Academic Success Centre Staff


Michelle Amaya-Torres

Michelle Amaya-Torres

Welcome to the ASC! My name is Michelle and I am the ESL Specialist for RRC. That means I work with students, tutors, instructors and programs to help ESL students be successful in academic programs. Before I joined the ASC, I was an ESL instructor at the Language Training Centre, where I taught everything from beginner to advanced academic English and bridging programs.

I am fascinated by how culture and language interact and affect each other, maybe because I lived in three countries and in two languages when I was very young. I love reading and research, so any time you want to talk about language learning, please let me know!

Adam Bacchus

Adam Bacchus

Adam has been lending his unique educational style to the Academic Success Centre since early 2012. He is a graduate of the Adult Education and Educational Assistant programs at Red River College, and is currently progressing through a Bachelor of Arts at the University of Winnipeg.

Adam provides personal academic coaching support and facilitates group workshops on various study strategies, time management and academic writing. He also tutors students who need assistance in the applied humanities, such as the ECE, DCS, CYC, EA, CD/CED programs as well as with math in the trades and in the business programs.

“I believe that the first role of students is to find a passion, or at least a strong interest in the subject matter of each course they take. With a passion for the material secured, motivation to succeed remains high throughout their academic career. My role as an academic coach is to help students find that interest, and then connect them with the tools and resources they will inevitably seek once that interest has been sparked.”


Jeremie Crawford 

Hello! My name is Jeremie and I am currently a MSc student in chemistry. I have been tutoring for Red River College for a couple of years now and have really found a passion for teaching. Other than tutoring chemistry I have also been working with Nursing and dosage prep for 2 years, running year-round workshops and a summer prep program.

Not everyone learns the same way and I continue to push the envelope when it comes to new (and sometimes unorthodox) ways of teaching the material and building resilience to stress.

Sharon Erazo

Hi! My name is Sharon Erazo and I am an ESL Tutor in the Academic Success Centre. I have experience teaching ESL in both South America and Canada and have my Masters in English Language Teaching. In addition to teaching, I have worked as a Career Coach with new immigrants here in Winnipeg.

I love meeting people from different cultures and backgrounds and am passionate about helping students improve their communication skills.

 Dayna GrahamDayna Graham

My home base is in P210 at the Exchange District Campus where I will match you up with our excellent tutors and engaging math workshops. If I’m not in my office, you may find me in your classroom, facilitating a workshop on areas such as: protecting and utilizing your time, and effective study tools and practices. On a more one-on-one level, I’m an academic coach with the single focus of increasing the quality of your learning experience by helping you a) visualize your long term goals, b) assist you in creating the path needed to reach those goals, and c) provide you with ongoing feedback, tools and strategies to overcome any hiccups along the way.

Dolores Haggarty

I joined the ASC in March 2016 and am delighted for the opportunity to work with students at RRC. I obtained the Certificate in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (CELTA) in 1996 in Montreal. Since then I have taught ESL extensively in Montreal, Prague, Istanbul and Winnipeg. In addition, I hold a BA in Theatre and English from the University of Winnipeg and a Bachelor of Social Work from McGill. Before entering the world of ESL/EAL, I was a full-time journalist with CBC Radio, which included five years as a morning show co-host in Saskatchewan and several years as a host/producer with Radio Canada International (RCI) in Montreal.

In my recent work with ESL students, I have concentrated on helping to polish writing and reading skills. I have found that my main task as a tutor is to help students realize that they know far more than they think they do, and with careful planning, each and every student can produce work that far exceeds their own expectations.

Ron HamerlingRon Hamerling

Ron Hamerling has been a familiar and friendly face at RRC since 1995.

My specialty is in social sciences, including economics, business law, and  community and disability support. My favorite thing about tutoring is meeting with students and witnessing their growth both academically and socially. When I tutor, I always re-enforce developing study tools and procedures that the student learn. It is important that the student realizes that ultimately it is his or her responsibility to learn the material at hand.

I value a healthy division of time for study purposes and recreation or family time.

I believe in the value of regular practice, which is a great factor in the student’s success.

My interests are varied and include reading, travel and music.


