Tomer Rothschild

  • Wesleyan University (BA)
  • The Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania (MBA)

Tomer graduated from Wesleyan University with a degree in Philosophy. Later he earned his MBA at the University of Pennsylvania. Before founding ESC he worked on Wall Street and was the China country manager of a publicly traded US company. He is the father of three children, and when he is not carefully reviewing essays he can be found playing with his children.


Meet Tomer Rothschild

Stacy Palestrant

  • Wellesley College (BA )
  • University of Chicago Booth School of Business (MBA)

Stacy is a graduate of Wellesley College, where she studied Religion and Political Science. Several years later she received her MBA from the University of Chicago. Prior to founding ESC she was a research associate at Harvard Business School and a management consultant with Katzenbach Partners. Stacy is grateful that she discovered the world of college counseling upon moving to Beijing. She loves helping students tell their personal stories and learn how to be more compelling writers.

Meet Stacy Palestrant

Colin Lethem

Consultant for Senior Scholars
  • University of Chicago

Colin is a University of Chicago graduate with several years of tutoring experience at both the high-school and college levels. Beginning in high school, Colin volunteered during free periods to help teach students Algebra, and in college he worked as a teaching assistant for the Neighborhood Schools Program (NSP) and the Chicago Academic Achievement Program (CAAP). Colin majored in Mathematics but also enjoys creative writing, philosophy, literature, astronomy and social theory.

EJ Mitchell

Consultant for Senior Scholars
  • Amherst College

A Cincinnati, Ohio, native, EJ is a graduate of Amherst College where he majored in Asian Languages and Civilizations. During his time at Amherst he spent the spring semester of his junior year studying abroad in Beijing, and after graduation he worked in Beijing at a top-ranked American study abroad center. Prior to joining ESC, he also worked as a veteran teaching fellow with Breakthrough Collaborative and as a telementor through the Amherst admissions office. With years of teaching and mentoring experience, EJ brings to ESC a strong passion for international education and cross-cultural management.

Matthew Wu

Consultant for Senior Scholars
  • Bowdoin College

Matthew graduated from Bowdoin College with a degree in Government and Chinese. At Bowdoin, Matthew worked in the Alumni Relations office and as a recruiter for Bowdoin Athletics. He also played soccer and was a member of the varsity track and field team. Matthew continues to enjoy sports and reading philosophy and literature in his spare time. Having always wanted to visit China, Matthew is very excited to be living and working in Beijing.

Alexis Krushell

Consultant for Senior Scholars
  • University of Pennsylvania

Alexis graduated from the University of Pennsylvania with a degree in Philosophy, Politics and Economics. After her freshman year, she volunteered in rural China where her passion for international education began. After graduating, she taught English, Health and Business at an international high school in Chongqing and loved working with Chinese students hoping to study abroad. She is thrilled to continue working with Chinese high-schoolers in a one-on-one setting. In her free time, Alexis enjoys hiking and reading French literature.

Bilal Ajram

Consultant for Senior Scholars
  • University of Chicago

Bilal is a graduate of the University of Chicago, where he studied Chemistry. As an undergraduate, he enjoyed studying different approaches of of science and economics while also mentoring and high-school students and assisting them in applying and being admitted to top-tier universities and colleges. In addition to student mentoring, while at UChicago, Bilal worked on various projects from engineering to healthcare systems consulting. Bilal not only contributes a unique innovative and analytical perspective, but also extensive writing and mentoring experience.

Dorothy Mae Ajayi

Consultant for Senior Scholars, Director of Recruitment & Human Resources
  • Wesleyan University

Dorothy grew up in Cleveland, Ohio, near the shores of Lake Erie. She is a Wesleyan University graduate and double majored in Sociology and Hispanic Literatures and Cultures.  There, she was awarded high honors in her undergraduate Sociology Department Thesis on virtual reality.  Dorothy has a passion for creative writing and enjoys writing poetry and short stories.  She has taught high school students at Columbia University in New York City while working as a summer administrative teaching assistant.  She enjoys playing violin, writing music and improvising new styles!

