Dedicated to promoting cross-cultural learning and understanding through international education and exchange.
Dr. Emily Hong Yue Guo grew up in Beijing, China. She studied Chinese Cultural Studies at both Chinese and American universities. Having lived and worked in America for more than thirty years, Dr. Guo has extensive knowledge and experience in cross-cultural understanding and exchanges. She taught Chinese culture, religions and history at American colleges. She is the founder and former executive director of the Vermont Peace Academy and former director of the Asia-Pacific Institute and Study Abroad Program at Goddard College. Over the past eleven years, she has devoted herself to building international learning and exchange programs to promote cultural understanding. This mission has led to the creation of new online language programs as well.
Dick Taylor is the education consultant and the residential site coordinator for SPIRAL International. A retired educator living in northwest Vermont, Dick holds degrees in Nuclear Medicine Technology, Education, and Administration and Planning. His work experience includes being a math and science teacher, principal of schools ranging in grade levels from pre-K through grade 12, and Superintendent of Schools. His interest in international opportunities for students takes him regularly to China as well as working with SPIRAL International.
Jia (Jason) Shi was born and raised in northeast China. He received his bachelor’s degree in Management in China and his MBA degree in the U.S. For over a decade, Jason has worked in the field of international education, with an emphasis on promoting Asian-American cooperation. He is passionate about setting up exchange programs and creating opportunities for students from both the West and the East to build relationships and see the world from a new perspective. Jason joined SPIRAL in 2014.
Lauren Chapman has lived in Vermont since 1986. She received a bachelor’s degree in Journalism/Political Science from the University of Massachusetts and a master’s degree in Education from Saint Michael’s College. Prior to joining SPIRAL International, she worked as an educator in Vermont public schools for 20 years. Lauren loves to travel and learn about different cultures.
Sydney Estey-Dedell received her BA from The University of North Carolina at Greensboro. She has worked as a teacher and curriculum developer with Chinese students for over ten years. Before coming to SPIRAL, she taught at a high school in Sichuan, China, and helped prepare students to continue their studies in the United States. She has been both a student of Chinese and a teacher of English, and has a passion for language learning and cross-cultural education.
Nan (Mark) Wang was born and grew up in Chongqing in southwest China. He received a bachelor’s degree in English from Sichuan International Studies University in China. Prior to joining SPIRAL International, he has been working in the domain of Chinese-American cultural and educational exchange for over ten years, and is very interested in creating exchange programs between the two countries. Mark loves to travel and learn about different cultures. He joined the staff of SPIRAL in 2022.
LongJing Chu is linguistic researcher and educator in the area of second language acquisition (SLA). She received her Bachelor of Science in Linguistics from the University of Nice-Sophie-Antipolis (France) in 2018 and now is a master’s degree student in Linguistics at the University of Montréal (Canada). LongJing’s area of study is Chinese syntax, language acquisition and learning, and universal grammar. As our lead teacher for the Have Fun with Chinese program, she is equipped with the professional language knowledge and teaching methods to guarantee a high-quality language learning class.