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Our Staff

We in the IEP at TCU strongly oppose the guidance released on July 6, 2020, by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), announcing that nonimmigrant F-1 and M-1 international students enrolled at institutions offering only online courses for Fall 2020 will be required to either transfer to schools holding in-person classes or else exit the United States. We do this with our partner institutions and organizations, EnglishUSA, TESOL International Association, and UCIEP.

All instructional staff and the director are deeply-caring experienced experts. Each of us has learned language intensively. Each of us has improved our second language by being students in a tele-classrooming intensive program. Each of us took a standardized language test before and after our intensive language program, using tele-classrooming. And each of us improved on the test!

All of us understand what students in the Intensive English Program at TCU are doing, when they study long hours and tele-classroom and take standardized tests that prove just how much they’ve improved by their work!

Barbara Alvarez, Faculty
Barbara Alvarez, Instructional Staff
M.B.A., Texas Christian University
TESOL Graduate Certificate, University of Texas at Arlington

M.A., Arts and Education, University of Alabama, Birmingham
B.S., Medical Technology, Baptist Medical Center, Birmingham, Alabama
B.S., Biology, Carson Newman College

Barbara first taught English as a second language at TCU in 2001.  She is a learner of Spanish who has spent time studying in Ecuador.  She teaches in the Intensive English Program, and she is also an ESOL Adjunct Faculty Member. She has passed the TExES™ English as a Second Language Supplemental (154) Test for teaching ESL in public schools in Texas and is, furthermore, certified to teach in Alabama and Florida.

Barbara took a tele-classrooming Intensive Spanish Program at TCU. Before her program, she took the Versant Spanish Test; after her program, she took the test again and improved! She’s been teaching via tele-classrooming since January 2020, teaching students on three different continents at once. She expects all to improve on the Versant English Test.

Office: Rickel 244  Phone: 817-257-6591 Email: b.alvarez@tcu.edu

Margaret Ann Bryan, Graduate Assistant
Margaret Ann Bryan, Graduate Assistant, Office Manager
M.S.Ed, Curriculum & Instruction: Language & Literacy, Texas Christian University (currently working on)
B.S.Ed, Early Childhood Education, Texas Christian University

Margaret Ann is an Office Manager for the Intensive English Program. In May 2019 she finished her Bachelors Degree in Early Childhood Education here at TCU. In June she was granted her teaching certificate in the state of Texas for Generalist Education, K-6. She also has her all levels ESL certificate. She is currently pursuing her Masters in Education focused on designing and implementing a Language and Literacy curriculum.
Office: Rickel 244 Phone: 817-257-7485 Email: m.a.bryan@tcu.edu

Shannon Burnham, Faculty
Shannon Burnham, Instructional Staff
M.A. TESOL
B.S. Biblical Literature with Minor in Cross-cultural Communication, Dallas Christian College
Certification in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages, Lincoln Seminary

Shannon first taught ESL for TCU in the Spring of 2010. She learned Koine Greek and French as an undergraduate student and has studied Farsi for professional purposes and Spanish for fun. Shannon has lived and worked in India, Cyprus, the United Arab Emirates, Pakistan, and the USA (in the states of Illinois and Texas). She has passed the TExES™ English as a Second Language Supplemental (154) Test for teaching ESL in public schools in Texas.

Shannon took a tele-classrooming Intensive Spanish Program at TCU. Before her program, she took the Versant Spanish Test; after her program, she took the test again and improved! She’s been teaching via tele-classrooming since January 2020, teaching students on three different continents at once. She expects all to improve on the Versant English Test.

Office: Rickel 244 Phone: 817-257-6066 Email: s.burnham@tcu.edu

Dustin Dirickson, Faculty
Dustin Dirickson, Instructional Staff
M.S., Information Science, University of North Texas                                 
M.Ed., Bilingual/TESL Multicultural Education, University of Central Oklahoma
B.A.Ed., Fine Arts Education, Southwestern Oklahoma State University
After receiving his degrees, Dustin spent a decade living and working in Japan. He began teaching in the IEP at TCU in January 2012. He speaks Japanese and French, and he is a student of Spanish. He teaches in the Intensive English Program, and he is also an ESOL and ENGL Adjunct Faculty Member. He has passed the TExES™ English as a Second Language Supplemental (154) Test for teaching ESL in public schools in Texas.

