Learning Strategies, Pre-Algebra
18 years teaching experience
11 years of Administrative Duties
BS Sociology, College of Charleston
International Global Studies, Institute for Shipboard Education
Delta Kappa Gamma Society International
Tara grew up in Montreal, Quebec, Canada, and benefitted from the provincially mandated bilingual education system. She and her family are all avid equestrians, having discovered Aiken as a perfect winter training base in 1977. Married for 29 years to polo player Charlie Bostwick, Tara, Charlie, and their family have made Aiken their full-time home since 1994.
Tara has traveled extensively throughout her life, most recently to Central America as chaperone to youth groups.
Tara’s educational philosophy incorporates her desire to provide students with a relevant global education.
“Young people must develop a strong awareness of the world around them. Today they need to have the tools to navigate a global community that is more interconnected than ever before. It is our role as educators to provide a twenty-first century curriculum that not only addresses the divergent learning styles of our students but also provides a course of study that tackles the challenges which the next generation of leaders will face.”
College Counseling, Essay Writing, English
40 Years of Teaching Experience
5 Years English Department Chair, Academic Dean
BA Hood College
MA Fairleigh Dickinson University, Rutgers University
Karen has had a variety of diverse opportunities in her long career as an educator. She has taught everything from 5th grade to AP English Literature and Composition, AP US History and also spent several years as a Middle School Reading Specialist.
Karen moved to Aiken sixteen years ago from New Jersey and never looked back. She loves living in the South and particularly enjoys the uniqueness that is Aiken. She has had the occasion to teach many students from varied backgrounds and has always been challenged to find ways to meet their needs.
Karen loves to learn, and after receiving her Masters Degree, continued to take post graduate courses and also has been declared “highly qualified” by the state of South Carolina.
She loves to read, play golf and walk on the beach. She spends many weeks a year on Hilton Head, and also enjoys visits from her children and grandchildren.
32 years of Teaching Experience
BA French, College of Charleston
MA English, The Citadel
National Board Certification, French
Lily, an Aiken native, taught for many years in Charleston at Ashley Hall School and Charleston Collegiate Academy. After teaching for seventeen years at South Aiken High School, she retired from Aiken County schools in 2014. A recipient of Fulbright awards to France and Japan, Ms. Baumil taught in France and has traveled extensively. She has written two books, Lord, What Shall I Say to Them for Thee?, a collection of her father's sermons, and Crime in Carcassonne, a young adult fiction novel, and she is working on a biography of Sarah Pressley Watson from Ridge Spring, SC, who was honored by France as chevalier of the Legion of Honor for her work in that country from 1920 to 1959. Currently, Ms. Baumil writes for Bella Magazine and volunteers as a Guardian ad Litem for Aiken County. She has two children and three grandchildren and is married to Barry Tompkins of Aiken.
Pre-Algebra, Algebra I, Geometry
35 Years Teaching Experience
BSEd Education, Georgia Southern University
MEd Education, Georgia State University
Denise's many years of teaching has focused on both special education and regular education from pre-school through adult education in both public and private schools. Her experience has allowed Denise to participate in the scope and sequence of education in its totality. She also feels strongly that future success cannot be determined by someone's performance in preschool, elementary, or middle school. Tutoring helps to provide confidence and helps build self esteem, two important factors in shaping a student's academic career.
Denise has lived in Aiken for 30 years and is married to Jeff Griffin. Her hobbies include genealogy research, travel, and needlepoint.
Chemistry, Biology, Environmental Studies
Pre-Algebra, Algebra I, Geometry,
Pre-Calculus, College Algebra,
49 years in Education in Georgia and South Carolina as a principal, mathematics teacher, adjunct college professor, tutor and ACT/SAT coach.
EdD University of Georgia
EdS Georgia Southern University
ME Georgia Southern University
BS Georgia Southern University
My path as an educator was set early when a teacher asked me to guide my fellow classmates in solving a math problem. The technique, enjoyment and passion came together, and my career was launched.
Throughout my long professional experience my skills were honed as I worked with all types of students with different abilities, skill levels and backgrounds. From homebound to correctional, from elementary to high school, from college students to dropouts, each has given me a sense of the need for individual awareness in order to facilitate their development and success in life.
I take great pleasure in pursuing my many leisure activities which include golfing, traveling, reading and solving math puzzles. They provide me with further challenge and enjoyment.
