also enjoy many contemporary artists

Hobbies

  • Reading
  • Sewing
  • Walking

Movies

  • It changes all the time — I like “slice of life“movies that have happy, sad, humorous and unexpected moments
  • Recently, I really enjoyed Brooklyn and Boyhood

Yoga Instructor Spotlight: Dee Williams & Julia Goldie

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Julia Goldie - Yoga Instructor | Seattle Central College - Continuing Education
Yoga Teacher Training & Certification | Seattle Central College - Continuing Education
Dee Williams - Yoga Instructor | Seattle Central College - Continuing Education

Deepen Your Practice

Yoga is a lifelong study — there’s a reason that it’s called a ‘practice’ and not ‘perfect.’ Whether you gain new insights into yourself or discover different ways to move your body, it is always changing, and always challenging.

If you’ve been taking classes for awhile and are wondering what your next step might be, consider taking a teacher training program.

This summer, we’re offering our first Yoga Teacher Training and Certification Program in collaboration with Seattle Central’s Mitchell Activity Center. For enthusiasts who want to have a greater understanding of alignment, flow, anatomy & physiology as it relates to yoga, our 100-hour intensive will provide you an in-depth look at this discipline. And if you’re interested in teaching yoga professionally, our 200-hour intensive will provide the same in-depth information, with twice as much time to practice and apply what you’ve learned — plus, you’ll be eligible to register with the Yoga Alliance upon completion.

This program is taught by Dee Williams and Julia Goldie, who were kind enough to share with us more about their backgrounds. Read on to learn more about them.

What classes do you teach for Seattle Central?

Dee: I am teaching the Yoga Teacher Training starting this summer.

Julia: Yoga and Total Body Conditioning.

How long have you been teaching?

Dee: I started teaching at the community college level over twenty years ago. My love for teaching yoga began in earnest in 2007.

Julia: I started off teaching art 14 years ago, then wilderness recreation skills 13 years ago, and fitness specific classes 6 years ago.

What's your educational & professional background?

Dee: I have a background in the tech industry and worked at several companies that are credited with leading the information technology revolution.

Julia: Business, Art, Fitness and Recreation

What do you enjoy the most about teaching your classes at Seattle Central?

Dee: I most enjoy helping new students start their journey into yoga. I also appreciate that the school has a variety of innovative programs for people of all backgrounds.

Julia: The group atmosphere creates sense of community and a support system to keep on developing the type of fitness you practice. I love the diversity of people we get at the college. We get all ages, body types, levels of fitness, cultures and ethnicities in each class.

Tell us about an inspirational teaching moment.

Dee: The most inspirational learning moment was when I learned that yoga helps you explore yourself at a very deep level.

Julia: The wonderful thing about yoga is that there are so many of these moments. One of my favorites happened about half a year ago when I received a beautiful email from a former student telling me how my class had changed her life. How the love she developed for yoga in my class has become part of her, leading to a healthier, happier and well balanced lifestyle. She had severe sciatica before starting yoga, it affected her sleep, school work, social life, weight and overall quality of life. Before yoga she thought she was going to have to live this way for ever.

There are two types of people in the world, those who pursue their dreams and those who defer them.

Dee & Julia's Favorites

Dee

  • Music: Jazz
  • Movie: The Matrix
  • Seattle Restaurant: Lucky Diner in Belltown
  • Hobby: Roller skating

Julia

  • Music: Sugar Magnolia by the Grateful Dead
  • Movie: Mary Poppins
  • Seattle Restaurant: Thai Amorn is my favorite near Seattle, but it is in Mountlake Terrace. In Seattle proper I would have to say Dragonfish.
  • Hobby: Yoga

 

Instructor Spotlight: Teresa Ramon Joffre

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Teresa Ramon Joffre - Spanish Language Instructor | Seattle Central College - Continuing Education
Teresa Ramon Joffre - Spanish Language Instructor | Seattle Central College - Continuing Education
Teresa Ramon Joffre - Spanish Language Instructor | Seattle Central College - Continuing Education

The United States Is the 2nd Largest Spanish-Speaking Country in the World

 

You read that right. After Mexico, more people in the US speak Spanish (either as their primary / only language, or as bilingual speakers) than any other Spanish-speaking country. And it’s only growing.

As a professional, knowing how to speak Spanish with your coworkers, colleagues and customers is becoming more and more important. Since we began offering our Spanish for Business Professionals Level 1 course last year, the demand has increased quarter over quarter — resulting in the addition of a Level 2 course, with a Level 3 possibly on the horizon.