Chris Harder B.I.D., TEFL

Hi! I have been with the Academic Success Center since June 2015 where I tutor students in ESL and facilitate workshops on a variety of topics related to English language and academic skills. Prior to joining Red River College I worked as an ESL instructor, program coordinator and Business English coach in South Korea for over ten years.

I am passionate about teaching and will always do my best to help my students achieve their personal language goals. If you are feeling that your language skills are holding you back from academic success, I would be happy to work with you to develop  the strategies and skills required to overcome these challenges!

Betty-Jean JohnsonBetty-Jean Johnson RN; CTESL

I have been a Registered Nurse since the 1970s and received my Certificate in Teaching English as a Second Language in 2009. Since that time I have worked with Internationally Educated Nurses, volunteered as a Conversation Partner and I continue to work as an RN at the Breast Health Centre in Winnipeg. I joined the Academic Success Centre in October of 2014. I enjoy working with students in the medical/nursing sciences, as this is my long time area of knowledge.


Michael Kozakewich

Since 2011, Michael has been tutoring the Business IT program and other computer-related areas at the Exchange District Campus. He graduated from RRC in 2007 as a Computer Programmer and Analyst.

He’s passionate about how information systems work: “I spend a lot of time exploring computers and their software. The ways in which we design user experiences in modern operating systems are finally making computing accessible to everyone. Thinking carefully about these systems is the key to making them relatable and easy to work with.” He likes to promote humane coding and thoughtful design when he engages students with their coursework.

Michael’s favourite thing about tutoring is that he can explore the beauty and expressiveness of all the different programming languages. Even though they look similar on the surface, each language has its own inner workings and they each excel at different tasks. There are often too many details to distinguish in a single semester, so the deeper complexity is glossed over during regular study. When needed, he’ll draw up sample material to explain weird concepts found in students’ courses.

Alice Landry

Alice Landry

Hi!  My name is Alice Landry and I am a staff tutor with the Academic Success Centre. I started my teaching career as a high school English teacher and then joined Red River College and was an EAL Instructor at the Language Training Centre for a number of years. I have found that both of these experiences have given me the insight and the tools for assisting RRC students who need to work on some language skills and strategies for achieving success in their college programs.


Karen Loeb

I have been part of the Academic Success Centre since September 2014. My role so far has mainly consisted of delivering workshops on English language usage and academic skills. I also work as an English instructor at the Université de Saint-Boniface and I have worked in other community-based ESL programs since 2010 (Entry Program, Mosaic, Seven Oaks Adult Learning Centre, English at Work). In addition to teaching, I am a professional translator and interpreter (English and French). Learning my second language at university gave me invaluable insight into the challenges that students face when they are studying in a non-native language. I enjoy working with people from different backgrounds and from all walks of life.

Meg Loewen

Hi! My name is Meg Loewen and I am an ESL Tutor in the Academic Success Centre. Since receiving my Bachelors of Education in 2009, I have worked in education both in Manitoba and abroad. I taught in Manitoba’s public school system for six years and spent time volunteering in educational settings in Peru, South Africa, and the United Kingdom. I have a Master’s degree in Cross-Cultural Education and the Certificate in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (CELTA).

I am deeply committed to teaching and excited about working with individuals from diverse backgrounds. Individual learning styles, goals, motivations, and stories shape us as learners, and I aim to support my students’ learning in the way that best suits them.

Lynne Lynne Martin Martin

Lynne is passionate about equipping people to be their best selves by discovering and building on their strengths. With over 35 years’ experience in people-related careers, Lynne enjoys interacting with students from various cultures and backgrounds. At Red River College, she offers expertise in ESL, study skills, writing and oral communication, through tutoring and workshops as well as academic coaching. Lynne secretly yearns to get a dragon tattoo.

Suzanne Mouflier

Suzanne Mouflier

Suzanne has been with us since 2010.

She is proficient in several RRC programs and academic content areas such as ECE, ESL, Social Sciences, Writing & Biology.