French, English, Religion, Social Studies SAT/ACT Prep
40 Years teaching experience
BA Physical Education and Health, University of Tennessee
MS Educational Administration and Supervision
Masters + 30 Certification in Math
John hails from the coal mining hills of Kentucky where his father taught the importance of hard work and humility. He began his teaching career here in Aiken at AHS where he taught math for 6 years and coached football. He then became Assistant Principal at Harden County High School in Savannah, Tennessee. While there he also taught Algebra I and II. Returning to Aiken John went to work at the then recently built SAHS teaching math and coaching football. In 2000 he became head of the math department until his retirement in 2010. During that time he became head coach of South Aiken's Football program leading the team for 3 years and producing a number of successful collegiate players.
John has an innate ability to make all of his students at ease by finding amusing anecdotes to the math lesson at hand. His jovial disposition makes him immensely popular with our students. He views math as a challenge to be solved always making sure that his student understands how to not only work the equation independently, but to understand how to apply that knowledge to similar problems. He is a master of demystifying math.
When not tutoring John loves gardening at home, woodworking, spending time with his grandson and traveling with his wife.
Spanish. Marketing, Communications
Mrs. Denise Ward Griffin
Learning Strategies, Reading
21 Years Teaching Experience
BA Mass Communications, with a Major in Audio Visual Arts and a Minor in Public Relations.Universidad Andres Bello, Caracas, Venezuela.
Born and raised in Arlington, Virginia, Monica moved to Caracas, Venezuela at the age of 14, where she lived for 25 years. In the year 2000, Monica decided to visit her brother and his family in Aiken and like so many, she fell in love with the area and ended up moving here shortly thereafter.
Monica is bi-cultural and fluent in both English and Spanish and has basic knowledge of French. She began working at Aiken Preparatory School where she was responsible for designing and implementing the Spanish program across all three levels. She then taught both Spanish and Yearbook for 12 years.
Monica took on a number of administrative duties all while teaching at APS, including Middle School Director and Director of Admissions. Her passion for all things Aiken Prep, unlimited energy, and dedication to students made Monica an indispensable asset to the school. Ms. Maldonado also taught Spanish at USCA as part of its Continuing Education Program.
Monica has worked with Aiken Educational Services since its founding in 2012. She brought with her 19 years of experience in journalism, public relations, sales, marketing, and audiovisual production, plus 16 years of foreign language teaching.
Today, Monica continues to share with her students her love and passion for the Spanish language and culture. She can also be found all over Aiken County sharing her love and passion for Aiken, helping families find their dream home. Monica says she truly has the best of both worlds: Teaching + Real Estate = Making a Difference!
During her free time, Monica enjoys cooking, listening to music, watching her favorite TV shows and movies, going to equestrian events, and spending time with family and friends. In her own words, "I am in my happy place when I am with my three incredible nephews and with my beloved Maltese, GiGi.
Chemistry, Physics, Calculus, Statistics,
German, French, Italian, ESL
37 Years Teaching Experience
BA Chemistry Erskine College, Erskine SC
MS Textile Chemistry, Clemson University
Masters + 30 years certification
National Board Certification, Chemistry
Beth worked briefly at Allied Chemical Company before finding her calling in teaching. She became a science and math teacher at Wardlaw Academy in Johnston, SC. She taught at Wardlaw for eight years and then moved to Aiken where she was hired to teach science at South Aiken High School. Mrs. Beckham taught primarily Chemistry including Chemistry II and AP Chemistry, at South Aiken for 29 years. While there, she served as Science Department Head before retiring in 2016.
Beth lives in Aiken with her husband of 39 years. They have two children Libby who works in Cincinnati, OH and has a daughter and one on the way. Beth's son Thomas is completing his Residency at Memorial Sloan Kettering Hospital in Radiation Oncology after having received an M.D.-Ph.D. from the Medical University of South Carolina.
