Travis Wharton (click to email)
Principal
Reading:    Between the World and Me, Ta-Nehisi Coates
Quotable:    For sleep, riches and health to be truly enjoyed, they must be interrupted. - Johann Paul Friedrich Richter
Background:    I'm a native Greenvillian and graduate of Claflin University and Clemson University. I enjoyed the earliest period of my career in music education. The last 4 years have been within school administration. I'm a saxophonist and lover of books!
Me:    My life has been an adventure – and I would not have it any other way.
Coffee shop order:    Starbucks Oprah Chai Latte (all milk, no water)

 

Corrie Morris (click to email)
Professional School Counselor
Reading:    Hannah Coulter, Wendell Berry
Quotable:    “We cannot selectively numb emotions, when we numb the painful emotions, we also numb the positive emotions.”  –Brené Brown
Background:    I am one of seven kids and I am from Myrtle Beach. I went to Columbia International University for undergrad and then Clemson University for graduate school. This is my second full year as a school counselor. 
Me:    A blonde female who is on the shorter side of height. I do not like cold water, bananas, meatloaf, cold weather or scary movies. I like my husband, the outdoors, tacos, learning new things, and good conversation.
Coffee shop order:    Anything decaf. Daily order: decaf pour over with cream. Something sweet: decaf mocha. 

Christie Smith (click to email)
SPED Pro | Academic Strategist
Reading:    Depraved Heart, Patricia Cornwell
Quotable:    "The best preparation for tomorrow is doing your best today." –H. Jackson Brown, Jr.
Background:    Georgia State University Art Education; Furman University Special Education
Me:    Animal and nature lover to the extreme! The best time of life is the one you embrace today—what a gift!
Coffee shop order:    Double tall nonfat latte

Lauren Barth (click to email)
History Pro
Reading:    Breakfast at Tiffany's, Truman Capote
Quotable:    “To live is the rarest thing in the world. Most people exist, that is all.” –Oscar Wilde
Background:    Southern native from Augusta, Georgia. Lover of books, stories, history, music, and art. 
Me:    Eternal optimist
Coffee shop order:    Americano! or a latte with skim milk

Jenny McGrady (click to email)
Foreign Language Coordinator (Chinese, German, Spanish & French!)
Reading:    Promoting Student Happiness, Shannon M. Suldo
Quotable:    "We shall never know all the good that a simple smile can do."  –Mother Teresa
Background:    A very eclectic background in corporate, finance, technology, languages, higher education, private and public schools.
Me:    I'm a lifelong learner- gotta keep that spark going!  I love kids, teaching, global mindsets, languages & internationalism. And chocolate 😁
Coffee shop order:    Coffee with cream no sugar or Maracuja (Passion Fruit Juice)

Ken Morrill (click to email)
Art and Design Pro | Impact Coordinator
Reading:    Armada, Ernest Cline (I LOVED Ready Player One!)
Quotable:    "The place to improve the world is first in one's own heart and head and hands." –Robert M. Pirsig
Background:    8 years as a classroom goofball/teacherator of art and design in middle schools. I was awarded a B.S. in B.S... I mean Liberal Arts from Winthrop University.
Me:    I'm a geek out of passion, not fad. A yankee by birth and dual citizenship (Northern/Southern) by the grace of God and my wife.
Coffee shop order:    I love tea! I really like unsweet (or 1/4 cut) MickyD's tea with two slices of lemon. I ain't no kind o' fancy.

Nora Bartringer (click to email)
Adjunct French Pro    
Reading:    Last Night in Twisted River, John Irving; Until I find You, John Irving; Le Rivage des Syrtes, Julien Gracq
Quotable:    "The superfluous, a very necessary thing" –Voltaire
Background:    I was a French teacher for 14 years in France, and then high school principal for 3 years before moving to Greenville one year ago. 
Me:    I am the tall French Pro at NEXT High School! I am always curious to learn, and I like new challenges! I also like to experiment with new ways of teaching to match students' needs.
Coffee shop order:    A smoothie with strawberry, watermelon and pineapple