Elaine Poon

Consultant for Senior Scholars, Consultant for Junior Scholars
  • University of California, Los Angeles

Elaine is a UCLA graduate with a Business Economics major and Entrepreneurship minor. At UCLA, she was Co-President of China Care Bruins, a mentorship program for adoptees from China. During her junior year, she studied abroad in Shanghai and became a student ambassador for the education abroad program for University of California students. During the summers, she worked in Hong Kong as a teaching assistant for Johns Hopkins Center for Talented Youth (CTY). Elaine is extremely excited to continue pursuing her passions in mentorship and education by working with ESC’s exceptional students.

Emily Davidson

Consultant for Senior Scholars
  • Davidson College

Emily is from Houston, Texas, and graduated from Davidson College with a degree in Political Science and East Asian Studies. She spent the fall of her junior year studying abroad in Shanghai, and spent her senior year completing a fellowship in the Office of Admission of this selective U.S. college. Emily has interned with the World Affairs Council of Houston, during which she created resources that enable Texas educators to teach their students about important world issues. Emily is eager to pursue her interest in higher education in China, as well as work with ESC’s brilliant students. In her free time, Emily enjoys reading science fiction and fantasy books and learning new board games.

Hannah Rausch

Consultant for Senior Scholars
  • University of Chicago

Hannah is originally from Rowley, Massachusetts, and graduated from the University of Chicago, where she majored in Asian Languages and Civilizations. She studied abroad in Beijing as an undergraduate in the University of Chicago’s Social Sciences in Beijing program. During her time at Chicago, Hannah worked as a copy editor for the student newspaper and taught after-school art classes at local elementary schools. In her spare time, Hannah enjoys running and reading, and she is excited to have the opportunity to live and work in Beijing.

Katie Stewart

Consultant for Senior Scholars
  • Yale University

Katie graduated from Yale University with a degree in English Literature. As an undergrad, she tutored in a range of subjects, edited a literary journal, and served as a senior mentor to incoming freshmen. After graduation, Katie joined the Yale-China Teaching Fellowship and moved to Anhui Province, China, to design and teach Oral English classes at a public high school. She took particular pleasure in counseling several of her students as they applied for and were admitted to Yale’s summer program for high-school students. Katie is originally from New York City and, in her free time, enjoys playing and watching sports of all kinds.

Kelsey Owyang

Consultant for Senior Scholars, Consultant for Junior Scholars
  • Haverford College

Kelsey is a California native and graduate of Haverford College. A Sociology major and Chinese minor, Kelsey’s intellectual interests lie in educational theory and Asian American studies. Through teaching in diverse settings – a charter school in Philadelphia’s Chinatown, an international special needs academy in Shanghai, her own public middle school in California – Kelsey grew dedicated to mentoring students of all backgrounds. Outside of the office, she loves taking dance classes, eating dim sum, and learning new languages.

Xueying Chen

Consultant for Senior Scholars
  • Wellesley College

Born in Guangdong, China, Xueying grew up in Seattle, Washington, and graduated from Wellesley College with a double degree in English Literature and Economics. During college, she taught students how to write analytical essays in one-on-one tutorial courses. She also ran the campus newspaper and has worked as a business journalist in Cambodia as well as a television news producer in Chicago. What excites Xueying the most is the craft of storytelling, which she hopes to share with her students at ESC!

Sydney Gehrking

Consultant for Junior Scholars
  • Cornell University

Sydney is a native Minnesotan, with a dual degree in Asian Studies and Biological Sciences from Cornell University. She was involved in a variety of extracurricular clubs and volunteer organizations as an undergraduate, most of which focused on bettering the lives of students of all ages and backgrounds through afterschool programs and peer mentor groups. She also was fortunate enough to study abroad in both Cambodia and China, which, coupled with her personal and academic interests, confirmed her desire to pursue a career in China. At ESC, Sydney hopes to use her background to help students realize their full academic potential and give them the tools necessary to compete in the global marketplace.

Constance Chien

Consultant for Senior Scholars
  • Wellesley College

Originally from Connecticut, Constance graduated from Wellesley College with a degree in English and French Literature. At Wellesley, she wrote for and edited the college magazine, and served as the music director for the campus radio station. After finishing college, Constance taught English grammar and composition to high school students in rural France, and worked as a paralegal for an international law firm in New York. She is excited to be once again working with high school students, having had longstanding interests in education, mentorship, and cross-cultural connections. In her spare time, Constance enjoys running, hiking, visiting art galleries, and reading literature and poetry.

