FLEX College Prep® Privacy Policy

Posted Date: April 19, 2023
Effective Date: April 19, 2023

FLEX College Prep operates the https://FLEXcollegeprep.com/ website, which helps students use their pre-college years in intentional, enriching, and personally satisfying ways. Partnering with families, we help students find happiness, meaning, and success in college and beyond. We respect the privacy of every person and student who visits the website or uses our services. We are committed to ensuring a safe online experience.

This FLEX College Prep Privacy Policy (“Policy” accessed at https://FLEXcollegeprep.com/privacy-policy) describes how FLEX College Prep (“FLEX College Prep, “we,” “us,” “our”) collect, use and otherwise process the personal information we collect about our customers, students, purchasers,  and/or users (“User”, “you”, or “your”) of our websites, software, apps and other services (collectively, our “Services”).

It is important that you carefully read and understand the terms and conditions of this Policy. By accessing our Services, you are providing your consent to our collection, use and disclosure of information about you as described in this Policy. Additionally, our Terms of Use are incorporated by reference into this Policy. If you do not agree to these terms and conditions of the Policy, you are not authorized to use the Services or communicate with us via the Services. 

Please note that this Policy contains disclaimers of warranties and limitations on liability that may be applicable to you.

1. Personal Information. In this Policy, our use of the term “personal information” includes other similar terms under applicable privacy law such as “personal data” and “personally identifiable information.” In general, personal information includes any information that identifies, relates to, describes, or is reasonably capable of being associated, or reasonably linked or linkable with a particular individual.

2. Collection and Use of Information. FLEX College Prep collects information that you provide us directly or automatically when you use our Services. This information may include data collected about student and parent names, email addresses, school, grade in school and phone number, and Services usage. We may use the information for purposes such as to improve the quality of our Services, personalize your experience, display relevant advertising, evaluate the success of our advertising, provide customer support, message you (in ways described by this privacy policy and managed by you in your account settings), enhance the security of our Services, fulfill transactions authorized by you, and comply with legal obligations. 

3. Legal Bases for Processing Your Data. Pursuant to the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA), California Privacy Rights Act (CPRA), the Virginia Consumer Data Protection Act (VCDPA), the Colorado Privacy Act, and other privacy laws and regulations, in general, we process your personal information for the following legal bases:

a. Performance of our contract with you.
b. To comply with a legal obligation to which FLEX College Prep is subject.
c. For our legitimate business interests.
d. With your consent.
4. Purposes of Use and Processing. While the purposes for which we may process personal information will vary depending upon the circumstances, in general, we use personal information for the business and commercial purposes set forth below:
  1. Providing our Services and related support.
  2. Protecting the integrity of the Services.
  3. Analyzing and improving the Services and our business.
  4. Personalizing the Services.
  5. Advertising, marketing, and promotional purposes.
  6. Securing and protecting our business.
  7. Defending our legal rights.
  8. Auditing, reporting, corporate governance.
  9. Complying with legal obligations.

5. Investigations. FLEX College Prep may investigate and disclose information from or about you, as permitted by applicable law, if we have a good faith belief that such investigation or disclosure is (a) reasonably necessary to comply with legal process and law enforcement instructions and orders, such as a search warrant, subpoena, statute, judicial proceeding, or other legal process served on us; (b) helpful to prevent, investigate, or identify possible wrongdoing in connection with the Services; or (c) helpful to protect our rights, reputation, property, or that of our users, subsidiaries, or the public.

6. Vendors and Service Providers. We may engage vendors, agents, service providers, and affiliated entities to provide services to us or to Users on our behalf, such as support for the internal operations of our Services, online stores (including payment processors), products and services (e.g., forum operations, and technical support processing), as well as related offline product support services, data storage and other services. In providing their services, they may access, receive, maintain, or otherwise process personal information on our behalf. Our contracts with these service providers do not permit use of your personal information for their own marketing and other purposes. These disclosures are generally made under terms comparable to this Policy, and the recipients are limited to using the information the purpose for which it was provided. We may disclose automatically collected and other aggregate non-personally identifiable information with interested third parties, to assist such parties in understanding the usage, viewing, and demographic patterns for certain programs, content, services, advertisements, promotions, and/or functionality on our Service.

7. Business Transfers. If FLEX College Prep is acquired by or merged with another entity, if substantially all our assets are transferred to another company, or as part of a bankruptcy proceeding, FLEX College Prep may transfer the information we have collected about you to the other company.

8. Log Data. Whenever you use our Service, FLEX College Prep collects information that your browser sends to us that is called Log Data. This Log Data may include information such as your computer’s Internet Protocol (“IP”) address, browser version, pages of our Services that you visit, the time and date of your visit, the time spent on those pages, and other statistics. FLEX College Prep uses Google Analytics to collect data. We need this data to understand how you use our website so we can improve its functionality and provide a better customer interaction for you. 

9. Cookies and Other Tracking Technologies. FLEX College Prep, and third parties we interact with use cookies, web beacons, local shared objects (sometimes called flash cookies), and similar technology in connection with your use of our Services and third-party websites (collectively referred to in this policy as “Cookies”). Cookies are small data files that may have unique identifiers, and reside, among other places, on your computer or mobile device, in emails we send to you, and on our Service. We may use Cookies to transmit information about you and your use of our Service, such as your operating system, language preferences, referring URLs, device name, country, and location. When we use Cookies, we do so to further Services features and processes, facilitate relevant advertising, and help learn more about how users engage with our Service. Cookies may be persistent or stored only during an individual session. By continuing to navigate our website without changing your cookie settings, you hereby acknowledge and agree to FLEX College Prep’s use of cookies.