The popularity of these classes is due, in part, to the increased used of Spanish in the workplace, but it’s also due to the dynamic and inspirational teaching methods of the instructor, Teresa Ramon Joffre. With a background in professional translation for different industries, she’s uniquely skilled to guide professionals in the basics of business Spanish. She also offers Spanish Conversation classes for those who want to practice speaking Spanish more naturally and effectively.

Read on to learn more about Teresa.

What classes do you teach for Seattle Central?

I teach Spanish for Business Professionals (Level 1 and Level 2) and Spanish Conversation (beginner and intermediate).

How long have you been teaching?

I have been teaching for a year at Seattle Central, and I have been teaching Spanish for over 15 years in total.

What's your educational & professional background?

I have a translation degree from NYU, and am a professional Spanish Translator for primarily the biomedical and health sciences fields.

In addition to my work at Seattle Central and my translation work, I am a ESL/EFL teacher.

What do you enjoy the most about teaching your classes at Seattle Central?

I enjoy the interaction with the students and the opportunity to be a facilitator in their language experience. It is also wonderful to introduce them to the culture.

Seattle Central is a great place to learn and teach. I see students from diverse backgrounds and walks of life. I also feel a lot of support from my supervisors and they are so open to new ideas and projects.

Tell us about an inspirational teaching moment.

My most inspirational teaching moment is when I see students understand the language and make progress.

Also, when they find a passion in the language; for example, they start enjoying poetry or music in Spanish.

Student Testimonials

Teresa is a gifted teacher. She was adept at tailoring the class to various language experience levels. The class was a lot of fun.

Teresa Ramon has an outstanding ability to get students to speak Spanish in the classroom and not be embarrassed by their mistakes. She is an excellent teacher.

Teresa is just delightful and is a wonderful teacher.

Teresa's Favorites

Hobbies

  • I enjoy walking specially in the Summer. The parks in Seattle are so beautiful.
  • I practice yoga and I am a yoga teacher. I occassionally organize workshops to teach yoga in Spanish.

Movies

  • I love comedies, Woody Allen and Pedro Almodovar are some of my favorites.
  • I am very inspired by the new Peruvian and Latin American Independent films or productions.

Instructor Spotlight: Claire Wagenseil

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Claire Wagenseil - French Instructor | Seattle Central College - Continuing Education
Claire Wagenseil - French Instructor | Seattle Central College - Continuing Education
Claire Wagenseil - French Instructor | Seattle Central College - Continuing Education

Parlez Vous Francais?

If your answer to that question is anything other than a resounding “Oui!” then it’s time to change that.

For the past ten years, instructor Claire Wagenseil has been guiding students through French culture, vocabulary and pronunciation — first as a tutor, then as a teacher in a French school and most recently as part of Seattle Central’s Continuing Education program.

Her popular classes delve into everything from basic linguistics to pop culture to historical poetry, providing students a variety of ways to engage with the language.

She recently sat down with us to share a bit about her background and experiences. Read on to learn more about Claire.

What classes do you teach for Seattle Central?

I teach French 2, 3 and 4 in Continuing Education.

This summer, I will also be offering a class in French Phonetics Through Poetry for the first time, and I plan to offer a French 5 class — which is conversation-based — in the future for those who want to continue studying French beyond Level 4.

How long have you been teaching?

I started tutoring in high school, and have been teaching in different settings for about ten years.

What's your educational & professional background?

I studied at Stanford University, where I majored in English & French Literature and minored in Math.

After graduating, I moved to France to work as an English Teaching Assistant outside of Paris, and began studying at the Université de Paris III – Sorbonne Nouvelle, where I completed a Master 1 in General and Compared Literature.

I began teaching French at the Alliance Française de Seattle after moving back to Seattle in 2010, and have been teaching at Central since Summer 2015.

What do you enjoy the most about teaching your classes at Seattle Central?

I enjoy the interaction with the students, learning how different people’s minds work and how they process language.

In terms of teaching at Central, I really like the positive energy around learning and the support the school offers for students.

Just walking down the halls, you can see all the resources available to every different kind of person, and it just feels like there is a real willingness to help people in whatever they want to accomplish.

Tell us about an inspirational teaching moment.

There are lots, but the first one that comes to mind is when I was tutoring two bilingual 8-year-old twins, a boy and a girl, in reading and writing French.

As I got to know them a little bit, I found out the boy was really into science. One day, we were reading something together and somehow the Big Bang came up.

