Ms Victoria Louise Benson
Head of Secondary
Mrs Victoria Louise Benson graduated from the University of Liverpool with a degree in Mathematics and Management. She then went on to gain her teaching qualification and also completed the rigorous process of achieving advanced skills teacher status.
In 2011, Mrs Benson decided to move into the field of international education and has taught in three large international schools located in China and Italy.
In her role as the Head of Secondary, Mrs Benson is committed to ensuring the best possible learning experience for every student and strives to help each individual reach their full potential.
Mr Timothy William Noblett
Deputy Head of Secondary
Mr Timothy William Noblett graduated with a Bachelor Degree of Arts and Education from Monash University in 2009. He then began his teaching career in Melbourne before moving to another continent to join YCIS Chongqing in 2010. He has held many positions, most recently Deputy Head of Secondary, while continuing to teach IBDP Geography, History and CAS.
Mr Noblett believes that creating authentic learning experiences and opportunities for skills and theory to be applied in real-life circumstances is best exemplified through service learning.
Mr Noblett's hobbies include travelling and spending time with family and friends. He is an avid Australian rules football fan (and erstwhile player) and takes an interest in all sports.
Ms Helen Rebecca Morris Weir
Head of English Department & English Teacher
Ms Helen Rebecca Morris Weir graduated from the University of Glasgow in 2014 with a first-class honours degree in English Literature & Philosophy. She started her career in England after securing a teaching post through the prestigious Teach First graduate programme.
Ms Weir joined YCIS Chongqing in 2016 where she originally taught Lower Secondary. She has since progressed to teach IGCSE English as a First Language, English as a Second Language, IBDP English A and Theory of Knowledge. She is currently the Head of English.
Encouraging students to become life-long learners, and developing intrinsic motivation for language learning is at the heart of Ms Weir’s personal pedagogy. Outside of the classroom, she enjoys learning Chinese, keeping active and reading. She likes to be aware of current educational research as she regularly applies this to her teaching.
Mr Bert Laurence Hall
English Teacher & University Guidance Counsellor
Mr Bert Laurence Hall graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in English (cum laude) from the University of Maine in 2001. He went on to pursue a teaching degree after moving to Australia the following year, obtaining a Bachelor of Teaching with distinction from the University of Technology, Sydney. He began his teaching career at a local secondary school in the Central Coast region north of Sydney.
Mr Hall joined YCIS Chongqing in 2010 and has fulfilled a number of roles, currently serving as a University Guidance Officer and assisting students in their university and career aspirations while also teaching Secondary English.
In his spare time, Mr Hall enjoys participating in all manner of sports, including road cycling, skiing, and ice hockey. Writing, reading classic literature and spy fiction and hiking are some of his other hobbies.
Mr Adam Matthew Duckworth
Mr Adam Matthew Duckworth graduated from Lancaster University in 2002 and completed his master’s degree with Leicester University in 2019. He began his teaching career in England, teaching Humanities and EAL (English as an Additional Language) in Cornwall, Birmingham and London. During this time, he held the position of Head of History and led the Year 8 Humanities and English programme for newly arrived students.
Mr Duckworth moved to China in 2011 to help found an International Programme in Yantai. He then moved to Suzhou to lead the English department of a school, and his latest stop is YCIS Chongqing. He successfully helped led the first cohort of students to join the Harvard Mdoel United Nations in Beijing and joined the National High School Debate League of China.
Mr Duckworth’s hobbies include Thai boxing, hiking, camping and gardening. He also enjoys travelling to new places.
Mr Andrew John Messom
Mr Andrew John Messom has been teaching for 30 years in England, Korea and China, mainly teaching English as a Second Language (ESL). This year marked his 20th year teaching a combination of Secondary and Primary ESL students in China.
Mr Messom has been a part of the English Intensive Programme at YCIS Chongqing for a number of years. He believes that English should be learnt in context, alongside the home language, as the two languages will complement each. Skills and knowledge acquired in one language can be transferred to the other. Knowing two or more languages allows students to view the world in different perspectives.
Mr Messom has a keen interest in keeping fit in ways like exercising on his bike, running or playing badminton. He also likes going to the wonderful hot springs in Chongqing.