10. Information Security and Accuracy. FLEX College Prep intend to protect your personal information and to maintain its accuracy. We implement reasonable physical, administrative, and technical safeguards to help us protect your personal information from unauthorized access, use and disclosure. We also require that our suppliers protect such information from unauthorized access, use and disclosure.

11. Retention Period. FLEX College Prep will not retain personal information longer than necessary to fulfill the purposes for which it is processed, including the security of our processing complying with legal and regulatory obligations (e.g. audit, accounting and statutory retention terms), handling disputes, and for the establishment, exercise or defense of legal claims in the countries where we do business.  If you wish to cancel your account or request that we no longer use your personal information to provide the Services to you, please contact us as set forth below, in Section 16, Contact Details. However, if you withdraw consent or otherwise object to our collection, use and disclosure of your personal information, you may not be able to use the Services. Further, to the extent permitted by applicable law, we will retain and use your personal information as necessary to comply with our legal obligations, resolve disputes, maintain appropriate business records, and enforce our agreements.

12. Links to Other Sites. Our Services contain links to other sites that are not controlled by  FLEX College Prep. Please be aware that we are not responsible for the privacy practices of such other sites. We encourage you to be aware when you leave our Services and read the privacy policies of each site you visit. This privacy policy applies only to information collected by our Services.

13. Notice. By use of our Service, you consent to receive electronic communications from FLEX College Prep. You also agree that any such communications satisfy any legal requirement to make such communications in writing under this Policy or under any applicable laws or regulations. Specifically, we may provide notice to you by sending an email to the address that you provided as part of your registration for our Services. Any notice to FLEX College Prep can be provided by sending an email to [email protected].

14. Governing Law & Venue. This Agreement shall be governed in all respects by the laws of the United States of America and by the laws of the State of California. Orange County in the state of California shall be the exclusive forum for any mediation, arbitration, litigation, or dispute resolution.

15. Contact Details. If you have any questions, complaints or comments regarding our Policy or practices, please submit a request by emailing [email protected] or by postal mail at FLEX College Prep, 800 Roosevelt, Suite 100, Irvine, CA 92620

16. Right to Change Terms. We reserve the right at any time, with or without cause, to (a) change the terms and conditions of this Policy; (b) change our Services, including eliminating or discontinuing any feature of our Service; or (c) deny or terminate your use of and/or access to our Service. Any changes we make will be effective immediately upon our making such changes available on our Service, with or without additional notice to you. You agree that your continued use of our Services after such changes constitutes your acceptance of such changes. You hereby acknowledge that you have carefully read all the terms and conditions of our Privacy Policy (which can be accessed at https://FLEXcollegeprep.com/privacy-policy and agree to all such terms and conditions. Be sure to return to this page periodically to ensure familiarity with the most current version of this Agreement. If we make a material change to our Privacy Statement, we will post a notice at the top of this page for 30 days. BY CONTINUING TO USE OUR SERVICES AFTER SUCH REVISION TAKES EFFECT, WE CONSIDER THAT YOU HAVE READ, UNDERSTOOD THE CHANGES AND AGREE TO BE BOUND BY THE MODIFIED PRIVACY POLICY. 

17. U.S. Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (“FERPA”) and Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act of 1998 and its rules (collectively, “COPPA”). Children under the age of 13 shall only use the Services under an account created by and under their parent/guardian and are specifically prohibited from the use of the Services otherwise. To the extent that FLEX College Prep has access to “education records,” as defined by FERPA, it is deemed and shall function as a “school official” with “legitimate educational interests” when fulfilling its responsibilities under this Agreement, and both parties agree that Customer has “direct control” over the use of “education records” as these terms are defined under FERPA. FLEX College Prep agrees to comply with its obligations under FERPA, including but not limited to the limitations on re-disclosure of personally identifiable information from education records set forth in FERPA. 

FERPA and COPPA require us to inform parents and legal guardians (as used in this policy, “parents”) about our practices for collecting, using, and disclosing personal information from children. It also requires us to obtain verifiable consent from a child’s parent for certain collection, use, and disclosure of the child’s personal information. This section notifies parents of the types of information we may collect from children, how we use the information we collect, our practices for disclosing that information, our practices for notifying and obtaining parents’ consent when we collect personal information from children, including how a parent may revoke consent, and all operators that collect or maintain information from children through this Service. 

