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People: University Alumni

Students |  Faculty |  Teaching Assistants

Far and away the most important contributor to the program's academic success was the incredible dedication, sense of community, and diversity of talent and experience among the two score people who spent a year in a basement teaching and learning together.

Hey, you lovely people - submit your bios already!

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Doug Anderson
Ellensburg, WA
Blake Asdorian
Chicago, IL

I am a native of Silver Spring, MD. I hold a B.A. in Physics from Rutgers University, with a minor in Classics. During my undergraduate years, I worked in the atmospheric physics division at the Naval Research Laboratory. Since then I have worked in the biochemistry teaching lab at the University of Chicago. In the past I have been a performing musician, playing in various clubs around the D.C. area. Presently my interest has shifted back to languages, and I am most interested in learning Spanish at the moment.

Andrew Bangert
Bloomington, IN

I'm in Cambridge, MA. I'm looking for a job (here or elsewhere) as one of the following:

  • information technology researcher
  • software developer
  • system administrator
  • technical writer
  • web developer or designer (short-term)

Check out my resume.

I want to build intelligent systems for information access, sharing, and manipulation. I'm interested in information visualization, interface design, HCI, knowledge modeling, digital libraries, collaborations, intelligent systems, software agents, and information filters, among other things.

Michael Carpenter
Waltham, MA
Donna Carr
Wellesley, MA

Donna was born and raised in Wellesley, Massachusetts. However, she decided to get away from it all and attended college in Washington, D.C., Munich, Germany, and finally graduated with a B.A. in Germanic Studies from Boston College. She liked B.C. so much that she decided to stay there and get a Master's in Linguistics. While studying for her M.A., she was granted a Fulbright Fellowship to Austria where she studied at Klagenfurt University and taught EFL at a local college preparatory school. Donna has worked in the Boston area as an ESL teacher, a translator and a ballroom dance instructor. For the last two years she has been employed as the Academic Coordinator of International Programming at the Boston Kaplan Center. Her hobbies include skiing, (and now shredding), hiking, biking, gardening (when she has time), and of course, languages.

Christopher Crick
Medford, MA

After growing up in Oregon and studying Medieval history at Harvard, Chris bounced around Europe and the Pacific Northwest for a while chasing terrorists and whales, respectively. ADU returned him to that happy state of brilliant conviviality known as being a student, and taught him cool stuff, too. Chris is now dividing his time between New York City and Boston, working with Voxiva to bring communications technology to developing countries.

Gary Dmytryk
Cambridge, MA

Gary Dmytryk comes to ADUni with a background in cultural anthropology and psychology. He attended Dartmouth so he could ski a lot, and, after starting as a math major, he graduated with an interdisciplinary philosophy major. Next, he made the mistake of going to graduate school. While a student of anthropology and African Studies at Stanford, two separate dissertation projects had to be cancelled because of the interference of two civil wars. Nonetheless, he completed his master's degree in anthropology and also trained in clinical psychology while waiting for the research visas from Africa that never arrived. Some years later, though, he managed to con a California foundation out of a lot of money so he could do some ethnographic research, this time in peaceful and beautiful northern Thailand. Upon returning stateside, he has been doing clinical work with Southeast Asian refugees, and has worked for human rights in Burma. His inner child, however, is a math nerd, and has led Gary to enroll here, just down the street from his home in Cambridge.

Bryon Gill
Pittsburgh, PA

Bryon originally hails from Erie, Pennsylvania, but has lived in Pittsburgh for the last ten years or so. He graduated from the University of Pittsburgh with Bachelors in Philosophy. Bryon participated in policy debate throughout his academic career, finishing with a top 25 performance at the 1996 National Debate Tournament. His band, the Bryon Gill Trio (, will meet an untimely end when he travels to Boston. Bryon's other interests include politics, writing, and retro board games.

Andrew Hall
Newton, MA

Born in Ohio and raised in Texas, I graduated from Plano Senior High School and moved on to Michigan State University where I studied Mechanical Engineering. I considered switching majors twice, once to forestry, and the second time to linguistics. However, when confronted with the statistics about job availability in the respective fields (along with various brainwashing sessions by advisors, administrators, and faculty), I was convinced to stay the course and after graduation took a job working as a product engineer for a defense contractor in Redondo Beach, CA. I worked there less than a year before being downsized; the company never landed the contract they had hired me, and several other fresh faced engineers, to work on. Rather than continuing in such a volatile industry, I took a job with a software company in Waltham, MA. For the last two and a half years, I have worked in product definition, where I gather requirements from the various customers (including my former employer) to primarily write specifications on new software functionality. Meanwhile, I have been taking classes at Harvard Extension with the goal of a Masters in Linguistics. It is towards this interest that I plan to apply my education at Arsdigita.