Ms Echo Jiang
Chinese Teacher/CAL Curriculum Leader
Ms Echo Jiang graduated with a master’s degree from Chongqing University in 2014. Her teaching career started in a high school in Serbia, while later she joined the International College of her alma mater as a part time teacher.
Ms Jiang joined YCIS Chongqing after gaining her master's degree as a Secondary Chinese Language teacher, and was promoted to CAL Curriculum Leader in 2018. She believes in lifelong learning, and uses inquiry learning to motivate students, so they are able to explore and think deeply. In her spare time, she enjoys painting and keeping fit.
Ms Murphy Zhang
Chinese Teacher & CFL Curriculum Leader
Ms Murphy Zhang graduated with a master's degree from Shaanxi Normal University in 2014. She gained her international experience at Patong Prathankiriwat School of Thailand. She joined YCIS Chongqing in 2014 and is currently the Secondary Chinese Language & Literature curriculum leader. She was also once awarded the YCEF Chinese High Potential teacher. She has rich teaching experience in IBDP, IGCSE and AS Level Chinese courses. She believes that teaching and learning Chinese is a lifelong journey of exploration, allowing students to learn more about themselves and the world.
Ms Cecilia Cheng
Ms Cecilia Cheng was born and raised in Chongqing. She holds a Bachelor Degree in Chinese as a Foreign Language and Master Degree of Chinese Teaching from Shanghai Jiaotong University. She has taught in a local secondary school in New Zealand as a Chinese Language teacher and various international schools in Shanghai. She joined YCIS Chongqing in 2014 as a Secondary Chinese Language teacher. She truly loves teaching Chinese language and culture, and she hopes to broaden students’ vision and knowledge of China and develop their understanding of how to be a global citizen.
Ms Vicky Wei
Ms Vicky Wei graduated with a bachelor's degree, majoring in Chinese Language and Literature, from Southwest University. After working as a Chinese Langauge teacher at a secondary school in Chengdu, she relocated to Singapore to teach Chinese Lanaguge at government secondary schools.
Ms Wei joined YCIS Chongqing in 2016 as a Chinese Language teacher. She believes that a solid cultural foundation, free will and sound personality are the essential elements in international citizens.
In her free time, Ms Wei likes playing guzheng, taking photography, reading and playing ball games. She constantly tries to think outside the box and hopes to become a person with inner kindness.
Ms Catherine Zou
Ms Catherine Zou holds a Master Degree on Educational Leadership from Framingham State University and a Bachelor Degree from Southwest University.
Ms Zou joined YCIS Chongqing in 2008 as a Chinese Language teacher in both primary and secondary sections. She has also been awarded the YCEF Chinese High Potential teacher. This year, she has taken on a new role - IBDP CAS co-ordinator.
Ms Zou provides a learning environment that is always lively, full of positive energy, and caters to students' interests. She believes that every student has his/her own characteristics, and considers helping students find their own unique learning methods very important.
Ms Zou loves travelling, taking photos and painting, which allows her to appreciate the beauty of life.
Ms Kyeungwon Lee
Ms Kyeungwon Lee earned her Bachelor's Degree in Philosophy and Korean Literature from Yonsei University in 2003, and her Master's Degree in Theater Play from Hanyang University in 2007. In 2020, she received another Master's Degree, this time in clinical psychology from Hanyang Cyber University's Graduate School. She has worked as an IBDP Korean A teacher for five years at an international school in Shanghai.
Ms Lee joined YCIS Chongqing in 2019 as a Korean teacher. She believes that learning language and literature contains two major elements: one is student's own conscious grasp of his/her preferences and thoughts, and the other is the way of expressing the preferences and thoughts logically and coherently.
Ms Lee enjoys making soap, in which she thinks focusing on a simple and pure process allows her to find inner peace.
Mr Christopher Michael Sewards
Head of Maths Department & Maths Teacher
Mr Christopher Michael Sewards graduated from the University of Sheffield with a mathematics degree in 2003. He then completed his PGCE (Postgraduate Certificate in Education) and taught for two years in England before heading off to Colombia for his first international post. During his time in South America, he worked as the Head of Maths Department.