Liza Garrity

Consultant for Senior Scholars
  • Vassar College

Liza majored in Educational Studies and minored in Chinese at Vassar College. She worked as a consultant at the writing center, where she developed a love for working one on one with students. She also volunteered with the Listening Center, a 24/7 peer-to-peer hotline. She spent a summer in a Qingdao University language intensive. Through working at community centers, educational non profits, and a variety of classrooms, she became interested in the interpersonal aspects of education. Liza grew up in Brooklyn and enjoys cooking, knitting, and listening to podcasts.

Emma Schoenberger

Consultant for Senior Scholars
  • Colgate University

Emma graduated from Colgate University with a degree in Peace and Conflict Studies and a regional concentration in the Middle East. While abroad in Israel, she observed the benefits of an educational approach tailored to the individual student while working at a school for children with autism in Jerusalem. Back at Colgate, she applied that approach to her work preparing local high school students for the SATs and college admission process. Emma also worked as a facilitator for Colgate’s Bystander Intervention program, where she revamped the curriculum to better fit the specific needs of Colgate’s students. When Emma is not working, she enjoys painting, cooking with friends, riding horses, and playing tennis.

Kate Davis

Consultant for Junior Scholars
  • Wesleyan University

Kate grew up in a small town in New York and graduated from Wesleyan University with a major in Economics. While at college, she worked as a new student orientation intern, calculus teaching assistant, alumni and parent relations intern, and academic peer advisor. After graduation, she worked at a financial technology company until realizing how much she missed the experience of mentoring students and helping them acclimate to college life. In her free time, Kate enjoys running, skiing, and trying new types of dumplings.

Paul Irizzary

Consultant for Junior Scholars
  • Middlebury College

Paul is a Middlebury College graduate with a degree in International & Global Studies (with a focus in East Asian Studies) and a minor in Education Studies. Paul has been involved with many diverse educational communities, and has been fortunate to work with students of a variety of ages and backgrounds. This includes being a teaching assistant at Middlebury’s local children center, as well as working as a mathematics and Chinese teacher at an independent private school in his hometown of New York City. In his free time, he also enjoys partner dancing, swimming, and attending concerts.

Taylor Weston

Consultant for Junior Scholars
  • University of Notre Dame

Taylor Weston was born and raised in Hawaii and graduated from the University of Notre Dame. As a Psychology major and Chinese minor, Taylor developed an interest in education, learning behavior research, and Chinese culture. Working at a school in Hawaii, she helped develop the school’s first Chinese language immersion program and enjoyed working with middle school students visiting from China on an exchange program. Taylor has a passion for education counseling, and has mentored and tutored children in her community since high school. In her free time she enjoys being active outdoors, eating noodles, and reading non-fiction books.

Ray-Ting Fan

Consultant for Senior Scholars
  • Tufts University

Ray-Ting graduated from Tufts University with a double major in International Relations and Psychology. At Tufts, Ray taught health content in under-resourced high schools with Peer Health Exchange, and mentored college freshmen in her role as a Resident Assistant. These experiences led her to passion for education and mentorship, and Ray is thrilled to work with ESC’s exceptional students in a one-on-one setting. Ray grew up in both Kansas City and Taipei. In her free time, she enjoys running, cooking, and traveling to new places.

Maya Grumeretz

Consultant for Senior Scholars
  • University of Michigan

Maya graduated from the University of Michigan with degrees in Asian Studies and Sociology. Her academic interests include processes of cultural understanding and integration, and the impact of modernization on traditions and cultures. After graduation, Maya moved to Beijing, where she mentored American students studying abroad to help them adjust and succeed in their new environment. Maya is member of Beijing’s ultimate frisbee community that works to develop leadership, teamwork, and athleticism in young women.

Alec Nash

Consultant for Senior Scholars
  • Emory University

Alec graduated from Emory University with a degree in International Relations. As an undergrad, he worked with Emory’s International Strategy office in which he analyzed the university’s international research networks and rankings. After graduation, Alec moved to Washington, D.C. to work with a company that facilitates educational exchanges between American and Chinese universities. Here, he fostered a passion for strengthening international relations through education. Alec is originally from Atlanta, Georgia.