Peter Hayashi
Boston, MA
Therese Hendricks
Boston, MA

Since graduating from high school in 1974, Therese has obtained B.S. degrees in Electrical Engineering and Materials Science, and a J.D.(law) degree. Therese is now a partner practicing intellectual property law with a Boston law firm. A native of Chicago, Therese spent five years in New York city before moving to Boston.

Her leisure interests include the visual arts -- particulaly ceramics and painting. She is a pianist, studying with classical pianist Tatyana Dudochkin, of the New England Conservatory.

Therese has two children, John(13) and Meg(11), and lives in the Back Bay with her children and spouse, Larry.

Therese's law practice is primarily patent prosecution and litigation for small to mid-size businesses. She makes oral arguments in and tries cases before the Federal Courts on behalf of her clients, in addition to pursuing IP protection for her clients.

Tom Hickerson
Austin, TX

Tom Hickerson was born and raised in Texas, but he only recently came back to the US from working four years in Russia and Ukraine as a government contractor for the US Information Agency. He graduated in 1994 with a BA in Russian Language and Literature from the University of Texas in Austin. Other educational institutions attended include Bard College in New York state and the Herzen Pedagogical Institute in St. Petersburg, Russia. His brushes with celebrity have included having lunch with Michael Dell, riding in an elevator with Spike Lee, and shaking the hand of Ethan Hawke.

Andrew Kinnie
Watertown, New York

I was born and raised in Watertown, New York. I graduated from High School in 1982, and then received my undergrad Bachelors in History (honours - Canadian Spelling) from Queen's university in 1986. After Queen's I attended a French language and Civilization program at the Sorbonne in Paris, France.

From 1986-1988 I attended the Royal Military College of Canada, as the first American civilian to be admitted into their "War Studies" Master's degree program, receiving my degree in 1991. In 1990, I entered Law School at Albany Law School of Union University, Albany,New York. Since graduation in 1993, I was admitted to the bar and have been practicing Law in Watertown, New York as a partner in the Kinnie Law Firm. From 1988 -1996 I was involved in retail sales of Computers and software,and from 1991- 1996 I had a small computer consulting business as an additional business interest.

I have been involved in and fascinated by computers since 1989. This program offers me the opportunity to build upon my fascination with computers, and get a top quality education with the focus and depth I have always desired.

Samuel J. Klein
Burlington, VT
Erica Klempner
Cambridge, MA
Anthony Lim
Boston, MA

Anthony Lim graduated Phi Beta Kappa from Stanford University in 1998 with a degree in Human Biology. He spent the following year studying Mandarin intensively at Qinghua University in Beijing, fulfilling his lifelong personal dream to learn his native language. Upon returning to the U.S. after his year abroad, Anthony began working in Boston as a management consultant for Bain & Company. His work on a number of healthcare-related cases emphasized the critical role that the Internet and computer technology will increasingly play in the health care sector. Inspired to gain a thorough understanding of computer science prior to pursuing a career in medicine, he will spend this next year attending ArsDigita University. Originally from San Diego, CA, Anthony currently lives with his older brother and sister-in-law in Brookline, MA. His interests include tennis, reading, dancing, and hiking.

Kevin McCulloch
San Francisco, CA

Kevin McCulloch, 28, grew up in Atlanta, Georgia and has a BA in Religion from Haverford College ( He moved to San Francisco in 1994 and took a job with the Family Violence Prevention Fund (, working on projects to enhance health care and judicial responses to domestic violence. Since 1998 he has been a freelance database consultant and Visual Basic programmer. His most recent client was (now owned by Kevin is a life-long Unitarian Universalist ( and a member of the Steering Committee of the UU young adult network ( He studies figure drawing and enjoys music, especially jazz.

Rob Monn
New York, NY

Hello I'm Rob Monn. Right now I live in Manhattan with my lovely wife and work at the New York Times, but I'm a soon to be student of ArsDigita University's first class. I'm interested in about four thousand things, but my short attention span seems to spend most of its time focusing on writing (poetry), audio (space jazz, stereolab, radio and electronic audio) and computing (linux/bsd/macintosh).

Greg Oehler
Medford, MA

Originally from Salinas, CA, Greg Oehler moved to the Boston area in September of 1995 to attend Tufts University. In the fall of 1996 he also began studies at New England Conservatory of Music. Greg graduated in May 2000 with a Bachelor of Arts in philosophy from Tufts and a Bachelor of Music in jazz composition from NEC. His hobbies include playing jazz guitar, listening to and analyzing music, collecting and reading books, and practicing kung fu.

