Our Staff

Nomad staff are vibrant, caring, and passionate. With a student:teacher ratio of 8:1, we develop close and trusting relationships with Nomad students—supporting every child’s whole self.

 
 

Founder; Head of SChool

Christie Seyfert

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Christie Seyfert founded Nomad in 2016 afer previously helping to start three schools and teaching in a variety of educational settings—public, private and microschools; traditional, progressive, and tech-based schools; nannying jobs, summer camps, and tutoring programs. Christie combined her favorite parts of many amazing educational models to create Nomad, aiming to strike a balance between experiential, project-based learning and direct academic instruction. Christie was homeschooled for one formative year in elementary school on a roadtrip around the United States. During that year, amazing places became her classroom—Kennedy Space Center, the White House, Indigenous land, Civil Rights sites. That experience created the foundation for Christie’s pedagogical belifes: nothing beats learning through experience, creation, excursion and play. As a superfan of Ms. Frizzle and the Magic School Bus, Nomad is the manifestation of Christie’s longtime dream.

Director of Curriculum; Lead Stem teacher

Lisa Bishop

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Lisa believes that the best learning happens when it's driven by student interest and discovery. For the past 5 years she has been developing and teaching hands-on math courses for elementary and middle school students using math as a window into an interdisciplinary experience delving into biology, cooking, music, architecture, art, history, ocean conservation and more. Lisa herself has always looked for interdisciplinary experiences, studying both math and music in college, receiving a Ph.D. in Applied Math, and completing a post-doc building math models of HIV at UCSF. Lisa's goal is to bring out the unique mathematician and scientist inside every student by finding learning experiences where students actually get to do math and science in the world around them

 

Middle school humanities teacher

Aaron Hermezian

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Aaron’s path to becoming an educator can best be described as circuitous. After receiving his Bachelor of Science degree in Justice Studies, Aaron worked as a social and behavioral mentor for students with autism, a mentor to at-risk youth, and a legal assistant at an immigration law firm. While working with youth, Aaron noticed a reoccuring theme: students believed what they were learning at school did not apply to their experiences outside of the classroom and that the things they were learning did not speak to their individual passions. These experiences prompted him to pursue his Master of Arts in Teaching with a focus on Social Studies. Having grown up in the bustling and diverse city of San Jose, California and the corn-choked flatland of Noblesville, Indiana, Aaron is a strong believer that experience and exposure are critical aspects to learning. Furthermore, Aaron strongly believes that youth, free of the dogma and cynicism that plagues most adults, can be some of the most effective agents of change.

Upper elementary teacher

Anna Gurleyen

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Anna's goal is to help students discover their individual passions and to help students develop the tools they need to pursue those passions. Anna's own passions include education, cooking, and travel (she goes to Turkey every summer). Anna began her education journey as a member of City Year AmeriCorps developing service-learning programs for elementary schools. Anna went on to get her MA in English Language Learner Education and has been a 2nd-grade instructor in San Francisco public schools. At Nomad, Anna is excited to provide upper elementary students with learning experiences that continue Nomad's legacy of progressive education.

 
 

Co-Founder; Health & Wellness coordinator

Taylor Cuffaro

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Taylor, a registered nurse and the long-time partner of a brilliant educator, knows that students (and people) are happiest and healthiest when they're pursuing their passions. Taylor is passionate about community health inside and outside of Nomad. They oversee the wellbeing of Nomad students and staff, organizing mental and physical health education. Taylor also assists with administrative and operational tasks to allow kids to roam the cities in which they live to discover what they love.