Cathy Kamieniecki (click to email)
Science Pro (Biology)
Reading:    Blindspot: Hidden Biases of Good People,  Mahzarin R. Banaji
Quotable:    "Never be afraid to raise your voice for honesty and truth and compassion against injustice and lying and greed. If people all over the world...would do this, it would change the earth." –William Faulkner
Background:    B.S. in Biology from USC Columbia, M.T. in Secondary Science Education from USC Columbia  I taught at Greenville High School and at Boiling Springs Middle School.  I am an amateur nature photographer and love doing home improvement projects. My favorite holiday is "Shark Week," and my dog (Lissie) has won several awards for competitive obedience.
Me:    Inquisitive, organized, goofy at times, hardworking, fun-loving, feisty, adventurous, patient, passionate, nature lover
Coffee shop order:    Nonfat latte with one pump of vanilla

Candace Morris (click to email)
Community Manager
Reading:    BBC News; Captivating, John & Stasi Eldredge
Quotable:    "I am a dreamer who dreams, sees visions, and listens always to the still small voice. I am the trailblazer." –George Washington Carver
Background:    LBSW with 6 six years experience working with individuals with special needs and non-profits. Singer and photographer by night. Passionate about serving the underprivileged and being an advocate for the voiceless. 
Me:    I desire to build meaningful, lasting, and impactful relationships with those around me. I’m uncommon to the core and up for any adventure.
Coffee shop order:    Tea Latte (any black tea, chai, or green)

Josh Neuer (click to email)
Professional Counselor, LPC-I
Reading:    The Power of a Positive No, William Ury; People Over Profit, Dale Partridge
Quotable:    "Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter." –Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
Background:    For over a decade I taught, managed students, and supported families as an educator and director.  Since then I have completed my masters in Professional Counseling.  Each day I have the opportunity to contribute to the well being of adolescents, couples, and families as a licensed counselor. 
Me:    I want to stimulate a hope for living and enrich individuals and families with sound counsel by relating, inspiring, and serving.
Coffee shop order:    Coffee, a nutritious smoothie, or a chai latte!

Jordan Jacobssen (click to email)
Impact Coordinator
Reading:    Dead Wake: The Last Crossing of the Lusitania, Erik Larson
Quotable:    "Great things are done by a series of small things brought together." –Vincent Van Gogh
Background:    Clemson graduate, science teacher turned seeker of all things impact
Me:    I live to learn, explore, and create. I love meeting new people, spending time outdoors, and going on adventures. 
Coffee shop order:    Americano!

Harrison Brookie (click to email)
History & Improv Pro
Reading:    Crazy Busy, Kevin DeYoung
Quotable:    "Double check your online sources" –Abraham Lincoln
Background:    With a decade of public school and improvisation experience.
Me:    NEXT social studies pro by day. Alchemy improv theater owner by night. Husband/dad in between.
Coffee shop order:    I want to say black coffee. I should say caramel latte extra whip.

Katie Hittinger (click to email)
Science Pro
Reading: A History of the World in 6 Glasses, Tom Standage
Quotable:    "The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams" –Eleanor Roosevelt
Background:    I have a background in Analytical and Physical Chemistry and received my B.S. in Chemistry from Western Carolina University and M.A.T. from Clemson in Secondary Science. I taught Chemistry at Chapman High previously to coming to Next High School. I enjoy hiking and being outdoors with my husband, my toddler, and our dog.  If we aren’t hiking, I am busy trying to develop a green thumb and grown as many flowers as possible around my house. 
Me:    I am grateful and thankful to live a happy, beautiful life surrounded by my husband, son, and dog. I love the great outdoors, good music, good food and crossfit.
Coffee shop order:    Iced Coffee in the summer, a latte when it's cold!

Chris Beyerle (click to email)
Math Pro
Reading:    Start With Why, Simon Sinek; Cultivating Curiosity, Wendy L. Ostroff; Twitter feeds!
Quotable:    "Never, Never, Never Give Up!" –Winston Churchill
Background:    I was born in San Jose, CA. I graduated from USC Upstate with BS in Secondary Education Mathematics, MA in Technology in Education from Lesley University. 11 years teaching Math, 4 years teaching Engineering, 2 years as PBL Instructional Coach. Math Adjunct Professor at Greenville Tech. Roper Mountain Summer Camp Instructor, and current GCCTM President.
Me:    Learner, Dad, Math Jedi, Tech Enthusiast, Design Thinker, Social Media Guru, Trail Hiker, Dog lover, Photographer, Re-Imaginer of Education
Coffee shop order:    Colossal coffee with some cream and sugar.