    1. The types of information we may collect from children. A child must provide us with the following information to register with this website: the child’s first name, last name, and an email address. We also require creation of a password. We may request additional information; however, this information is optional. We specify whether information is required or optional when we request it. We use Cookies, web beacons, and other technologies to receive and store certain types of information when you interact with us through your computer or mobile device. We also collect Log Data which may include information such as your computer’s Internet Protocol (“IP”) address, browser version, pages of our Services that you visit, the time and date of your visit, the time spent on those pages, and other statistics. 
    2. How we use the information we collect. We will use your information to provide our Website and Services to you including admission consulting; tutoring and test preparation; managing your account; responding to your inquiries; and for other customer service and support purposes. We also use the information collected to protect our rights and interests as well as the rights and interests of our Users and any other person; to comply with applicable legal or regulatory obligations, including complying with requests from law enforcement or other governmental authorities, or in legal proceedings involving FLEX College Prep, .
    3. Our Practices for Disclosing Children’s Information. We do not share, sell, rent, or transfer children’s personal information other than as described in this section. However, we may disclose aggregated information about many of our users, and information that does not identify any individual or device. In addition, we may disclose children’s personal information to third parties we use to support the internal operations of our Service and who are bound by contractual or other obligations to use the information only for such purpose and to keep the information confidential; if we are required to do so by law or legal process, such as to comply with any court order or subpoena or to respond to any government or regulatory request; if we reasonable believe disclosure is necessary or appropriate to protect the rights, property, or safety of FLEX College Prep, our customers or others, including to protect the safety of a child, protect the safety and security of the Website/App/Service, enable us to take precautions against liability, and To law enforcement agencies or for an investigation related to public safety.
    4. Our practices for notifying and obtaining parents’ consent when we collect personal information from children, including how a parent may revoke consent. At any time, you may review the child’s personal information maintained by us, require us to correct or delete the personal information, and/or refuse to permit us from further collecting or using the child’s information. You can review, change, or delete your child’s personal information by logging into your child’s account and visiting his or her account profile page or sending us an email at [email protected]. To protect your privacy and security, we may require you to take certain steps or provide additional information to verify your identity before we provide any information or make corrections.
    5. All operators that collect or maintain information from children through this Service. ActivityHero, Amazon Web Services (AWS), and Video Ask are the only operators that may collect or maintain personal information from children through the Website or our Services. Please direct your inquiries about any operator’s privacy practices and use of children’s information to [email protected] or by postal mail at FLEX College Prep, 800 Roosevelt, Suite 100, Irvine, CA 92620.  
18. California Residents. This section applies only to California consumers. It describes how we collect, use, and share California consumers’ Personal Information in our role as a business, and the rights applicable to such residents. If you are unable to access this Privacy Policy due to a disability or any physical or mental impairment, please contact us and we will arrange to supply you with the information you need in an alternative format that you can access. For purposes of this section “Personal Information” has the meaning given in the California Consumer Privacy Act (“CCPA”). We might collect the following statutory categories of Personal Information:

  1. Personal Information: Your personal information includes all the data you provide us when you sign up for an account or enroll in our services, including your name, email address, telephone number. If you make a payment for services, your card information is not held by us, it is collected by our third-party payment processors, who specialize in the secure online capture and processing of card transactions. 
  2. Geolocation data, such as IP address. We collect this information from your device. 
  3. Inferences.
  4. Other personal information, in instances when you interact with us online, by phone or mail in the context of receiving help through our help desks or other support channels; participation in customer surveys or contests; or in providing the Service.
As a California Resident, you have certain rights regarding the Personal Information we collect or maintain about you. Please note these rights are not absolute, and there may be cases when we decline your request as permitted by law.
  1. The right of access means that you have the right to request that we disclose what Personal Information we have collected, used and disclosed about you in the past 12 months.
  2. The right of deletion means that you have the right to request that we delete Personal Information collected or maintained by us, subject to certain exceptions.
  3. The right to non-discrimination means that you will not receive any discriminatory treatment when you exercise one of your privacy rights.
As a California Resident, you can exercise your rights yourself or you can alternatively designate an authorized agent to exercise these rights on your behalf. Please note that to protect your Personal Information, we will verify your identity by a method appropriate to the type of request you are making. We may also request that your authorized agent have written permission from you to make requests on your behalf, and we may also need to verify your authorized agent’s identity to protect your Personal Information. Please use the contact details above if you would like to:

  1. Access this policy in an alternative format,
  2. Exercise your rights,
  3. Learn more about your rights or our privacy practices, or
  4. Designate an authorized agent to make a request on your behalf.

19. Enforceability. If any provision of this Policy is found to be unlawful, void, or for any reason unenforceable, then that provision shall be deemed severable from this Policy and shall not affect the validity and enforceability of any remaining provisions. 

20. Entire Agreement. This Policy, along with the Terms of Use, constitute the entire terms with respect to the relationship between FLEX College Prep and you and supersedes all prior agreements, whether written or oral, concerning such relationship. This Policy may not be changed, waived, or modified except by FLEX College Prep as provided herein or otherwise by written instrument signed by FLEX College Prep. 

Strategies for the Non-STEM Student

Cracking the Code for UC Admissions

Education
  • Stanford University – MA in International Comparative Education
  • Vanderbilt University – BS in Human and Organizational Development (Education Track); BA in German Studies
Areas of Specialization
  • International students
  • Students seeking admission to highly selective school
  • Chinese immigrant families
  • Social Science majors

Tracy L.

Senior Associate Admissions Consultant

Tracy comes to FLEX with several years of experience as a college admissions consultant and career coach. She attended Vanderbilt, where she double-majored in Human and Organizational Development and German Studies. She then pursued her Master’s in International Comparative Education at Stanford. This combination of roles and achievements equips Tracy with a broad perspective on education and career readiness, enabling her to offer comprehensive guidance to students navigating the complex process of college admissions. 

 

Tracy’s recent experience as an education consultant at UNESCO provides her with an understanding of global education trends. Her deep knowledge of the college admissions process and skill in tailoring strategic applications for students’ unique profiles are enhanced by her research into parenting strategies. Tracy is well-equipped to provide parents with advice on effective communication with their children and parenting styles that best support their academic and personal development.

 

In addition to her professional expertise, Tracy is fluent in English, Chinese, and German. Having grown up in Shanghai, she is also familiar with the Chinese education system, which allows her to provide tailored advice to Chinese immigrant families who have recently arrived in the U.S.

How to Build a Personalized College List

College Admission Trends:

Soft-Skills Have Replaced the SAT In College Admissions

Common Application Common Mistakes

How to Answer UC Personal Insight Questions

Recent Changes to College Admissions

FLEX 2023 Open Houses

Back-to-School Support For Your 6th-12th Grade Student

Featuring presentations by FLEX’s world-class Academic Instructors and Admissions Consultants.

