Faculty/Staff

Vyju Kadambi is the Founder and Director of Southwest Montessori Academy. 

With over 20 years of experience in Montessori schools, Vyju has taught Primary and Lower Elementary and has served as an Administrator for 11 years. She is a strong leader and is passionate about the Montessori pedagogy. She works with the staff to insure authenticity and excellence for Southwest Montessori Academy.

Vyju completed her Montessori Training in Lower Elementary and Administration from Houston Montessori Center and Early Childhood from MECA-Seton. Vyju has served as a Paraprofessional Teacher Trainer at both Seton Montessori Institute and United Montessori Schools of Indiana. She holds degrees in Computer Science from the University of Illinois at Chicago and is currently pursuing her Masters in Montessori Education from Xavier University. In addition, she is certified in Positive Discipline as a Parent and Teacher Educator.

Vyju also has served on numerous not-for-profit boards. She currently serves as the Vice President of Private Schools for United Montessori Schools of Indiana and on the Board of Directors at St. Mark’s Early Learners in Auburn, Indiana. In the past, she has served as a Board Member of Three Rivers Montessori School during its time of leadership transition in New Haven, Indiana.

Vyju is excited to have established a Montessori school that is committed to nurturing and inspiring a love of learning as each child prepares for life and establishing a family-school partnership that lasts.   

Vyju has grown three children and loves spending time with family, doing yoga and cooking.

 


Micheala Pattison is the Administrative Assistant at Southwest Montessori Academy. She graduated in December of 2017 with her Bachelor of Arts from Purdue University in Interpersonal and Organizational Communication with a minor in Public Relations. She is currently pursuing her Master of Arts from Ball State University in Public Relations. Her experience in education began when she was a senior in a traditional public high school as a Cadet Teacher working with 5th grade and as a Teaching Assistant during her study halls working with the 7th grade. She firmly believes in lifelong learning and wants to foster lifelong learning early on. Micheala also has worked in marketing and development for adult education as well as information technology at the university level. After being exposed to these various experiences, she is excited to be a part of the Southwest Montessori Academy community. 

When Karrin discovered the Montessori philosophy, she fell in love with it! She feels that it makes so much sense and wished that she would have been taught these concepts when she was a child. It is truly a blessing to see children internalize basic respect, grace and courtesy, and self-discipline. She loves being able to experience a child’s holistic growth over the course of three years.

Karrin is originally from Muncie and earned a Bachelors of Science in Business from Ball State in 2000. Upon graduating, Karrin moved to St. Louis to pursue a sales career in the events/hospitality field. She soon left her career and went to work at a Montessori preschool because she felt like she needed to fully use her God-given talents. In the twelve years since receiving her AMS Montessori credential, she has worked at Montessori schools near St. Louis, Indianapolis, and right here in Fort Wayne. She holds a nationally recognized Child Development Associate (CDA) credential and is also a Certified Positive Discipline Parent Educator and Classroom Educator.

She is so excited to be a part of Southwest Montessori Academy community. 

 Jessie has had a love for learning and teaching since she was very young. Jessie was homeschooled as a child and then went on to attend Miami University where she received her Bachelors of Science in Early Childhood Education in 2011.

Experiencing her first job opportunities fresh out of college; she realized the traditional school and daycare setting were not for her. After some research, She was led to Montessori! She completed her Montessori Training at Adrian Dominican Montessori Teacher Education Institute in Adrian, Michigan in May of 2015 while being a Classroom Assistant here at Southwest Montessori Academy.

She is currently a Masters in Montessori Education from Xavier University and could not be more excited about where her experiences have led her! She cannot wait to begin my 4th year here at Southwest Montessori Academy.

 Aubrie has always had a passion for working with children. She began her college experience as an Early Childhood Education major. She soon learned of the Montessori program and, driven by curiosity, decided to observe in the primary classrooms. She was so impressed by the methods practiced in the Montessori classrooms and the success of the students there that she knew she wanted to be a Montessori teacher. She loves the Montessori approach and wholeheartedly believes in the philosophy upon which it is based.

Aubrie is originally from Decatur, Indiana and recently moved to Fort Wayne this summer after getting married to her husband, Noah. She attended Xavier University in Cincinnati, Ohio and graduated with a Bachelors of Science in Montessori Education in May of 2017.

Aubrie is very excited to start her teaching career and to be a part of the Southwest Montessori Academy community!

 Lisa is originally from Iowa City, Iowa where she was born and raised. She moved to Indiana 15 years ago after completing her Montessori training in Infant/Toddler from the Montessori Education Center of the Rockies in Boulder, Colorado. She has been an Infant/Toddler Montessori teacher for 14 years. She is very excited to be working with primary-aged children and is looking forward to continuing her Montessori development and to be a part of the Southwest Montessori Academy community. 

Alexis Vandemark is the Early Care and After Care Provider. She is currently enrolled at Ivy Tech Community College of Indiana: Fort Wayne and is finishing her Associate of Science in Human Services. Her goal is to transfer to Indiana University-Purdue University Fort Wayne and finish a Bachelors of Arts in Human Services.

She loves working with the students here at Southwest Montessori Academy and feels honored to be able to learn and grow this year with our staff and our students.