Sarah Davis (click to email)
Math Pro
Reading:    The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
Quotable:    "Courage is not simply one of the virtues, but the form of every virtue at the testing point." –C.S. Lewis
Background:    This is my first year at NEXT, and my 13th as a math pro. Columbia is my hometown, but I fell in love with Greenville when I moved here with my husband Jerry in 2009. 
Me:    Wife, daughter, sister. Aunt to 16 amazing kids. Media junkie. Movie fanatic. Taco connoisseur. Voracious learner. Numeracy advocate.
Coffee shop order:    Light roast coffee, black

Brooke Belfield (click to email)
English Pro
Reading:    Mindset, Carol Dweck; Everyday I Fight, Stuart Scott
Quotable:    "The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams." –Eleanor Roosevelt  
Background:    I have been teaching English for the past 12 years.  As a travel enthusiast, I have lived in Maryland, West Virginia, Florida, and now South Carolina.
Me:    I am a social butterfly who loves working and playing equally and lives life through books, running, teaching, and adventures. 
Coffee shop order:    Vanilla Latte

Rudo Sibande (click to email)
Assistant Community Manager | Adjunct French Pro
Reading:    1Q84, Haruki Murakami; Questions for Ada, Ijeoma Umebinyuo
Quotable:    "Fair play to those who dare to dream!" –Markéta Irglová, 80th Academy Awards
Background:    The Third Culture Kid becomes a Third Culture Adult. My family hails from Zambia and Zimbabwe, yet I spent a good deal of time in the American South while growing up. I'm a little mix of everything, but totally myself, and I can't wait to continue learning more about everyone else! 😃
Me:    Two roads diverged in a yellow wood, and one led to the stream that you can't force a horse to drink from.
Coffee shop order:    Triple iced espresso with cream, honey and one raw sugar. Or a green tea 😁

Valerie Martin (click to email)
Academic Strategist/ SPED Coordinator
Reading:    The Man who Made Vermeers, Jonathan Lopez;  Transforming Schools, Bob Lenz & Justin Wells
Quotable:    "The object...is not to do extraordinary things, but to do ordinary things in an extraordinary way." –Dean Stanley
Background:    I have taught in both private and public schools for the past 22 years, specializing in helping students with Executive Functioning and Learning Disabilities.
Me:    I am a lifelong learner, always researching and reading a variety of content that is personal to me and my profession. I look forward to this new school year to see returning smiles and meeting new students to see how we can help them develop ways that are personal to them on making an impact now rather than having to wait until after graduation.
Coffee shop order:   Tall Peppermint Mocha, Kambucha,  or tea

Susanne Wiedemann (click to email)
Director of Student Records
Reading:    What Alice Forgot, Liane Moriarty
Quotable:    "When in doubt, do something...We are never so alive as when we concern ourselves with other people."  –Harry Chapin
Background:    Grew up Illinois, Greenville and New Jersey.  Administrative Manager in fashion industry and Social Worker in schools. Lover of the arts, innovative education and NYC!
Me:    My life is centered on family and friends—and finding joy in the most unexpected places.
Coffee shop order:    Caramel Macchiato with coconut milk!

Ethan Perkins (click to email)
Technologies and Facilities Coordinator
Reading:    Walt Disney, Neal Gabler; The Progress City Primer, Michael Crawford; One Way Love, Tullian Tchividjian; The Hobbit, JRR Tolkien
Quotable:    "It's kind of fun to do the impossible." –Walt Disney
Background:    I grew up in the south but never felt southern. I've always been interested in all things technology, especially film making. I spent most of my career working with youth (infants - college). I love working with a team and I love to see kids find their passion. 
Me:    Husband & father of 4! I'm obsessed with all Disney Parks, Disney Movies, Disney Collectables and Walt Disney (basically all things Disney)
Coffee shop order:    Black coffee

Mauricio Garcia (click to email)
Mathematics Pro
Reading:    One Hundred Years of Solitude, Gabriel Garcia Marquez
Quotable:   "Education is the most powerful weapon, which you can use to change the world" –Nelson Mandela
Background:   I was born in Colombia, South America. I have a B.S. in Sanitary Engineering and a M. S. in Environmental Management. I have been involved in some sort of education environment for the last 24 years of my life, most of them at a college level.
I arrived to Greenville in 2010 with my wife Norma and our daughters Valeria and Natalie.
Me:   Quiet, thinker, organized, family oriented, passionate for outdoor activities. Place: The Mountains. Hobby: Fishing. Sport: Soccer.  
Coffee shop order: A cup of authentic Colombian Coffee.