“I truly enjoy working one on one with adult students and getting to know them. I am very interested in different cultures and love learning about them. I also appreciate learning about how difficulties affect people and how I can facilitate their moving forward in their chosen area of work. When I tutor, I always encourage ESL students in particular to listen to English as often as possible and to read to improve their communication and writing skills. Degrees that have helped me are: Special Education & TESL I’m interested in art, especially pottery & I really like learning Spanish.

Robert NagyRobert Nagy

Hello My name is Rob Nagy

My credentials are as follows:

• B.Sc., Microbiology (4 year major) University of Manitoba
• R.T. (Registered Technologist) – Subject Microbiology
• A.R.T. (Advanced Registered Technologist) Microbiology

Roline Nguyen

Roline Nguyen

Having graduated from Red River College in Business Administration and currently working in accounting field, I would like to bring both my academic knowledge and hand-on experience to students, helping them not only succeed in their studies but also provide insight into real working environment.

One of my favourite quotes is “Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid.” I believe every student has their own strengths. The tutor should have different teaching approach for each individual. My aim is to encourage students to build up their confidence about themselves and become independent learners.

While being a student at Red River College, I registered to become a tutor to reinforce my own learning and earn extra income. But the experience from tutoring has given me much more than what I expected. Knowing that you can help people and seeing their progress is the biggest reward. I truly appreciate Red River College for giving me an opportunity to be a companion of students on their learning journey.

mike o

Mike Okrainec

I have taught for over 20 years throughout the province (and even a stint in Balmy Rankin Inlet). My specialty is in foundation math for the trades. Over the last several years, I delivered many programs in this area around the province for a couple of government organizations. One of my favourite things to experience is when a learner has that “Light-Bulb” moment, when they go from uncertainty to confidence in their abilities.


Jenny Petersen

Jenny is excited to be working amongst a team of dedicated professionals at the Academic Success Centre tutoring students and delivering workshops. Her training and teaching experience includes Early Years Education and ESL in varying capacities from classroom teaching to individualized instruction. She really enjoys working with and supporting students in various RRC programs to help them meet their academic goals. She is always amazed and inspired by the students’ level of enthusiasm, eagerness to learn and desire to succeed.

Lauren Phillips

Lauren Phillips

Hi! I’m the Manager of the Academic Success Centre and I’m thrilled to be working with all the brilliant people you see on this page. Our Centre is filled with educators who are dedicated to supporting RRC students and we pride ourselves in doing all we can to ensure students have the best chance of success at RRC and in their careers. Drop by for a visit anytime to meet our team!


Kaleigh Quinn

Hello! I’m Kaleigh, and I joined the incredible ASC team in January 2016 as an ESL Specialist. I work with Michelle to ESL support students, ESL tutors, and programs, and to assist students to develop the language skills they need to be successful in their academic programs and in the workplace.

I work both at the Exchange District Campus and the Notre Dame Campus, matching students with ESL tutors, tutoring students, facilitating Conversation Groups (come check one out!), and organizing pronunciation workshop and other workshops at students’ request. Please stop by the ASC if you’d like to learn more about our ESL supports; I’d love to meet with you!


Stephen Sawchyn 

Hi everyone!  My name is Stephen Sawchyn and in June, 2017 I  joined the team at the Academic Success Centre as an ESL Specialist.  I work with students, instructors and programs to provide the language supports needed for students to be successful in their college classroom and in the workplace.  Send me an email or stop by the ASC to learn more about the supports we offer and how we can help.

Kyle Schewe

Working primarily at the Exchange District Campus, Kyle has made the campus his home and can be found in P210 or in the Massey building tutoring Kyle Schewestudents, leading workshops, or working on projects that seek to improve the delivery of services by the ASC to improve the success of the students at RRC.

Kyle has experience teaching business related courses for over 10 years and has expanded his knowledge in such programs as Business Administration, Applied Accounting, and Commerce Industry Sales & Marketing. His ability to not only teach, but allow the learner the space to learn at their own pace and provide foundational skills applicable to all their courses, is what each student takes away from a meeting with Kyle. He models successful learning to students, and expects them to also put in the energy with their time together, as each student has control over their own progress and should feel pride in their achievements as they move from a new student to graduation. If there was only one piece of advice Kyle would give a student, it would be about reading questions from textbooks or on exams; “Read it again. Read it again! READ IT AGAIN!” He really believes that students do not allow themselves enough forgiveness in their own abilities, and cannot stress how important it is to read a question more than once. Kyle will be the first one to say he reads a question three times before he really understands it!


