At SAI we are proud of our highly qualified, well trained staff and most have been part of SAI for many years. SAI is as committed to our staff as we are to our mission and we know you will feel yourself in highly capable hands.
Every SAI program has a dedicated Admissions Counselor based at our California office, offering full admissions services, and an on-site Program Coordinator based at the host institution in Italy and in London. All of our on-site Italy staff are fluent in Italian, have lived or studied in the city in which they work and are trained by the Italy Program Director and US Directors. For 24 hour emergency contact click on Resources at the top of this page.
Take a moment to read our monthly Staff Spotlight feature.
|Michael Cruciano, President|
|William Johnson, Vice President|
|Edna Wilson, BSW, MSW Administration, Ed.D Education Vice President of Academic Affairs|
|Rodney Harris, MA in Business Administration Director of Research|
|Ben Strevens, MA International Education Director of Communications
Monthly SAI Staff Spotlight: Ben Strevens
|Micaela Cruciano Kliegl, Director of Program Development
|Molly Cain, Director of Institutional Development
Monthly SAI Staff Spotlight: Molly Cain
|Richard Young, International Relations Manager|
|Chiara Cruciano, MA International Relations Executive Assistant|
|Marilyn Etchell Admissions CounselorApicius International School of Hospitality Florence|
|Annie King Director of AdmissionsAdmissions Counselor Florence University of the Arts & John Cabot University Rome|
|Jamie Ronsheimer, Admissions Counselor, London, Milan, Sorrento, Siena and Italiaidea (Rome)
Monthly SAI Staff Spotlight: Jamie Ronsheimer
|Rose Maier, Student Visa Director|
|Sharon Basilin, Student Resources Coordinator|
|Denise Day, Business Administrator|
|Judy Guynn-Amsler, Business Coordinator|
|Dario Lorenzana, Web & Technology Administrator|
|Carol Capria, Office Manager|
|Heather Cruciano, HTH and Viva Coordinator|
|Lisa Guido, MA Art and Culture Management Director of Italy Programs, based in Rome|
|Jessica Lagomarsino, Rome Assistant Program Coordinator|
|Alessandra Rossi, Florence Program Coordinator|
|Camilla Fabiani, MA Communication Florence Assistant Program Coordinator|
|Danielle Moscou, Florence Internship Advisor & Housing Coordinator|
|Claudia Castaneda, Milan Program Coordinator|
|Juan Carlos Ruiz Coll, Siena Italian Studies Program Coordinator|
|Olga Stinga, Sorrento Program Coordinator|
|James Pohotsky, MA Screenwriting London Program Coordinator|
|Gaja, SAI Office Mascot|
At SAI we are proud of our highly qualified, well trained staff, many of whom have been with SAI for 10+ years! We think this sets SAI apart and makes it a very unique company. Our staff truly make SAI. We are, therefore, excited to announce our new “Staff Spotlight” feature. Each month we will be highlighting one of the members of our staff so that you can get to know us a little bit better.
Monthly Staff Spotlight: James Pohotsky
What’s your name and title:
James [Jamie] Pohotsky, London Programme Coordinator
How long have you been at SAI?
Nigh onto about 2 years.
What do you love most about working at SAI?
The students. I’ve lived in London for five years, so a lot of the knowledge that new arrivals need about living here is old hat to me– but there’s something very rewarding about relaying that information to my students and seeing them use it to become Londoners themselves. That process of discovery is equally a fantastic reminder to me of just how great my adopted home is, which can be a breath of fresh air when some days all one can think about is how awful that random man on the Tube who held onto the railing just too close to your face smelled at rush hour.
What is your favo[u]rite place you have ever visited and why?
I just returned from a week on the island of Hvar for my honeymoon and it was absolutely brilliant. I had never considered Croatia as a tourist destination prior to my partner’s suggestion, possibly due to my North American held stereotype regarding that region’s late 20th century history, but all those preconceived notions were proved incorrect. They’ve joined the EU recently, Hvar is extremely safe, extremely beautiful, always sunny, and, most importantly, pretty cheap at the moment! And the fact that it’s only a 2 hour plane ride + a ferry away doesn’t hurt either.
Do you have any memorable travelling stories to share?
Before I came to the UK in 2003, I despised Shakespeare. I found the writing antiquated, dull, and utterly inaccessible. I decided to attend my high school’s programme at the Royal Shakespeare Company mainly because spending another twelve weeks on a secluded campus in rural New Hampshire was a fate worse than death in my teenaged mind. But when I arrived in Stratford-Upon-Avon and started classes, it all suddenly clicked. Years later, I’ve now read nearly all of Shakespeare’s plays, seen more productions than I can count, and love the lyricism of the text. Moving here, even for only 12 weeks, unlocked it all.
What’s your favo[u]rite British food/meal?
I know it sounds absolutely awful of me, and it is a complete guilty pleasure, but I love Tesco’s ready made Chicken Korma. If I ever move back to the US, I will miss these wonderful ready meals (or TV dinners I guess one might call them stateside) that put US brands like Lean Cuisine to total shame. I also just love a good curry in general—in fact, a large number of allegedly “Indian” curries are actually British. When you eat a Chicken Tikka Masala, you’re eating a dish that was most likely conceived in Glasgow, Newcastle, or even possibly Birmingham, and not in India as the name may suggest.
What’s your favo[u]rite thing about British culture?
Theatre. The first time I came to the UK, I devoured more theatre than I thought possible. It amazed me just how much theatre there is all over this country—and how well known specific theatre companies become as they travel around the country. This term SAI London is seeing one of my all time favourite companies, Punchdrunk Theatricals, perform their new work “The Drowned Man” and having seen nearly all of their shows since they began in 2007, I cannot wait to share the experience of literally walking through a story as told across the five floors of a disused warehouse in Paddington with SAI students because it’s a kind of theatrical event that rarely happens in the US and it is unforgettable.
What is your best advice to students embarking on their first study abroad experience?
London is not as scary and different as you might think. The main reason I live here is that over my time as a study abroad student, it was very easy to feel at home. Yes, there are some significant cultural differences, and the water pressure can be as strong as a light autumn mist, but don’t stress yourself out too much about it all. It is a wonderful and surprisingly welcoming place, and, hey, you’ve already got most of the language down. Though, as a caveat, I do recommend a bit of research beforehand. I personally love Kate Fox’s book Watching the English– she’s quite funny and insightful at the same time and she certainly has made my assimilation much easier.
My second most important advice—LOOK BOTH WAYS WHEN YOU CROSS THE STREET. The UK decided that driving on the wrong side of the road was the correct thing to do, so just do what Sesame Street taught you many years ago and don’t assume that you know which direction the traffic is flowing.
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