Dustin took a tele-classrooming Intensive Spanish Program at TCU. Before his program, he took the Versant Spanish Test; after his program, he took the test again and improved! He’s been teaching via tele-classrooming since January 2020, teaching students on three different continents at once. He expects all to improve on the Versant English Test.

Office: Rickel 244 Phone: 817-257-4069 Email: d.d.dirickson@tcu.edu

Kurk Gayle, Director
Kurk Gayle, Director
Ph.D. English, Texas Christian University
M.A. Linguistics & TESOL, University of Texas at Arlington
B.A. Foreign Service, Baylor University

Kurk came to TCU in 1995 to serve as the director of ESL courses.  He grew up speaking English and Vietnamese in Vietnam; he’s also studied Indonesian in Indonesia; as a university student he has had formal education of Japanese, Greek, Cherokee, Hebrew; from teachers of American Sign Language, Comanche, Spanish he’s learned a bit more. He’s passed the TExES™ English as a Second Language Supplemental (154) Test for teaching ESL in public schools in Texas.

Kurk’s pronouns (y probombres de Kurk):
he, him, his
él, lo, le, su(s)

Kurk took a tele-classrooming Intensive Spanish Program at TCU. Before his program, he took the Versant Spanish Test; after his program, he took the test again and improved! He’s been working with the other instructional staff who are teaching via tele-classrooming, since January 2020, teaching students on three different continents at once. He expects all to improve on the Versant English Test.

Office: Rickel 244 Phone: 817-257-6565 Email: k.gayle@tcu.edu

Jana Nolan, Faculty
Jana Nolan, Instructional Staff
M.Ed. Secondary English Education, Texas Christian University
B.A. English and Psychology, Texas Christian University

Jana started teaching in the IEP at TCU in 2007.  She has also taught in four other university-level ESL programs (Moldova, Virginia, North Carolina, and Texas).  She learned Spanish while a student at TCU, Romanian while working in Moldova, and studied in England and South Africa as well. She is certified to teach in public schools in Texas and has passed the TExES™ English as a Second Language Supplemental (154) Test for teaching ESL in public schools in Texas.

Jana took a tele-classrooming Intensive Spanish Program at TCU. Before her program, she took the Versant Spanish Test; after her program, she took the test again and improved! She’s been teaching via tele-classrooming since January 2020, teaching students on three different continents at once. She expects all to improve on the Versant English Test.

Office: Rickel 244  Phone: 817-257-5515 Email: j.nolan@tcu.edu

Lizdelia Piñon, Doctoral Graduate Instructor
Lizdelia Piñon, Doctoral Graduate Instructor
Ed.D, Educational Leadership, Texas Christian University, Fort Worth, TX (Currently working on this)
M.S.Ed, Literacy and Education, Northern University, Dekalb, Illinois
Certificate of Graduate Study in Teaching English as a Second Language and Bilingual Education
B.S., Political Science, Minor Spanish, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, IL

Liz first taught English as a second language in Bensenville, Illinois for 8 years as an elementary teacher.  She completed her Masters in education at Northern Illinois and her educational administrative certificate at DePaul University in Chicago, Illinois.  She is certified to teach in public schools in Illinois and in Texas, is certified as a school principal in Illinois, and has passed the TExES™ Principal (068) Test for public schools in Texas. She is currently working on her dissertation on Translanguaging at Texas Christian University.
Office: Rickel 244   Phone: 817-257-7485 Emaill.pinon@tcu.edu

Virginia Puckett, Graduate Assistant, Office Manager

Virginia Puckett, Graduate Assistant, Office Manager
M.S.Ed, Curriculum & Instruction: Language & Literacy, Texas Christian University, Fort Worth, Texas (currently working on)
B.S.Ed, Early Childhood Education, Texas Christian University, Fort Worth, TX

Virginia is one of the Office Managers for the Intensive English Program. She graduated from TCU in May with her Early Childhood Education degree with a specialization in English as a Second Language and is a certified Elementary School teacher in Texas. She is currently working on her Master’s in Education focused in a Language and Literacy program.
Office: Rickel 244 Phone: 817-257-7485 Email: mary.v.puckett@tcu.edu