I was just trying to engage him a little in something I knew he was interested in, but he proceeded to explain to me, in scientific detail, how the Big Bang happened, which elements burned off first in which order, all in French but with the occasional English word like “red giant.”

He said the one thing he still couldn’t figure out was this formula “E = MC2…”

I was totally in shock, but I felt like I had discovered a genius, and it was really cool that he was able to share all of that with me.

There are two types of people in the world, those who think rude French waiters are rude and those who think rude French waiters are awesome.

Claire Wagenseil - French Instructor | Seattle Central College - Continuing Education

Student Testimonials

Claire really gives us good, focused, speaking practice on the grammar construction which we’re studying. Also has creative and fun ideas for getting us to talk.

I really liked how much interaction there was, and how Claire made time to address particular topics of interest and current events. Reading articles and studying song lyrics were especially fun and interesting.

Claire is very organized and speaks French like a native, which is helpful. It is a fun class.

Claire's Favorites

Hobbies

  • Playing pool

Movie

  • The Darjeeling Limited

Instructor Spotlight: Trey Reckling

Trey Reckling - Cannabis Instructor | Seattle Central College - Continuing Education
Trey Reckling - Cannabis Instructor | Seattle Central College - Continuing Education
Trey Reckling - Cannabis Instructor | Seattle Central College - Continuing Education

Expand Your Mind

Prior to its prohibition in the early 20th century, cannabis was cultivated for both medicinal and industrial purposes for thousands of years. But because of the international focus on limiting access for nearly a century, much of the knowledge around its different uses has been lost.

Since it was legalized in Washington state a couple of years ago, the industry has been growing and changing to adapt to new regulations. While there is still a difference between medical-grade and recreational-only cannabis products, medical dispensaries will be absorbed into many recreational retail establishments later this year.

As we re-engage with cannabis, how can we learn to use it safely? If you want to work in this burgeoning industry, will you be able to offer useful advice to your customers? Are there ways to use cannabis to support or improve your health?

We began offering our Cannabis Foundation Course this year to answer these questions, and more. During this one-day workshop, expert instructor Trey Reckling provides an overview of the scientific and medicinal properties of cannabis, as well as information on the laws in Washington state.

Learn more about Trey’s background and experience, as well as what he enjoys about teaching this class.

What class do you teach for Seattle Central?

I currently teach the Cannabis Foundation Course.

How long have you been teaching?

I have been working in higher education for 15 years in a variety of roles: Ombudsman, director of student development and professional development trainer.

What's your educational & professional background?

I graduated with a Bachelor’s in Theater from Florida State University and a Master’s in Therapeutic Recreation.

Alternative dispute resolution and communication skills have been a particular focus of my training and education ever since.

What do you enjoy the most about teaching your class?

After over 70 years of prohibition and misinformation, there is so much to for us to re-learn about cannabis!

I love having the opportunity to teach people about it — especially when they make the connection between their own health and the possibility of reducing their intake of prescription medicines, which can be both addictive and have adverse long-term side affects.

We often joke that people in the class probably had great-grandmothers who could have taught us a thing or two about the use of cannabis — both as a folk medicine and a prescribed drug — since it was used so commonly before prohibition.

Why did you choose to teach your class at Seattle Central?

I really like the diverse students that Seattle Central draws in: We have had students from 21 to people in their 70s taking this course.

We have also attracted people from other parts of the US and Canada who do not have access to this sort of education.

I particularly like that the Continuing Education program and its Innovations Director, Lisa Babinec, is so open to knowledge of all sorts — from the distillation arts to culinary arts to cannabis. How can you beat that?!

I believe Seattle Central has the right perspective in education, and provides opportunities like this to people that other institutions simply would not even consider.

Seattle Central has been a great partner.

Tell us about an inspirational teaching moment.

Most recently, I went into a recreational cannabis store and the guy working the front door was a student we had in class. He got his job, in part, because he had sought to distinguish himself from other candidates through education, and it worked!

We have had several students get jobs as a result of studying with us, and that’s a big reason why we do what we do.

There are two types of people in the world, those who color within the lines and those who regard the lines as merely a suggestion.

Trey's Favorites

Seattle Restaurant

  • I am really loving Jack’s BBQ on Airport Way right now. It reminds me of Southern BBQ and makes me miss home.

Music

  • Bill Withers

Movie

  • Stand By Me
Trey Reckling - Cannabis Instructor | Seattle Central College - Continuing Education
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