ATTEND the seminar “2023-24: The Impact of Technology on School & College Planning.”

  1. The SAT is going completely digital. How will this impact your student?
  2. What is the role of ChatGPT and other AI in college admissions?
  3. Which classes and extracurriculars should my 6th-12th grader be taking?
  4. Why is personality the new emphasis in college applications?

INDULGE in refreshments, giveaways, games, and more while touring your local FLEX Center.

ENJOY a sneak peek of FLEX’s programs including Impacter Pathway.

MEET the FLEX team who will share tips on back-to-school success.

WIN amazing prizes, worth thousands off our programs, in our raffle drawing.

For more information email [email protected] or call your local center.

How to Write Effective UC Admissions Essays

Does Having Perfect Academics Get You Into The UCs?

A Special Webinar Event

Class of 2023 College Admissions Trends:

Analyzing Surprising Results

Middle Schoolers:

Maximize Your Summer

Why Admissions Officers Look for Personality in Essays

UCLA & Brown Admissions Officers Share Insights

Why A+ Students Don't Get 5s On AP Exams

How AP exams have changed, how colleges use scores, and how FLEX can help

The New "Perfect Profile"

For Getting Into The UCs

ACE Preview Workshop:

College Essay Topic - Common App Personal Statement

UCLA vs USC

Webinars for 6th - 9th Grade Students

Personality Testing: The Newest Trend in Post-Pandemic College Admission

Webinars for 6th - 9th Grade Students

Prepare for Success in High School, College & Beyond

ACE Preview Workshop

Education
  • B.A. Biology and Asian Studies – Bowdoin College
  • M.A. Biological Sciences – CSUEB
Subjects
  • SAT Math
  • ACT Math and Science
  • AP Biology
  • AP Chemistry
  • AP Physics
  • AP Calculus

Akimitsu Makino

Master Instructor

Aki graduated from Bowdoin College with a B.A. in Biology and Asian Studies.  Upon graduation, he gained experience in ophthalmic clinical research, where he was fortunate to co-author publications and co-invent a patent.  While working in the clinic, Aki pursued a master’s degree in the biological sciences at CSU East Bay, where he completed a biotechnology certificate and was one of the few students to be granted a visiting scholar position at UCSF as part of his master’s research for one year.

Aki’s passion for helping students overcome challenges in math and science is demonstrated in his extensive tutoring experience.  From supplementing a student’s school curriculum to designing a customized course; for nearly a decade, he has helped students realize their goals.  In his free time, Aki enjoys learning new subjects and topics, all of which he utilizes when teaching students.

ACE Preview Essay Workshop

Why My Major?

Extracurricular Activities: Summer Planning

School may be in session now, but summer is a great opportunity for students to gain valuable experiences outside the classroom, and planning ahead is important. In recent years, research internships have become an important part of the college admission process, and your student can start building an impressive research resume as early as 9th grade.

A student’s extracurricular profile has become a significant factor in college admissions, speaking volumes to a student’s intellectual curiosity, personal excellence, and character. So how do you go about building one? Should a student display a wide variety of interests or deep interest in a single field? Do colleges care about the quantity over quality of activities? How can you distinguish yourself from other applicants? This is the time to showcase to colleges your passions and accomplishments outside of the classroom.

Join FLEX as we discuss what an extracurricular activities profile is, the relevance of extracurricular and summer activities, and how to build them seamlessly into a robust and cohesive application profile!

Changes & Trends: 

Analyzing Early Results for the Class of 2024

Sarah-Kim
Education
  • B.A. Psychology & B.A. Criminal Justice – University of Maryland
  • M.A. Legal and Forensic Psychology – UC of Irvine
Subjects
  • SAT English
  • ACT English
  • English
  • AP Psychology

Sarah Kim

Associate Instructor

Sarah Kim graduated from the University of Maryland in College Park with a B.A. in Psychology and a B.A. in Criminal Justice/Criminology. She currently studies at the University of California, Irvine pursuing a Master’s in Legal and Forensic Psychology. There, her research focuses on rapport and support building in interviews with adolescent victims of sex trafficking. She takes her research focus on rapport building to reach students individually in a gentle but focused manner. When not working or doing school work, she loves to read, dance, and spend time with her dog.

Sarah has been tutoring for 7 years with experience in K-12 general English as well as SAT/ACT Test Preparation. She specializes in the reading writing components of standardized tests. Her extensive background in tutoring has allowed her to be considerate of all students’ needs–whether that be young children learning how to read or high schoolers wanting to succeed on their SAT. Sarah believes that each student should be met where they are and strongly believes that every student can succeed.

Education
  • B.S. Economics – Arizona State University
  • M.A. Educational Leadership and Administration – UC Davis
  • Master of Education – Arizona State University
  • Ph.D. Sociocultural Studies and Educational Policy – Arizona State University
Subjects
  • English
  • Spanish
  • AP Spanish

Carmina Mendoza

Master Instructor

Dr. Carmina Mendoza is an education scholar with 25 years of experience in the public education sector. Her research and teaching have focused on Spanish instruction at different levels–elementary, secondary, and higher education.  Dr. Mendoza has decades of experience, both as a teacher and as a researcher of Spanish immersion programs in Arizona and California. 

Dr. Mendoza is also an active adjunct professor at Santa Clara University, teaching courses at the Masters of Arts in Teaching and Credential program. In this program, Dr. Mendoza has taught graduate level courses in Spanish to students who want to add a Spanish/English bilingual authorization to their teaching credential. 