Seth Plough
Worcester (Springfield?), MA

A native of Rochester, NY who has now done time in Virginia, North Dakota, Michigan, and Massachusetts. Seth graduated from the University of Richmond with a B.S. in Biology and a B.A. in Political Science. He quickly came to the realization that the real money was in sponging off his parents and girlfriend while pursuing a life rich in computer games and java code. As the pool of gamers who can give him a decent challange dwindles, Seth prepares to tackle new challanges at Snowtide Informatic Systems.

Tony Pryor
Scotts Valley, CA

Tony Pryor was raised in Southern California, the son of two beautiful, talented aerospace nerds. Professionally speaking, he's been a student, an antique dealer, a teacher, and a programmer. He's interested in the nature of creativity, and dreams of an effort to extend it through intelligent distributed agents that will be able to pattern match new strains of meaning within creative or innovative works in quantifiable media, the anticipated result being to leave all forms of writer's block weeping in the dust. He believes we are headed for hyperintellgence, and thinks ai should be allowed to own land.

Jeffrey Radcliffe
Houston, TX

Jeffrey has spent the past few years as a graduate student in music composition at the University of Oregon, Eugene, and holds an undergraduate degree in composition and performance from DePauw University in Greencatle, IN. In the past few years, he has been a graduate teaching fellow in music theory and Balinese gamelan, the principal horn of the University Symphony Orchestra, commissioned to write a new work for the Eugene Symphony Orchestra, and learning to write triple invertible counterpoint (among other things). Before moving away from the Cascades, Jeffrey finished a job as Music Director for the University Theater's production of Charles Dickens's 'Nicholas Nickelby,' writing and performing the score. Jeffrey is interested in Ancient and Medieval History, languages, online gaming, literature and a number of numbingly tedious other things.

Neil Rankin
Worcester, MA

I have an engineering degree from Cornell University and a PH.D in psychology from U. C. Berkeley. For the past 20 years I have been teaching psychology, doing research on the perception of objects that take on distinct multiple appearances and writing on the logic of data analysis in behavioral research. I am excited about the possibility of becoming a pioneer in Web-based learning, which I see as the new frontier in education, through my involvement with ArsDigita.

Joseph Rizzo
Drexel Hill, PA

Joe is Joe.

Michael Sisolak
New York, NY

Michael Sisolak was born and raised on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C. by parents who were not politicians. Bitten by the theater bug at a young age, he moved to New York City to attend New York University's Tisch School of the Arts Undergraduate Drama program as a technical theater major. Since graduating from NYU Michael has remained in New York as a theatrical stage manager working both on and off-Broadway (recent shows include "Uncle Vanya", "The Rainmaker", and "1776"). Having always done computer work on the side to pay the bills between shows, Michael is looking forward to taking part in ArsDigita University's maiden voyage.

Todd Sjoblom
Brookline, MA

Todd was born in Seattle. His last name is pronounced Show-blum. Todd loves languages, and learning (especially science) and got a Ph.D. in linguistics from MIT in 1980. He has worked with computers before and after college, having taught himself the subjects he needed. But this knowledge is not equally deep and well-rounded, and he feels a year at Ars Digita is a great idea.

Sharon Stern
Ashland, OR
Edward Valitutto
Baltimore, MD

For most of the past six years I have been studying mathematics, first attending Alfred University and then doing two years of graduate study at Johns Hopkins University. I spent the summer between schools working for the Forest Service in Santa Fe National Forest. I am happy to be back in New England where I can get to the White Mountains for hiking.

Heather Van Aelst
State College, PA

I came to ADUni directly after escaping Oberlin College with an English degree. Now I'm serving as webmaster and running while searching for a job.

Chris Walker
Portland, OR
Geoff Ward
Cambridge, MA
John West
New York, NY

I come to Ars Digita from journalism where I was a correspondent for Reuters news agency, where I covered two wars and three continents in six years before leaving to start a news agency, Out There News, with other Reuters colleagues which runs a network of 40 correspondents around the world.

Why move from reporting from the front line to sitting at a desk learning to write code? Because the Internet makes it possible not just to provide bits of information, but whole information systems. To me, creating Web based information systems is a natural extension of journalism: giving people information they need, in a form they can access. This is something I have witnessed in Kosovo and Africa, and I believe it is only just beginning.

I come from London, England and my first degree was in Classics from Balliol College Oxford.