Scott Shabaga

Hello, I have been a tutor at RRC since 2013 and have loved (almost) every minute of it. I typically tutor students in math for trades and technology programs. One of my favourite aspects of tutoring is seeing the confidence grow within the students as they realize more of their their abilities and potential. I very much enjoy working with the students at RRC and hope to do so for many more years to come!

Ariy ShilsAriy Shilshtuthtut

I have a Master’s Degree in Mathematical Education.

I have over 30 years of experience in teaching and tutoring different math and statistics courses.

Since 2010 I have been working as a tutor of Academic Success Centre.

I am a tutor for all math and statistics courses.

Charanjit Singh Charanjit Singh

The one thing I enjoy more than Accounting and Stats is helping others understand the course material more fully. I am a recent grad from the Business Administration program and moved right into being a staff tutor. I primarily tutor in Business Admin, Applied Accounting and BIT.

My favorite thing about tutoring occurs in my Math and Accounting workshops – when I see a student or a group of students work together to find their own way to the solution. Being a recent graduate, I try to relate with the difficulties students face, and provide them with the guidance needed to move forward and succeed in achieving their goals. I encourage our students to study in small groups when it comes to solving complex problems because through team-work students find different ways in finding the solution.

My interests are varied and include travelling, sports and language learning.

Deanne SpiegelDeanne Spiegel BN MN

Prior to my retirement I was a classroom and lab instructor in Nursing Techniques at Red River College. I currently conduct review labs two afternoons per week for Nursing students who want more practice time.



dale369colour (2)Dale Swirsky

We are very sad to have to say goodbye to Dale, who passed away suddenly on July 2, 2017.

Dale leaves behind colleagues who are grateful for his professional influence, and students who thank him for their success. We were lucky to have “Coach Dale” on our team for a few years – we’re a much stronger group because of his time here.

If you were a student who worked with Dale and need to talk, or if you have questions about tutoring or coaching, please visit D110 at NDC or P210 at EDC for help.

Angela photo (11)Angela Tessier

Angela, whose background is in Science, immigrated to Canada from Ireland. She worked for many years as a workplace educator researching, developing, delivering and evaluating the impact of customized training in various industries. She also taught internationally trained professionals as an ESL instructor. Currently, at Red River, she is an Assessment Program Analyst where she conducts research and then implements customized solutions to enable students to succeed in their courses. In her spare time, she loves to be outdoors, read, travel and debate politics!

priyankaPriyanka Tuteja

I have a post graduate degree in Electronics Science and I tutor Electrical Engineering Diploma students. I like helping students by providing them with faster and easier ways to solve a complex problem. I have been associated with Red River for over a year and had a wonderful time meeting with different students. My favorite subjects are Digital Electronics, Semiconductors and Mathematics. I like it when I am able to make a difference in someone’s life and I try my best to make it easier for students as I know how stressful it can be.

Lisa Vogt

Hi! My name is Lisa Vogt and I’m an ESL Specialist with the Academic Success Centre. I’ve taught ESL since 2000, working in Tokyo, Vancouver and Winnipeg. At RRC I work with a team of ESL Specialists and ESL Tutors to support students and instructors. We look at the language demands for program areas and develop workshops, study groups and individualized tutoring to meet the needs of ESL students. Our goal is to help students develop their English language skills so they can be successful in College programs. Contact us if you need further information!

Ming Hua Xu

Ming Hua Xu

Ming is the voice and face of many Wise Guys Videos and a ASC Math and Science Blog.

She has helped hundreds of students in all the Technology Programs of Red River College. She’s also tutored in over 20 different courses.

Students can’t speak highly enough of Ming and her expertise in the math and sciences. She is approachable, patient and learner-centred.

View Ming’s math videos

If you’d like further tips and practice in math and science here at Red River, visit Ming’s House