Dr. Mendoza is also a published author. She is the author of the book Transnational Messages: Experiences of Chinese and Mexican Immigrants in American Schools.  She has also written chapters in edited volumes and articles in peer-reviewed academic journals, including the High School Journal and Multilingual Educator (publication of the California Association for Bilingual Education).

Education
  • B.A. Social Sciences, Emphasis Sociology – New York University
Subjects
  • ACT English and Reading
  • AP English Language and Composition
  • AP European History
  • AP Psychology
  • AP US History
  • SAT Verbal

Sara Delgado

Associate Instructor

Sara has a Bachelor of Arts in Social Sciences with an emphasis on sociology from New York University, and an Associates of Art in Sociology from Fullerton College. Sara’s past experiences as an educator and tutor range from Elementary to College age students. She provided peer-led supplemental instruction during her time at Fullerton College; during this supplemental instruction, she assisted students with understanding concepts and assignments in English courses taught at the school. She currently works as a long-term substitute teacher for local high schools. Sara’s main motivation to pursue a career as an educator is to support students and provide them with a fun and conducive learning experience that will set them up for future success.

Education
  • B.S. Computer Game Science – UC Irvine
Subjects
  • AP Computer Science A
  • Computer Science: C/C++
  • Computer Science: Java
  • Computer Science: Python
  • Math, Lower Level (Alg2 and Below)
  • Pathways – STEM Coding

Theodore (Teo) Lee

Associate Instructor

Theodore (Teo) Lee graduated from the University of California-Irvine with a B.S. in Computer Game Science. He has been tutoring computer science for the last 5 years, helping those new to the field understand and develop their computer science skills. In addition to tutoring, Teo is President of the local Association for Computing Machinery. He has led many team projects developing software, and he has won numerous prizes in the many competitions he has attended.

When teaching students, Teo likes to implement practical examples and explain concepts using visual models and diagrams. In the field of Computer Science more specifically, it is especially important to understand how things work “under the hood,” so Teo strives to equip his students with multiple ways of thinking about a problem, thereby developing their own style in navigating the various technical routes toward achieving a solution.

Education
  • B.S. Business Administration in Marketing and Finance – UC Berkeley
  • M.S Education – CSU East Bay
  • Multiple Subject Teaching Credential – CSU East Bay
  • Single Subject Teaching Credential English, History Social Science, Science – CSU East Bay
Subjects
  • AP Macro and Micro
  • ACT English Reading Science
  • SAT Verbal
  • AP Gov
  • APUSH
  • AP Lit and Lang
  • AP Environmental Science

Rick Denny

Master Instructor

Rick attended San Francisco’s Lowell High, qualifying as a National Merit Finalist. After graduating from UC Berkeley’s Haas School of Business, Denny spent 15 years marketing and managing tech startups that were acquired by Amazon, Microsoft, Time Warner, and others for hundreds of millions of dollars.

Seeking to make a meaningful difference in students’ lives, Rick earned an MS in Education, and seven California teaching credentials including single subject English, history and social science, and science. Since 2007, Denny has taught and tutored diverse learners in English through AP Language and AP Literature; social science through AP Macroeconomics, AP Microeconomics, and AP US History; and science through AP Environmental Science. Rick has also mentored students in individual college-level research projects.

Since 2013, Denny has helped students excel on standardized tests, especially the SAT and ACT.  Rick particularly enjoys individual tutoring because he likes getting to know his students and their interests, customizing instruction to meet their needs, and contributing to their growth and success. His tutoring superpowers are listening, analysis, patience, and humor.

Education
  • B.A. English, Philosophy – University of Hartford
  • Ph.D. English – UC Irvine
Subjects
  • AP English Language & Composition
  • AP English Literature & Composition
  • AP Psychology
  • FRMC – Humanities

Michael Mahoney

Master Instructor

Dr. Michael Mahoney holds a PhD in English from the University of California-Irvine, where he has extensive experience teaching university courses in College Writing, English, Philosophy, Film, and History. Michael is widely recognized for his ability to engage students. He has received multiple campus-wide awards in recognition of his excellence as an instructor. In addition to his teaching, Michael’s research has also been recognized for its innovative approach to interdisciplinarity. His doctoral work has received support from endowments in fields as diverse as literary criticism, medical humanities, and science and technology studies.

Michael believes strongly in a student-centered approach to teaching, one that emphasizes active engagement with core concepts in order to achieve specific learning outcomes. His goal is to equip students with the skills to think critically, meaningfully, and independently about texts, ultimately helping them gain a sense of mastery and command over their use of language. Drawing on nearly a decade of experience teaching college writing in various disciplines, Michael also aims to help students reach their full potential in developing compelling and insightful essays.

Elijah
Education
  • B.S. Mathematics – Harvey Mudd College
Subjects
  • AP Calculus
  • College Math
  • SAT Math
  • Math (lower and upper level)

Elisha Dayag

Associate Instructor

Elisha Dayag is a PhD student in Mathematics at UC Irvine. He received his BS in Mathematics at Harvey Mudd College. For the past five years, he has taught and tutored a wide range of students and topics: everything from 6th graders to college students doing calculus and beyond.

As a tutor, Elisha feels that math instruction should be tailored to a student’s specific needs and help soothe any anxieties they may have regarding mathematics. He further believes that anyone can be proficient in and, more importantly, find joy in doing mathematics given enough practice and the right guidance.