Mackenzie Bell

Consultant for Senior Scholars
  • Macalester College

Mackenzie is originally from Columbus, Ohio. She graduated from Macalester College, where she majored in Chinese and International Studies, and concentrated in Economics.

Academically, Mackenzie is interested in international health and art history, and has grown to love mentoring students through her experiences working as a counselor at a summer camp offered by her high school in Columbus, and tutoring at a predominantly Hmong elementary school in Saint Paul. Her fondness of Chinese language and culture has also brought her to study abroad in Shanghai and Guilin. On her own time, Mackenzie enjoys hiking, drawing, and playing music with friends.

Ellison Taylor

Consultant for Senior Scholars
  • Claremont McKenna College

Ellison graduated from Claremont McKenna College with a degree in International Relations and a concentration study on East Asia. During his undergraduate years, Ellison studied Chinese for three years and spent the spring semester of his junior year studying at East China Normal University in Shanghai. In addition, Ellison was captain of the CMC water polo team and a mentor to the incoming freshmen class. Ellison lives in Mission, Texas, and enjoys swimming and playing ping-pong in his free time.

Carolyn Sorkin

Director of North American Counseling
  • Brown University (BA)
  • Stanford University (MA)
  • New York University (Ph.D.)

Carolyn has specialized in international higher education for nearly thirty years: in admission at Brown University, education abroad at Wesleyan University and the Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile, area studies and scholarly research at New York University, and professional training and international development with USAID-Chile. She joined ESC in 2014, focusing on students attending high school outside of China. Carolyn earned a Ph.D. in International Education at New York University with a dissertation on public intellectuals in Chile’s transition to democracy, a dual MA in International Development Education and Educational Administration & Policy Analysis from Stanford University with a thesis on intellectuals and sociopolitical change in Central Europe, and a BA in History from Brown University. Bilingual in Spanish, Dr. Sorkin first fell in love with international education during a semester in Toledo, Spain, and looks forward to helping her twins study abroad in 2025-26.

Kevin Kreiger

Consultant for Scholars in North America

Kevin has been a University Admissions Counselor and Career Coach since 1998. His range of expertise includes graduate schools, and professional aspects from internships to job seeking, resumes, and cover letters. In 2012 he was invited to lead seminars on College Application Essays in Beijing, Shanghai, and Taipei. He is also privileged to do extensive volunteer counseling and educational work with scholastically-challenged urban communities in Los Angeles.

Prior to this, he spent 12 years teaching Writing, French, and English Language at institutions from U.C. San Diego to Phillips Andover Academy to the Université de Dijon in France.

His first collection of poetry, KAIROS, will be published this year.

Catherine Chan

Consultant for Scholars in North America
  • Fordham University (B.A.)
  • Fordham University (MA)

Born in Hong Kong and raised in the Bronx, Catherine joined Elite Scholars of China after serving four years as an Admission Officer at Vassar College. While at Vassar, Catherine specialized in both multicultural recruitment and the recruitment of international students from China, East Asia, and the Pacific Rim. Catherine is a graduate of Fordham University in New York where she majored in History and minored in Art History. During her two-year term as an Admission Counselor for her alma mater, Catherine earned her Master’s in Public Communication with a focus on Global Chinese Cinema. Catherine is excited about working with the students and team at ESC on the “other side of the desk”.

Jordana Greenberg

Consultant for Scholars in North America
  • University of Michigan (B.A.)
  • National Louis University (MA)

Formerly an educational consultant for eight years with a counseling firm based in Evanston, Illinois, Jordana has been advising college-bound students and their families on the increasingly complex and competitive process of applying to college. Jordana has a Master’s degree in counseling from National Louis University and has been certified as a licensed professional counselor by the National Board for Certified Counselors. She graduated from the University of Michigan with a Bachelor’s degree in psychology. When not working with college-bound students, Jordana can be found playing with her son and daughter and dining (hopefully al fresco) at one of Chicago’s many wonderful restaurants.

Cathy Shufro

Consultant for Scholars in North America
  • Brown University (B.A.)