PhD, Electrical Engineering Carnegie-Mellon University
MSEE, Electrical Engineering Carnegie-Mellon University
BSEE, Electrical Engineering Carnegie-Mellon University
George brings to AES a multitude of experience after an illustrious career in the Electrical Engineering field that has taken him from McDonnell Douglas Corp. in Los Angeles where he was responsible for developing digital simulation routines in the Guidance and Control Group, to Westinghouse Electric’s R&D Center in Pittsburgh where he specialized in electric and magnetic analysis, to SubAir Systems in Aiken where he developed and co-authored a key patent protection. George remarkably found time to be an Adjunct Professor in Electrical Engineering where he taught Electromagnetic’s, first at the University of Pittsburgh, then at the University of South Carolina. He is published and has traveled throughout the world presenting his papers at industry wide conferences.
Today he holds 14 patents, is an Engineering consultant with Summit Engineering, SubAir Systems, Club Car, Inc., and Roper Industries.
George has spent a lifetime collaborating and teaching peers and students in the STEM subjects. He continues to share his knowledge by substitute teaching at area schools and tutoring for us at AES.
33 years of teaching experience and holds a
BS Special Education,with a concentration in Learning Disabilities, College of Charleston
certification in Elementary Education.
Hilary started her teaching career in the North Carolina public school system, where she taught for 13 years. After relocating to Aiken Hilary found herself at Aiken Preparatory School teaching pre-algebra and learning strategies. She remained through the transition and taught at Mead Hall Episcopal School for the last 5 years. We are so fortunate to have Hilary on staff. She will head up our Learning Strategies Department, bringing experience, enthusiasm, and compassion. Students needing extra support in study skills, a boost in confidence, or new learning strategies will undoubtedly benefit from the addition of Mrs. Blanton to Aiken Educational Services.
3 years of Tutoring Experience
USCA Class of 2018
Minor in Religion & Philosophy
Sam was Born in Venafro, Italy, raised in France, but now calls Delemont Switzerland home. He is fluent in 5 languages (Italian, German, French, English, and Spanish) and has traveled extensively around the world. A talented golfer, Sam enrolled in the Swiss Olympic Sport Gymnasium in Davos so that he could devote more time perfecting his golf during the school year. He received his Swiss professional maturity diploma in economics in 2014 before arriving at USCA to play golf for Coach Carlisle.
Sam maintains a 3.85 GPA, and has either been on the Dean's list or President's lists every semester since enrolling at USCA. This past spring he was inducted into the Beta Gamma Sigma honors society and has been awarded the Frank Holmes Scholarship for the last three years for having the highest GPA on the golf team. He can also boast that he is a member of the team that has been recognized for having the highest GPA in all NCAA Division II sports.
Sam will graduate next spring, and then will report for his mandatory 9 month military service before going to graduate school for his MBA in International Management.
When he is not practicing with the team, Sam works as a tutor with AES and USCA, and as a caddy at Champions Golf Club in Augusta. He has taken full advantage of his American experience enjoying every aspect of an American education. When Sam packs up next Spring to return to Switzerland he will have undoubtably left an indelible mark on Aiken.
Physics, Calculus, Statistics, Pre-Calculus
27 years teaching experience
BA Chemistry Reed College, Portland Oregon
MA Chemistry USC Santa Barbara
PhD Physical Chemistry, USC Santa Barbara
After receiving her PhD, Dr. Cobb became an assistant professor at Cal State University before finding her way to the CSRA via the Savannah River National Lab as a research chemist. Cathy then went back to teaching accepting a faculty position at Augusta University where she achieved tenure.
In 2001 Dr. Cobb came to Aiken to teach at Aiken Preparatory School where she remains today ( Mead Hall Episcopal School). Cathy does not have free time in her vocabulary, and is a multi-tasker at heart! Not only does she teach high school students, she is an adjunct professor at USC Aiken, author of numerous books including academic publications and fiction.(translated into Chinese, Japanese, and Arabic). Her full length works include The Joy Of Chemistry, Crime Scene Chemistry For The Armchair Sleuth, The Chemistry Of Alchemy, to name but a few. She is also the recipient of many grants and awards as a result of her publications and research in the field of chemistry, notably a "Mechanistic Investigation of a Novel Class of Open-Circuit, Metal-Ion Catalyzed, Metal-Dissolution Oscillating Reactions,” awarded by the Petroleum Research Fund, American Chemical Society. Cathy also is credited with copyediting over 40 textbooks.
We are incredibly fortunate to include Dr. Cobb on our team at AES, she brings her passion for science and an unassuming teaching style that allows her students to connect with their science lessons.
College Math, Pre-Calculus, Algebra II, Geometry, Algebra I, Pre-Algebra