Meet our Salinas Tutoring Staff


Great Teachers Inspire

Our tutors and staff in Salinas/Monterey consist of passionate educators who love inspiring children to succeed. Warm, caring and great at relating to kids, our tutors in Salinas 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 Salinas/Monterey!

  • Cary Swensen, Owner/Executive Director

    Cary Swensen

    Owner/Executive Director

    Cary Swensen has a BA in Education from Western Washington University and a MA in History from the University of Colorado, Boulder. She has worked for Sylvan Learning for 26 years before opening up her own Sylvan. She likes reading, music, and spending time with her family!
  • Jocelyne Trejo, Center Director

    Jocelyne Trejo

    Center Director

    Jocelyne was born and raised in California. She attended California State University, Monterey Bay where she obtained a BA in Psychology. Her future plans include obtaining her Masters and becoming a Psychiatrist. In her spare time, Jocelyne loves to read, go to the beach, and spend time with her friends and family.
  • Mia Ochoa, Center Assistant

    Mia Ochoa

    Center Assistant

    Mia was born and raised in California. She is currently attending Gonzales High School. In the future, she would like to attend UC Davis, and obtain a degree to become a Veterinarian. She loves to play Volleyball and Soccer during her free time. Mia’s filled with positive energy and loves company. She is excited to be working at Sylvan of Salinas, and she is proud to be part of this amazing team. 
  • Joe Petche, Tutor

    Joe Petche


    Joe has been a lecturer in the Department of Geology at San Jose State University since 2003. Although his research focuses primarily on magma chambers and structural geology, he has built a solid career in science education through his teaching and published works, which include a college-level textbook about prehistoric life and a USGS geologic map of Yosemite National Park. A tutor at the Salinas Sylvan Learning Center for over five years, Joe is especially proficient in math, science, writing, biology, chemistry, SAT/ACT/GRE prep, and general “homework help”. His hobbies include hiking, nature photography, and science writing.
  • Michael Ebel, Tutor

    Michael Ebel


    Michael Ebel was born and raised in California. He earned a California teaching credential in Art Education while attending Humboldt State University in the 1990s. Michael is a three-time Peace Corps Volunteer and served in the countries of Ghana, Kyrgyzstan, and the Republic of Georgia. In addition, he has taught English in Japan for two years and has just returned from teaching English in South Korea for the last 9 years. He enjoys spending time in nature and being creative at home working on different art projects.
  • Mary Rossi, Tutor

    Mary Rossi


    Mary was born and raised in the Eastern Sierra Mountains in California before moving to Monterey in 2013 to attend CSU Monterey Bay. She obtained her BA in Liberal Studies in 2018. Currently, she is working on her Master’s Degree in Education from UC Santa Cruz. Mary has been with Sylvan of Salinas/Monterey since 2016, serving as an office aide, Director of Education, and now online tutor. She especially enjoys teaching reading, writing, and study skills. When she isn’t tutoring and going to school, Mary loves to spend time outside with her two dogs, Chance and Dazey.
  • Tamara Duran, Tutor

    Tamara Duran


    Tamara was born and raised in Salinas, CA. She was inspired to pursue a career in education from various teachers she had from elementary school through college. She attended Monterey Peninsula College before transferring to Sacramento State University where she obtained a BA for Art Education in January 2018. Her future plans are to further her education by entering a teaching credentialing program. In her spare time, she enjoys reading, drawing, painting, and spending time with her friends and family.
  • Eduardo Garcia, Tutor

    Eduardo Garcia


    Eduardo was born and raised in Salinas, California. He attended UC Santa Cruz and graduated with a B.A. in Mathematics Education in 2019. He is currently furthering his teaching career by attending CSU Monterey Bay Masters + Credential program. He wishes to become a high school teacher to give back to the community because of how well Salinas treated him. Eduardo loves spending time with his dog Chloe, going on hikes, and playing tennis.
  • Mick Wiley, Tutor

    Mick Wiley


    Mick has had the opportunity to work in education for 21 years and holds a BA in Criminal Justice and a teaching credential from Cal State Fullerton. He taught reading and writing to students with dyslexia and other learning differences for thirteen years in Southern California. Mick works for a nonprofit serving schools in Santa Cruz County and has taught at Sylvan for 4.5 years. Jogging, biking, laughing, and traveling are among Mick’s favorite activities.
  • Kevin Alvarez, Center Assistant

    Kevin Alvarez

    Center Assistant

    Kevin was born and raised in Salinas, California. He’s currently attending Gonzales High School. In the future, he would like to acquire a degree to become a Detective. He loves to play sports during his free time. Kevin will solve any problem that comes his way. He is excited to be working at Sylvan of Salinas, and to be part of an amazing team and to help students along their journey to success!