Education
  • B.A. English, Minor in European Studies – UCLA
  • M.A. English – CSU Long Beach
Subjects
  • ACT English and Reading
  • AP English Language & Composition
  • AP English Literature & Composition
  • AP European History
  • AP US History
  • AP World History
  • Pathways – English & Writing
  • SAT Verbal

Chelsea Gibbons

Associate Instructor

Chelsea Gibbons holds a B.A. in English with a minor in European studies from UCLA and an M.A. in English from Cal State Long Beach, where she specialized in 18th century British literature. While pursuing her Master’s, Chelsea worked as a managing editor for the school’s academic journal and taught as a graduate assistant for numerous literature and history classes. Outside of the university setting, Chelsea has instructed high school students across the humanities, and specifically in the test prep environment: her teaching background includes AP English Language, AP English Literature, AP European History, AP US History, AP World History, college application essays, and standardized test prep (ACT, ISEE, PSAT, SAT).

Chelsea views the classroom as a democratic space. Her students are active participants in their own learning, guided as they are through thoughtful discussions and assignments. She strongly believes that the development of critical thinking and the promotion of a global perspective makes humanities classes crucial to every student’s education, no matter what their major or academic focus.

Education
  • M.S. Physics – New York University
  • M.S. Applied Mathematics – CalPoly University, Pomona
  • M.S. Physical Chemistry – CalPoly University, Pomona
  • B.S. Physics – CalPoly University, Pomona
Subjects
  • AP Calculus AB/BC
  • AP Chemistry
  • AP Physics 1
  • AP Physics 2
  • AP Physics C: Electricity & Magnetism
  • AP Physics C: Mechanics
  • Chemistry
  • Computer Science: Python
  • Math, Upper Level (Trig and Up)
  • Pathways – STEM Coding

Andres Cardenas

Principal Instructor

Andrés Cárdenas is an accomplished scientist and STEM teacher. He holds multiple Master’s degrees: one in Computational Physics from NYU, another in Applied Math from CalPoly, and one in Physical Chemistry, also from CalPoly.

After working as a researcher at Los Alamos National Laboratory, Andrés spent 8 years teaching AP Physics at New York City high schools. His passion for science, in part, explains his love for teaching: his classroom enthusiasm is immediately visible,  something his students find contagious. Andrés believes that a robust STEM education starts with a student’s sense of wonder and a desire to discover; and his curriculum work reflects an emphasis on connecting concepts with theory organically—be it in mathematics, physics, chemistry, or computer science.

How to Build Your Extracurricular Activities Profile

For Stand-Out College Applications

Pre-Med and BS/MD Programs -
What It Takes to Get In:

Is There a Doctor in the House?

What Sophomores & Juniors Should Be Doing Right Now to Prepare for College

Senior year may seem like it’s far away, but if you start your college application planning now, you will reduce stress and reap the rewards of a seamless and quality college journey.

In this seminar, we will share how a little foresight in specific areas will help you achieve your college goals. Topics covered include:

  • Choosing Classes Strategically
    • Did you know that public schools and private schools calculate their GPA differently? Learn how to select classes that will optimize admission to your target college. We’ll also talk about the importance of taking Honors/AP® courses, as well as college level credits in high school.
  • Building Your Extracurricular Activities
    • What you do outside of class both in school and off campus is an important part of your college application journey. We’ll provide strategies on how to not only best keep track of your extra-curricular activities now but also give you insights on which activities can enhance your college application.
  • Preparing for Standardized Tests
    • Students should actively plan and prep for standardized tests well before their senior year. We’ll share how you can best approach your PSAT®/SAT®/ACT® and what you should start doing now to maximize your success on the target test date.

Attend this in-person seminar to learn what Sophomores and Juniors MUST know about college applications and how you can get a winning start!

Changes & Trends:

Early Results For The Class Of 2023

Maikel-Masoud
Education
  • BSC. Mechanical Engineer – University of Alexandria
  • A.S. Mechanical Engineering – Diablo College
  • B.S. Mechanical Engineering – UC Berkeley
Subjects
  • AP Physics
  • Math (lower and upper level)
  • SAT Math
  • ACT Math and Science
  • AP Calculus

Maikel Masoud

Associate Instructor

Michael holds a Bachelor Degree in Mechanical Engineering from UC Berkeley and another from Alexandria University in Egypt. And he is currently pursuing a Master’s in Robotics at the University of Maryland.

Michael is passionate about education. He believes that he can help make every student love Mathematics and Physics – even those who have had a hard time coping with the nuances and complexities of these fields. Michael has taught widely throughout the Bay Area. He has been an instructor and STEM tutor at Diablo Valley College, as well as working in that capacity with students in private schools in San Francisco and in Berkeley. Having served in the US Army as a Combat Medic Specialist, Michael is experienced in aiding individuals when they are under extreme stress and in need of a calming, motivating presence. Michael is generous and kind, and particularly enjoys connecting to different cultures and people of all backgrounds.

Flex College Prep
Education
  • PhD Sociology – University of Southern California

Alfredo Huante

College Essay Instructor

Alfredo Huante holds a Ph.D. in Sociology from the University of Southern California. He has taught several undergraduate courses, introducing students to or advancing their understanding of the social world. Alfredo has published works in academic journals and
websites and has ample editing experience. Alfredo excels at helping students translate their experiences into engaging, written essays by adjusting to each student’s specific needs.

Flex College Prep
Education
  • B.A. English – Stanford University

Cristina Herrera Mezgravis

College Essay Instructor

Cristina graduated from Stanford University with Distinction and awards both in fiction and nonfiction for exceptional work in Creative Writing. Her application essays were published in 50 Successful Stanford Application Essays and 50 Successful University of California Application Essays.