Cathy Shufro has taught writing at Yale and Wesleyan universities and for Yale’s English Language Institute. She serves as a Bass Writing Tutor at Yale College, where she works one-on-one with students on academic papers and application essays.  In addition, Cathy has been the on-call writing consultant for the Yale World Fellows program, which brings leaders from all over the world to the university.

Cathy writes for magazines including the Yale Alumni Magazine and Johns Hopkins Public Health magazine.  She is also a photographer and has traveled widely in Asia. Cathy graduated from Brown University.

Rosemary Jones

Consultant for Scholars in North America
  • University of Adelaide (B.A.)
  • Queens University of Charlotte, North (MFA)

Rosemary Jones is an Australian who graduated from the University of Adelaide and taught in secondary schools before moving to the United States where she lectures in writing at Yale. In addition, she tutors as a Bass Writing Tutor for Yale College, helping individual students with their papers. She has taught for the Yale English Language Institute, as well as the University of Adelaide. In the summer, she teaches for the Warrior Scholar Program, a non-profit organization that assists military veterans transition to college. She received her MFA from Queens University of Charlotte, North. Rosemary writes fiction and non-fiction. Her stories have appeared in a range of literary journals. She recently won Alligator Juniper’s 2015 national prize for non-fiction.

Madeleine Broder

Consultant for Scholars in North America
  • Yale University (B.A.)

Madeleine graduated from Yale University with a BA in psychology and studied fiction and non-fiction writing as well. Her apprenticeships at Yale with professional writers combined with her experience teaching and tutoring high school students allow her to help young adult writers craft rich stories. Madeleine lives in Connecticut. She enjoys traveling to Argentina, where her husband is originally from, and spending time with her rescue dog, Rugby.

Jamaal Pemberton

Test Prep Instructor
  • Oakwood University

Originally from New York, Jamaal is a graduate of Oakwood University with a degree in math. Jamaal comes to Elite Scholars of China after working as a personal tutor for the last 5 years. He has experience tutoring students in calculus, differential equations, and physics, and ACT and SAT prep. At ESC, he works as a test prep instructor, providing students with a strong foundation to succeed on their tests and in their college careers.

Jason Chan

SAT Program Director
  • Rochester Polytechnic Institute

Jason comes to Elite Scholars of China after working for the five years with Bell Curves, a premier test prep company in New York City. Jason has extensive experience as a tutor in subjects including English, Math, Calculus, Biology, Chemistry, Social Studies, and English as a Second Language. At ESC, Jason is the lead developer and teacher of the SAT program. With a keen and deep understanding of the SAT, he is creating a program specifically designed for Chinese students to help them obtain the scores they need to be competitive in the college application process.

Reed Woodrum

Test Prep Instructor
  • Princeton University

Reed is a recent graduate from Princeton University, where he obtained a degree in International and Public Policy.  Prior to joining Elite Scholars of China, he worked as a research assistant and offered tutoring services in various subjects to his local community.  Reed himself is a skilled and experienced test-taker, having perfect scores on SAT II subject tests, a 35 composite score on the ACT, and has been awarded the titles of AP Scholar with Distinction and National Merit Finalist. Now, he works as an ACT instructor for ESC, helping students succeed in navigating the complex American college application process, and making sure their test scores accurately reflect their full potential.

Amanda Guo

Director of Recruitment
  • University of Sydney

Amanda Guo comes from the beautiful province of Jiangsu. She chose to study abroad in Australia at the age of 17 and received a bachelor’s degree in Linguistics and Communications. After graduation, Amanda worked as a counselor at an international student center. She is well experienced in helping international students study abroad. She also holds the CELTA certificate (Cambridge Certificate in English Language Teaching to Adults). Before she joined ESC, Amanda worked in a large English teaching institute in Beijing. At ESC, she is mainly in charge of communication with parents and students, interviewing new students, and helping parents communicate with American counselors.

Melinda Yang

  • Renmin University of China

Melinda Yang graduated from Renmin University of China with a major in Business Management. Prior to ESC, she has been working at international companies in selling and customer service work for years. She is very glad to join ESC, and she hopes she can help students apply to their dream school by her responsible work with them. As the Parent Liaison at ESC, Melinda coordinates with the counselors to ensure a successful college application, also communicates directly with parents about their child’s application, and arranges meetings for counselors and students.

