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Faculty and Staff

Karen IEP CroppedDr. Karen Braxley

Dr. Braxley received her Ph.D. in TESOL from the University of Georgia and her masters in English and American Literature from California State Polytechnic University. As a native of Great Britain, she did her undergraduate degrees at the University of East Anglia and Thames Valley University.  Her research interests include sociocultural theory, qualitative research, and academic writing in a second language. She has had the very great pleasure of teaching grammar, writing, and teaching skills to international students at UGA for 20 years.



Brad PictureMr. Brad Dinardo

Throughout his master’s program in TAL (Teaching Additional Languages, 2012), Brad had a prestigious Graduate School Assistantship in CLASE (the Center for Latino Achievement, Learning and Education), where he took part in a longitudinal research study on effective educational pedagogy.  Additionally, he worked as an English instructor at the UGA IEP in Summer, 2012 and Spring, 2014, and at the University of North Georgia from 2012-2013.  Prior to this, Brad had five years’ experience working as an instructor in English language schools in Atlanta, GA, and in Costa Rica.


MarinaMs. Marina Doneda

Marina Doneda has been teaching for over eight years. She taught English as a Second Language in Brazil in the school setting, as well as teaching night classes at businesses that wanted to expand their international relations.  She has lived in five different countries as an adult, and loves experiencing different ways of life. Her master’s is in Education and she also has a BA in Anthropology and Sociology, giving her insight into cultural differences from an academic viewpoint as well. She’s originally from Athens and loves to help students explore her hometown and learn all about the exciting events and activities Athens has to offer!


susiegill1Ms. Susie Gill

Susan Gill attended art school and holds a master’s degree in TESOL. She taught English to international adults and trained English teachers in Boston, Denver, Los Angeles, and New York before joining the University of Georgia. She has more than 30 years’ experience teaching ESL and is a local artist who loves to foster her students’ artistic abilities as well as their linguistic abilities!



Sun 3Ms. Sun Kwon

Sun Kwon received her Master’s degree in TESOL from the University of Southern California. Her interests include Multiliteracy studies, Virtual Learning environments, English grammar, and writing. Prior to teaching at the University of Georgia, she taught classes for refugees and mentored immigrant youths. She has been volunteering as a violin player and as a tutor in her free time in Lawrenceville, Georgia, where she grew up.



JNSMr. John Shipley

John has taught English to speakers of other languages for over 15 years.  He taught at the International School of Choueifat in Beirut, Lebanon and spent ten years teaching English in Madrid, Spain. He earned his M.Ed. in TESOL and World Language Education before beginning his  Ph.D. studies in UGA’s department of Language and Literacy Education.  Much of John’s pedagogical approach in the classroom is informed by sociocultural theory and its interpretation of the learning process and systemic functional linguistics.  He is also interested in discourse analysis, the interactional hypothesis theory in SLA, and an art-based approach to second language education.


LavonMr. Lavon Smith

Lavon Smith received his M.Ed. in Language Education (TESOL) and his MA in French from the University of Georgia. His interests include pronunciation, academic grammar and writing, arts-based approaches to teaching and research, phenomenology, critical discourse analysis, and dialogical classrooms. In his free time, he enjoys playing guitar, participating in various sports, meeting people from other cultures or countries, and traveling.

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