Who We Are
The CITYterm team is an eclectic mix of collaborative educators from a variety of backgrounds and disciplines. Each faculty member joined CITYterm because they are fascinated by experience-based learning, living in a tight-knit community, and New York City. CITYterm affords each faculty member the opportunity to teach in a creative, transformative environment and to learn alongside students.
Click below for faculty contact info and bios!
Isabelle is CITYterm’s French teacher. A French native, Isabelle worked as a French teacher at The Brearley School in the Middle School and Upper School, teaching 5th, 6th, 7th and 10th grades. She also taught at the Upper School of Horace Mann School, teaching 9th through 12th Grade. Isabelle received her B.A. in Teaching French as a foreign language and her M.A. in American Literature from Institut d'Anglais Charles V, Université de Paris VII, France. Outside the classroom, Isabelle enjoys spending time with her son and being a part of the New York City art scene.
Jayde Bennett joins CITYterm as the Dean of Residential Life. A graduate of Kent School and Colby College, Jayde was most recently at Prep for Prep, a non-profit organization that offers students of color access to a private independent school education. Prior to that, she served as an Associate Director of Admissions at her Alma mater while coaching soccer, basketball and lacrosse, serving as a dorm parent and student club advisor. Currently, she is pursuing her Masters Degree in Higher and Postsecondary Education at Teachers College, Columbia University. Jayde is excited to be with us and looks forward to shaping student experiences on and off campus.
Manyata is CITYterms’s Program Coordinator. Manyata grew up in Northern New Jersey and graduated from The Hill School in Pottstown, Pennsylvania. She is a recent graduate of Wesleyan University in Middletown, Connecticut where she studied Psychology and The Study of Education. Her main interests include looking at the impacts of social media influence, learning about past and present medical advances, and browsing YouTube. She often spends her summers working with children in an enrichment capacity. Manyata is thrilled to be a part of the CITYterm team and is excited to explore New York City with students.
Phone: (914) 479-6502
CITYterm Director Cotter Donnell developed a passion for experiential learning as a student on an Outward Bound course during college, and he has worked to incorporate it into his work as a teacher and administrator in independent schools over the last seventeen years. Inspired by CITYterm’s Teaching for Experience summer workshop for educators, Cotter helped to design a place-based interdisciplinary program on his native Los Angeles at Polytechnic School in California before transitioning to New York to be CITYterm’s new director. Cotter has an undergraduate degree from Boston College and master’s degrees in Educational Leadership from the Klingenstein Center at Teachers College, Columbia University and English from the Bread Loaf School of English at Middlebury College. Cotter lives on campus with his family.
Phone: (914) 479-6571
Sara is the Admission Associate at CITYterm. Sara attended Shady Side Academy in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and is a CITYterm alumna (Spring 2013). She is a recent graduate of Wesleyan University, where she studied Sociology and Applied Data Analysis. Outside of the classroom, she participated in a variety of extracurricular activities that focused on the topics of college access, educational inequality, and STEM curriculum development. In her free time, she enjoys running, reading memoirs written by strong women, listening to podcasts about true crime and the sociology of sports, and exploring New York City. Sara currently lives in Brooklyn and is so excited to be returning to CITYterm as a faculty member!
Jennifer Hughes is CITYterm’s Spanish Teacher. A native of Chile, she has enjoyed teaching Spanish, French, and Italian at public and independent schools for seventeen years. This will be Jennifer’s third year teaching at CITYterm. Jennifer's passion for languages began at a young age, studying English in grade school, French in middle school, and Italian in college in Italy. She also studied in France and Switzerland. Her three children are bilingual. She enjoys assisting foreign students, riding her bicycle, and walking her sweet dog, Princess.
This will be Jason’s eleventh year as a member of the faculty and residential team. He lives in the dorm with his wife, Mary Ryan. Jason attended Concord Academy and is a CITYterm alumnus (Fall 2000). Jason earned a B.A. studying history at Davidson College and spent semesters abroad at the University of Edinburgh, and the University of Cape Town. After graduation, he joined Teach For America and was placed at the Sisulu-Walker Charter School of Harlem. Jason spent two years teaching elementary school while also earning a M.S. in Education from Bank Street College of Education. Jason also has earned a M.S. in Environmental Policy and Sustainability Management from the New School for Public Engagement.
Phone: (914) 479-6652
Erik Johnke is the Associate Director of Studies at CITYterm. In addition, he teaches Math and is part of the Urban Core faculty. Erik has been a member of the CITYterm faculty for the past fourteen years. He received a B.A. from Haverford College and completed an MFA in Creative Writing from Goddard College. He served as both the Math and Theater Department Chairs at The Solebury School, and taught at The Pennington School and at Friends School in New Jersey. Additionally, Erik has written about a dozen plays and musicals. His musicals “God’s Country” and “Play Like a Winner” were performed at the New York Musical Theater Festival.
Phone: (914) 479-6501
Eva Seligman is an Urban Core teacher at CITYterm. She is also a member of the residential team. Eva earned a B.A. with a double major in Religion and Gender Studies at Oberlin College. After graduation, she taught high school in Romania for two years as a Peace Corps Volunteer. Eva has a Masters in the Art of Teaching from Bard College and spent three years teaching writing and history at the Bedford Stuyvesant Collegiate Charter School in Brooklyn. She is deeply excited to share her profound love of New York City history and culture. When she is not teaching, Eva can usually be found with her nose in a book, on a yoga mat, or trying to spark an impromptu dance party.
Phone: (914) 479-6509
Trinity Thompson is an Urban Core teacher at CITYterm, and proudly hails from Honolulu, Hawaii. Trinity holds B.A in English (Creative Writing), a B.A. in Comparative Studies in Race and Ethnicity, and a M.A. in Sociology from Stanford University. She also earned a M.S. in General and Special Education from the Progressive Education Institute, Touro College. Prior to joining CITYterm, she taught elementary and middle school at Harlem Village Academies, where she developed inquiry-based lessons and led the Cultural Competency Committee. Outside of teaching, Trinity serves on the board of Stanford’s NY Black Alumni Network leading Early College Readiness work and co-leads Teach For America’s Black Affinity Group. In her free time, she can usually be found watching film or eating sweets.
Rachel Waldman is a Math Teacher at CITYterm. She recently graduated from Williams College in Massachusetts where she majored in Anthropology and Chemistry. She is from the Washington D.C. area and attended The Maret School. She spent a semester studying abroad in Indonesia, and she wrote her senior thesis on American summer camps. You can find her dancing, running, and listening to podcasts. She is so excited for CITYterm!