Rita Li

  • Tianjin Foreign Studies University

Rita Lee graduated from Tianjin Foreign Studies University with a major in English. Before joining ESC, Rita worked in an English training program for children in Beijing for 4 years. At ESC, she is in charge of talking with prospective families, answering parent and student questions, and interviewing new students.

Louis Liu


Christina Hao

Parent Liaison
  • Hebei Normal University

Christina Hao graduated from Hebei Normal University with a major in English Education. She has been working in education for nine years and has experience working at both local and international schools as well as in training. She has also helped students apply for American colleges and is familiar with the application process. As the counselor associate at ESC, Christina coordinates with the counselors to ensure a successful college application, communicates directly with parents about their child’s application, and arranges meetings for counselors and students.

Emma Fan

Parent Liaison
  • Guizhou Normal University

Emma graduated from Guizhou Normal University with a major in English Education. She has been working in education for 6 years and has experience working at local school and as a service agent. She is familiar with the college application process and wants to help more students apply to American universities.As a parent Liaison at ESC, Emma coordinates with the counselors to build a bridge of communication with parents, updates parents about their child’s application, and arranges meetings for counselors and students to ensure a successful college application.

Lisa Liu

Parent Liaison
  • Mississippi College (MEd)

Lisa graduated from Mississippi College with a master’s degree in Secondary Education and all A grades. She has been working in education since 2012 and has experience working at both public and private schools in America and China. As a parent liaison at ESC, Lisa coordinates with the counselors to ensure that the application process goes smoothly, communicates directly with parents about their child’s application, and arranges meetings for counselors and students.

Monica Liu

Parent Liaison
  • Beijing Foreign Studies University

Monica Liu is a graduate of Beijing Foreign Studies University, where she majored in English. As a Parent Liaison at ESC, she is the communication “bridge” between the parents and ESC, sending Parent Notes regularly to parents, resolving problems in the application process, and providing the utmost support to students and counselors. Her main goal is to ensure smooth and productive communication between the students and their counselors.

Paula Zhou

Assistant Counselor
  • Beijing Foreign Studies University

Having graduated from Beijing Foreign Studies University, Paula Zhou worked in the international department of a public school for about five years. She has accumulated rich experience in helping students get admitted to prestigious U.S. universities, and is quite familiar with the application process. As an assistant counselor at ESC, Paula closely works with counselors and students to ensure a successful college application.

Zihao Liu

Student Services Coordinator
  • Cornell University

Zihao Liu is from Kaifeng, Henan Province, and is a class of 2016 graduate from Cornell University. During his undergraduate studies he was a member of the College Scholar Program and majored in History while minoring in China Asia-Pacific Studies. He spent the first semester of his junior year as a research intern at Hudson Institute, a foreign policy think tank based in Washington D.C. His academic interests focus around international security and politics. His experience as an exchange student during high school and a Cornell alumnus has given him a strong passion in promoting cultural dialogue and international education.  In his free time you can find him reading military history, listening to the Eagles, and playing basketball.

Victoria Gu

Marketing and Operations Coordinator
  • Chinese University of Hong Kong

At ESC, Victoria is in charge of organizing events and managing internal and external communications. Prior to ESC, she was a Project Manager at an IT start-up company. Before that, Victoria gained extensive experience in marketing promotions at several international companies and organizations. She graduated from The Chinese University of Hong Kong.

Li Xi

Marketing and Events Assistant
  • Shantou University

Neal Sun

New Media Digital and Marketing Coordinator
  • University of Idaho

Frannie Yuan

Office Manager
  • Nanjing University of Finance and Economics

Frannie is from Nanjing, Jiangsu, a beautiful city that carries a long history. At ESC, Frannie is in charge of office management and logistics. Before she joined ESC, Frannie worked in senior-level management training, managing a firm’s support department. Frannie graduated from Nanjing University of Finance and Economics with a major in finance. In her free time she also volunteers in life coaching activities and seminars to help others improve their attitude and state of mind.

Susan Sun

Office Manager
  • Xingtai University

Susan was born in Inner Mongolia and grew up in Shandong province. She graduated from Xingtai University and majored in English literature. She got a B in TEM-8 examination. She has an over five-year working experience in office management before ESC. Susan is very welcoming and will always support you when you need her.