She taught English to elementary school students while studying abroad in Paris, ran a creative writing program for high school students during her senior year at Stanford, and currently volunteers as an ESL tutor with the Palo Alto Adult School. Cristina worked for two years at an Andreessen Horowitz-backed startup, prototyping a new mobile app for teachers and students, and curating unpublished books, stories, and deleted scenes by New York Times bestselling authors.

Her experience in admissions consulting began by helping friends and family highlight the passions that set them apart as individuals and select the colleges that were a right fit for them. Students she advised were admitted to Stanford University, USC, and UC Berkeley, among others.

sara-fernandes
Education
  • B.A. English – Santa Clara University
  • Masters of Library and Information Science – San Jose State University

Sara Fernandes

Assistant Director of College Essay

Sara attended UC Berkeley and transferred to Santa Clara University after deciding she wanted the opportunity to work with faculty on research. While at Santa Clara University, she helped Professor Judy Dunbar research and edit her book The Winter’s Tale: Shakespeare In Performance . Sara then went on to obtain her Master’s Degree in Library and Information Science at San Jose State University and graduated in the top 1% of her class.

She has used her undergraduate and graduate education to pursue her passion of teaching research and writing to students. Sara has over five years of experience teaching and coaching, over two of which are with FLEX College Prep. At FLEX, Sara has successfully taught classes in SAT Verbal, ACT Verbal, middle school writing and English classes, college essay, and AP English Language and Composition.

She is committed to staying current with trends in test prep and college admissions as well as setting realistic goals for each student so that he or she can achieve success.

NicholasD
Education
  • B.A. US History and Philosophy – UC Davis
  • M.A History – San Francisco State University

Nicholas Dawes

College Essay Instructor

Nick Dawes earned his BA in US History with a philosophy minor from the University of California, Davis, and an MA in History with a concentration in cross-cultural contact from San Francisco State University. While Nick was growing up, many in his family were teachers and school administrators across the South Bay, including Fremont Union High School District, so he is intimately familiar with the academic landscape of the Bay Area.

While in graduate school, he lectured in undergraduate courses, acted as an associate editor of an academic journal, and published his own original work. After graduation, Nick worked in standardized test prep, AP subject tutoring, and he most recently taught at a Bay Area private school for five years. He believes that students learn and work best when they have a productive relationship with their instructor.

In his essay coaching, he works to help students dig deeper into who they are as individuals and what motivates them in order to find the compelling, unique stories in each student. Nick has worked with students on their college admissions essays for the last 9 years, helping students gain admission to top UCs and other prestigious top 20 public and private institutions across the country.

Flex College Prep
Education
  • Doctoral study in Human Development and
  • Psychology – Harvard University
  • M.A. Applied Child Development – Tufts University
  • B.A. Anthropology – Boston University

Martha Crowe

Master Consultant & Instructor

Martha Crowe has worked with, for, and on behalf of youth for three decades, as a social worker, child advocate, nonprofit director, consultant, and for the past eight years, as a professor, researcher, and medical writer at SDSU. Helping people tell their stories has been at the heart of each phase of her career. Martha loves getting to know young people — to hear about what they care about, what they are good at, and what their dreams are for their futures. And magic can happen when they trust her enough to help them tell their stories in an authentic and compelling way that both honors who they are and convinces admissions counselors to accept them.

 

Martha believes in taking a personalized approach with each student, tailoring her time with them based on their individual writing skills and learning needs. Her approach is always based on genuine care and concern combined with concrete action items and deadlines. For the past four years, Martha has helped students get into a variety of colleges, as well as honors programs within those colleges, from tiny to huge, rural to urban, California to the East Coast: UC Berkeley, UCLA, UCSD, UC Davis, Northeastern, UMass Amherst, University of Michigan, Syracuse, Macalester, Santa Clara University, Pepperdine, University of San Diego, Loyola Marymount, Cal Lutheran, Cal Arts, Claremont McKenna Colleges, University of Minnesota, University of Illinois-Urbana Champagne, among others.

 

Martha grew up in Kansas City and joyfully left for Boston after high school, attending Boston University, Tufts, and Harvard for undergraduate and graduate school. She moved to SoCal in 2004 to spend time with her brother after graduation, and like so many others, forgot to leave. Most importantly, she’s a mom to three kids, who are, at the time of this writing, 18, 16, and 12, and an auntie to 58 nieces and nephews (true story) and too many great nieces and nephews to count. In her spare time, Martha volunteers with High Tech High, Miracle League, and Meals on Wheels, is an avid reader, and loves hanging out with her kids.

Flex College Prep
Education
  • B.S. Mathematics – UCSD
  • M.S. Psychology – King’s College London (In Progress)

Helena Chen

College Essay Instructor

Helena is a Masters student in Psychology with extensive experience in the education sector, where she has worked as a teacher, consultant and student advocate. She started tutoring students in high school and supported herself in college as an SAT instructor. With a mathematics background but still very much interested in pedagogy and mentorship, Helena decided to leverage her analytical mindset and ability to problem-solve by continuing to work in college admissions consulting–advising high school students and their families on the complex college admissions process. Through this work, she continued her passion for teaching others how to write and hone their narrative voice, which brought her to FLEX as a college essay instructor.