Mark Dettinger. Recitation instructor for "Algorithms", a course that he has taught at the University of Ulm. Dettinger has a PhD in computer science from University of Ulm.

Alan Frank. Recitation instructor for "Object-oriented Program Design". Frank studied mathematics at Oberlin College and as a graduate student at Brown University. He has worked as a professional programmer for over 20 years, most recently with Dynamic Healthcare Technologies, and is an avid puzzle player.

David Goddeau. Instructor for "Object-oriented Program Design". Goddeau is an alumnus of the MIT Spoken Language Group. Since leaving MIT, he has worked on speech recognition software at Compaq's Cambridge Research Lab and Speechworks.

Philip Greenspun. Instructor for "Software Engineering for Web Applications", a course that he initially developed for MIT and that has subsequently been taught at Caltech, Stanford, Berkeley, University of Massachusetts, and University of Hamburg. Greenspun has a PhD in computer science from MIT.

Tara Holm. Instructor for "Mathematics for Computer Science". Holm has extensive experience as a calculus TA at Dartmouth College and as a graduate student TA at MIT. She is working towards her PhD in mathematics at MIT (June 2001).

Ravi Jasuja ( Instructor for "Database Management Systems".

Tina Kapur. Instructor for "Probabilistic Systems Analysis". Kapur has a PhD in computer science from MIT: Model based three dimensional Medical Image Segmentation. She was a TA at MIT and at Mount Holyoke for Math and Computer Science courses. Kapur has been Chief Scientist at Visualization Technology Inc., an image-guided surgery company, since getting her PhD.

John Pezaris. Instructor for "Structure and Interpretation of Computer Programs". John has taught the full suite of core undergraduate computer science and electrical engineering courses at MIT, and was recognized for his teaching abilities by promotion to Instructor-G while a graduate student at MIT. Pezaris has a master's in computer architecture from MIT and a PhD in computational neuroscience from Caltech. He is currently doing post-doctoral work on artifical eyes at Harvard Medical School.

Gill Pratt. Instructor for "How Computers Work". Gill has been heavily involved in the development and teaching of MIT's core computer architecture subject, 6.004, and is considered one of the best teachers in the Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science. Pratt has a PhD in computer science from MIT. He is currently a principle investigator with the MIT Leg Laboratory.

Luis Rodriguez. Instructor for "Systems". Luis was a popular teacher during his graduate school career at MIT. He was a recitation instructor for 6.001 ("Structure and Interpretation of Computer Programs") and a TA for 6.033 ("Systems"). He also worked at Xerox PARC for a year after completing his S.M. at MIT. Rodriguez has a PhD in computer science from MIT.

Shai Simonson. Instructor for "The Theory of Computation", "Discrete Mathematics", and "Algorithms". From 1991 through 2000 Simonson was a professor in the Department of Mathematics and Computer Science at Stonehill College, where he taught in every area of the CS curriculum. Prior to taking over CS instruction at Stonehill, Simonson was a professor in the EECS department at University of Illinois. He received a BA in mathematics from Columbia University and a PhD in computer science at Northwestern University.

Rajeev Surati. Instructor for "Probabilistic Systems Analysis". Rajeev has extensive experience as a graduate student TA in many core computer science classes at MIT. Surati has a PhD in computer science from MIT.

Patrick Henry Winston. Instructor for "Banzai AI", a field in which he has been a pioneer. Patrick is the author of six undergraduate computer science textbooks, including Artificial Intelligence. Winston is renowned for his teaching of 6.034 at MIT and for his teaching of "How to Speak" during IAP. He is the past president of the American Association for Artificial Intelligence and former director of the MIT Artificial Intelligence Laboratory. Winston has a PhD in computer science from MIT.

Holly Yanco. Instructor for "Structure and Interpretation of Computer Programs". Yanco was the recipient of the Frederick C. Hennie III Teaching Award for her work in teaching this course at MIT while studying for her PhD in computer science (June 2000).

Teaching Assistants

Mike Allen. Head TA.

Zvi Boshernitzan ( TA for "Software Engineering for Web Applications".

Rusty Holleman ( Full-time TA starting with "Object-oriented Program Design".

Samuel Klein Jr. ( TA for "Software Engineering for Web Applications".

Dimitri Kountourogiannis ( Full-time TA for the whole program.

Dan Parker ( TA for "Software Engineering for Web Applications".

Ryan "Rif" Rifkin ( TA for "Mathematics for Computer Science".

Ben Ruedlinger ( TA for "Mathematics for Computer Science".

Site last updated: 10 August 2001