Skip to content

Own a Sylvan

(888) 338-2283 Find a Location

Sylvan Students

Great Teachers Inspire

Our tutors and staff in Columbia-Irmo consist of passionate educators who love inspiring children to succeed. Warm, caring and great at relating to kids, our tutors in Columbia-Irmo know how to engage and motivate each child in a personal way—building confidence and smiles, as well as skills and better scores. We selectively choose tutors who know local curriculum and can link Sylvan lessons to what’s being taught in school.

Get to know our tutors and staff in Columbia-Irmo!


Cynthia Hacker

Center Director


Cynthia has been with Sylvan Learning since 2010 & in the position of director since 2012. She graduated from Western Illinois University with a degree in Education with a focus in Language Arts. Cynthia loves learning new things, and Sylvan gives her the opportunity to do that every day!  She feels each student can become more confident and successful academically. Her goal is to help students and their families reach their academic targets. When she is not at Sylvan, Cynthia enjoys spending time with her family and listening to live music!

Lauren Kennedy

Assistant Director


Lauren handles everything admissions at Sylvan of Irmo. She has years of experience teaching at the college level and has her Master of Fine Arts degree from the University of South Carolina, where she used to teach. When Lauren isn’t at Sylvan, you’ll find her at home with her husband and cats likely playing games or reading.


Jack Weigle


Jack has been tutoring with us for over 15 years at our Irmo location. He has a B.A. in English Education from USC. He is a favorite instructor of our Study Skills, ACT/SAT Prep, Writing and Reading students. His hobbies include his grandchildren, cartooning, playing the drums, gardening and swimming. He teaches at Fairfield Central High School and enjoys leading youth retreats and missions trips.


Fallon Christian


Fallon teaches at Boundary Street Elementary School. Her favorite part of teaching is celebrating with a kid when they master something that has been challenging. She enjoys swimming, painting, and cuddling with her dog!

Michelle Millard


Michelle teaches English at The Academy for Success. She has a Bachelor’s in Secondary Education for English and a Masters in Reading K-12. Her favorite thing about teaching is hanging out with the kids, listening to them tell their stories, and watching them achieve things they don’t think they can. She loves to read, especially Young Adult and historical fiction, work out at the gym, and go to the park with her dog Max. She also likes music and crafting.


Jestine Odom


Jestine Odom teaches math at Lexington High School. She received her BA from Columbia College and her Masters in Education for Secondary Math from the University of South Carolina. She most enjoys the connections she makes with students. In her free time, she enjoys watching Turner Classic and Lifetime movies, and has an interest in politics.

Loretta Pinkney


Loretta is a retired teacher after working for decades in school with students with learning differences. She loves working with students and seeing their faces light up with joy and confidence when they understand a concept. When not at Sylvan, she likes attending live theater and playing puzzle games.

Debbie Day


Debbie is a retired English teacher from the Midlands area. When she’s not at Sylvan, she enjoys watching football and being outdoors doing adventurous activities.

Pam Raley


Pam is one of our retired elementary school teachers. She specialized in early childhood and gifted/talented education when she worked in Jasper County. When she’s not at Sylvan, she enjoys cooking and reading at home.


Melissa Deloach

SAT/ACT - College Prep LIVE, Online Director/Professor

Melissa Deloach joined the Sylvan team in May 2019. By day she’s the Director of the Scholar’s Academy for Spartanburg County, but in the evenings and on Sundays, she manages our college prep program, including SAT/ACT prep and College Reading Strategies. Melissa holds degrees from Clemson University and Converse College. When she isn’t helping teens prepare for college either here or at the Scholar’s Academy, she enjoys reading and spending time with her family, especially her grandchildren.


Dr. Jeff French

SAT/ACT - College Prep LIVE, Online Professor

Dr. Jeff, as his Sylvan students call him, graduated from Furman University in 1995. He then held a variety of college-level roles as graduate student, program coordinator, and instructor for the University of South Carolina and Midlands Technical College while also serving as a zookeeper at the Riverbanks Zoo in Columbia. With a focus on genetics and ecology, Dr. French finished his graduate work in biology and currently serves as Chair of Biology and Assistant Dean of Science and Math at North Greenville University. In his “free time”, he enjoys preparing students for the SAT and ACT as a LIVE, online instructor for Sylvan.


Tracy Levi

SAT/ACT - College Prep LIVE, Online Instructor

Tracy Levi holds a bachelor’s degree in zoology and a master’s degree In civil engineering. For eleven years she served as a civil engineer in Florida, working primarily with storm water management and water quality programs. Since moving to Asheville, she has enjoyed teaching Hebrew and Judaica to religious school students and teaching reading and math at Sylvan. She also teaches SAT/ACT math through our LIVE, online classes. In her spare time, Tracy enjoys the company of her two daughters and outdoor activities like hiking and kayaking. She also has a passion for music and plays keyboard in a local band.

Start your child on the path to academic success today

Give us a call at (803) 832-4966 or fill out the form to discuss your child’s learning goals.


Loading testimonials…

Call us today: (888) 338-2283

Corporate Headquarters

502 Washington Avenue
Suite 400
Towson, MD 21204

(888) 338-2283