Flex College Prep
Education
  • B.A. English/Creative Writing; Minor: Music Industry and Cinematic Arts – University of Southern California

Gabriel Block

College Essay Instructor

Gabriel graduated magna cum laude from the University of Southern California with a BA in English/Creative Writing. He honed his writing skills through writing-intensive programs at USC and the University of Melbourne in Australia. After graduating, he spent four years in the music industry working for Sony Music Publishing, where he engaged in daily writing assignments and excelled at working with others and building trusting relationships. Gabriel has years of teaching experience; he brings a warm energy and first hand expertise in writing successful college essays. In the classroom, Gabriel values trust and joy. With a genuine interest in others, he builds trust through keen listening and clear and open communication, and asks for the same, in return. By having fun with the material and leading with positive reinforcement, he brings his best to the classroom and gets the best from his students. Most importantly, Gabriel believes in pursuing what you love. He can’t wait to learn what makes you who you are and to help you convey your authentic self to your dream school.

Northern California Info Banks September 17th

An Inside Look at Flex College Admissions
jaimie
Education
  • UC Irvine – MA in Art History
  • UC Irvine – BA in Art History with a minor in English
Language(s)
  • English (native proficiency)
  • Korean (conversational)

Jaimie Joo

Associate Consultant & College Essay Instructor

Since her days as an undergraduate, Jaimie has had an insider’s perspective of the college admissions process at the University of California system. She has worked as a Campus Representative in the Office of Undergraduate Admissions and as an Academic Advisor in the School of Humanities at UC Irvine, where she gained invaluable insight into the admissions and counseling process. Because of these experiences, Jaimie understands the importance of fit when selecting and applying to colleges. Additionally, she has been able to work with a diverse group of students, including international students and first-generation students.

With all of her students, Jaimie strives to help them gain entrance to a college or university that will not only set them up for career success, but will also help them find joy in learning. She hopes she can help her students feel empowered in their own skills and abilities.

Jaimie is also a FLEX College Essay Specialist, which allows her to bring out her students’ most authentic and compelling selves. She has a proven track record in producing high-quality storytelling with her students and finds that writing is a necessary strength for any major.

In terms of admissions, Jaimie has worked with students who have been granted admission to John Hopkins, UC San Diego, and UC Irvine.

During her free time, Jaimie volunteers for an Asian American art collective. She enjoys reading, writing, and talking about pop culture.

dickson
Education
  • B.A. Computer Science and Linguistics at UC Berkeley
Subjects
  • AP Computer Science A
  • Computer Science: Java
  • Computer Science: Python
  • Math, Lower Level (Alg2 and Below)
  • Math, Upper Level (Trig and Up)

Dickson Tsai

Master Instructor

Dickson Tsai graduated from UC Berkeley with a B.A. in Computer Science and Linguistics, and he is currently a software engineer. While at Berkeley, he worked as a teaching assistant for numerous computer science courses. In addition to teaching undergraduates, he also tutored high school students online in AP Computer Science and on the SAT, reaching the Top 10 in “Super Helpful” ratings at a top online education service platform.

Dickson cares most about cultivating a growth mindset in students, since an internal desire to improve leads to a stronger, healthier motivation than any external reward. He emphasizes a mastery of fundamentals through highly interactive activities like drawing program visualizations for AP Computer Science. 

Through this and other activities, Dickson works to accurately assess his students’ understanding and provide timely, actionable feedback. That way, students can gain the confidence to reason on their own from first principles.

AshleyR
Education
  • B.A. Creative Writing – SFSU
Subjects
  • English Enrichment
  • College Essay

Ashley Rodriguez

Associate Instructor

Ashley attended San Francisco State University where she received her BA in Creative Writing with an emphasis in Poetry. As an avid writer, Ashley developed an interest in poetry at a very young age, after immersing herself in the collections of Edgar Allen Poe and William Shakespeare. Throughout her college experience, Ashley participated in numerous workshops where she was able to sharpen her skills in playwriting, poetry, short stories, novels, and essays. She worked as an Editor for Transfer Magazine, SF State’s literary publication, where she read and edited hundreds of submissions and selected the best pieces to be published. After college, Ashley worked as an Editor for an appraisal firm, interned as a writer for a travel magazine, and became the lead writer for a video game startup, here in the Silicon Valley.

Her passion for writing developed into a drive to educate youth on the English language. From Creative Writing to grammar and vocabulary, Ashley enjoys helping students hone their writing skills and prepare them for college. For over 5 years with FLEX, she has tutored students in essay writing for college and graduate school applications, with a focus on Architecture, History, Interior Design, Art, STEM, Social Sciences, and more! Ashley is a taskmaster who ensures her students complete coherent, authentic, and strategic essays well before application deadlines.

MattL
Education
  • B.S. Mathematics – Stanford University
  • M.S. Mathematics – San Jose State University
  • Ph.D. Mathematics – UC Santa Barbara
Subjects
  • SAT I & II Math
  • ACT Math
  • AP Calculus AB and BC
  • Computer Science (Java, C++, & Python)

Matt Lazar

Principal Instructor

Matt Lazar specializes in mathematics, including Algebra I, Geometry, Algebra II, Precalculus, AP Calculus AB, AP Calculus BC, Multivariable Calculus, Linear Algebra, and Discrete Mathematics. He is also familiar with higher level mathematics including abstract algebra, complex analysis, real analysis, differential geometry, differential topology, and point set topology. In addition, he has experience in editing math textbooks. Matt Lazar is capable of teaching introductory computer science languages, including the languages of C++, Java, and Python. Within the area of computer science, Dr. Lazar specializes in two dimensional and three-dimensional computer graphics.

At FLEX College Prep, Dr. Lazar would like to transfer his skills in mathematics and computer science to his students, so that his students can become successful in their education and their careers. Matt’s exceptional teaching ability is also shown in his AP track record, where the average AP Calc BC score of his students is 4.9, with 90% of his students earning 5s. His passion for math has enabled students across the ability spectrum to achieve their Calculus learning goals.