 

John Cochran (click to email)
English Pro
Reading:    All the Light we Cannot See, Anthony Doerr
Quotable:    "The whole purpose of education is to turn mirrors into windows." –S. J. Harris
Background:    I grew up here and have done about 1000 things. 
Me:    I like people, books, places, adventure, peace, and learning. Not necessarily in that order.
Coffee shop order:    black coffee, hot or iced or sweet or not or with cream or without.

Rosemary Gray (click to email)
Adjunct Art Pro
Reading:    The Queen of the Tearling, Erika Johansen
Quotable:    "Treat yo self!" –Donna and Tom, Parks and Recreation
Background:    Studio Artist from Converse College, and I have been making pretty things ever since. 
Me:    See the good.
Coffee shop order:    I like a cappuccino, with a half shot of hazelnut flavor :)

Yang Yin (click to email)
Mandarin Chinese Pro
Reading:    Gifted Hands, Ben Carson and Cecil Murphey
Quotable:    "A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity; an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty." –Winston Churchill
Background:    Female parent of a three-person family; master's degree in education; from Nanjing, China
Me:    Everyone except my hubby thinks I am easy-going, 😜 and most think I am smart (except my mathematic teachers!)
Coffee shop order:    Chinese Green Tea, Coffee, Water


NEXT School Network

NEXT High School is part of a network of campuses that includes NEXT School Eagle Ridge in Salem, SC. The following Pros serve to build and support both campuses.

Zachary Eikenberry (click to email)
Founding CEO
Reading:    The Fountainhead, Ayn Rand
Quotable:    “Merely having an open mind is nothing. The object of opening the mind, as of opening the mouth, is to shut it again on something solid.” –GK Chesterton
Background:    I am from a Midwest farming family, studied liberal arts, started multiple businesses, and discovered the joy of building a school. 
Me:    I am simply a person who doesn't know he can't. 
Coffee shop order:    Grande No Water Soy Chai Latte

Rose Torres (click to email)
Chief Support Officer
Reading:    Off Season & The Girl Next Door, Jack Ketchum; The Fireman, Joe Hill; Downtown Owl, Chuck Klosterman
Quotable:    "It takes smart choices and dumb luck" –Watsky
Background:    I've been working with The NEXT School since March of 2015. I received my undergraduate degree in 2009. I love startups; proud to be part of an awesome startup school!
Me:    Hard-working, sincere, and kind. Must be outside daily. Lover of animals, books, ideas, exercise, heat & humidity. Quiet and outspoken. 
Coffee shop order:   Chicco di un caffè

Anthony Thomas (click to email)
Director of Finance and Operations
Reading:  Steve Jobs, Walter Isaacson; Compassion, Henri Nouwen
Quotable:  "I've learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel."  –Maya Angelou
Background:  Second Stage Entrepreneur who complements the Visionary/Marketing Entrepreneur, using senior management organizational development experience in capital markets, small business, nonprofit, franchising and most recently higher education.
Me: I love helping and encouraging others to be their best, albeit with a sense of urgency that appears at times as being impatient.
Coffee shop order:  Tall blonde pour-over with room

Letter to Families

Nathan Robinson (click to email; Set up a meeting)
Chief Program Officer
Reading:    Brain Rules, John Medina; The Girl With All the Gifts, M.R. Carey
Quotable:    "Sapere Aude (Dare to know; dare to be wise)" –Horace
Background:    I've taught English Literature, Creative Writing, Digital Media, and Technology in high school as well as K–8 before showing up to build at NEXT High School in 2015. I call Greenville home, and share it with my wife and 2 daughters.
Me:    Coffee-infused builder, thinker, writer, poet, dad, designer, & husband; here to add value wherever I can; made to make an impact.
Coffee shop order:    Tall black coffee / Tall double breve latte