Mr Sewards has experience working in Istanbul, Milan and Rio De Janeiro. He joined YCIS Chongqing in 2020 as the Head of Maths Department. He is passionate about learning and he regularly reads about and trials new ideas that help students succeed academically. He believes that all students can succeed in mathematics.
Mr Sewards enjoys playing sports, going for walks and spending time with his family.
Mr Jacob Andrew Benson
Maths & PE Teacher
Mr Jacob Andrew Benson graduated with honours from Arizona State University in 2015. He then went on to pursue his master’s degree in secondary education, which he received in 2017 from Grand Canyon University. Prior to joining YCIS Chongqing, he had taught in Zhuhai, Vietnam, Thailand and the United States.
Mr Benson currently teaches Mathematics and Physical education at YCIS Chonqing. His teaching philosophy puts students’ ability to logically and critically think at the forefront of each and every lesson. As a teacher of multiple subjects and ages, he also greatly believes in the importance of cross-curricular and age collaboration.
In his spare time, Mr Benson enjoys exercising, playing sports, solving puzzles, and reading.
Ms Summer Zang
Ms Summer Zang graduated with a Bachelor's Degree in Mathematics and Applied Mathematics from Yantai University in 2009 and a Master Degree of Education from La Trobe University in Australia in 2012.
Ms Zang joined YCIS Chongqing in 2016 as a Secondary Maths teacher, teaching students from Year 7 to 13. She focuses on training students to be rigorous and precise. She also inspires and encourages each student to think critically, creatively and connectively.
Ms Zang’s hobbies are music and photography. She plays the piano and is studying photography.
Mr Faisal Hassan
Technology for Learning Leader & Computer Science Teacher
Mr Faisal Hassan graduated with a bachelor of science degree from Glasgow Caledonian University. He began his teaching career in a Scottish based school before moving to London. He has taught Computer Science for 14 years. He has also served as the Head of Faculty (Computer Science, ICT and Business Studies) during this time.
Mr Hassan joined YCIS Chongqing as EdTech Co-ordinator and Computer Science Teacher. He is passionate about technology and continues to expand his learning so as to always be informed of the most recent developments in the fast-paced technology sector, and be able to pass on new developments to his students and colleagues. He also continues to provide opportunities for students to gain further qualifications. Besides teaching, he runs co-curricular activities such as robotics, bakes and keeps fit through playing sports and attending the gym.
Mr Darie Ilies
Mr Darie Ilies earned a Phd in Economics from the Babes Bolyai University in 2008. After teaching undergraduate Economics for a couple of years, he began his international teaching career in Shanghai. He then moved to Ho Chi Minh City where he taught Economics for another seven years.
Mr Ilies joined YCIS Chongqing in 2020 as an Economics and Humanities teacher. He believes learning takes place inside and outside the classroom, and empowers students with more than knowledge, giving them the desire and tools to be lifelong learners. As a teacher, his goal is to instill a love and passion for learning in his students, so they pursue inquiry on their own.
Mr Ilies' hobbies include technology and keeping updated on scientific progress in various fields, as well as keeping fit by attending the gym.
Ms Amy Elizabeth Ziegenbein
Ms Amy Elizabeth Ziegenbein graduated with a Master in Egyptology from Macquarie University in 2013. She spent two years teaching English and History at the Nobel School in England and four years as the Head of Humanities at Newton British Academy in Qatar. She joined YCIS Chongqing in 2019 as a member of the Humanities department.
Ms Ziegenbein believes that studying history is essential to understand our place in the world and where we came from. She places a strong emphasis on creativity in learning, and hopes to inspire her students to learn about the past to help them understand their place in the future.
Ms Ziegenbein's hobbies include reading, travelling and dancing.
Mr Kenneth Edward Sharp
Humanities Higher Level Teaching Assistant
Mr Kenneth Edward Sharp received a Master in History from the University of Pennsylvania and a Bachelor in History and English Literature from University of California, Berkeley. He has taught at both secondary and university levels. A Benjamin Franklin Fellow at the University of Pennsylvania and later a Provost Fellow at the University of California, Davis, he has conducted extensive research into the intellectual history of early modern science in Europe. Prior to coming to YCIS Chongqing, he taught at the graduate level in the University of Science and Technology of China, preparing masters students for participation in the international scientific community through academic and professional-level English courses. He joined the school in 2020 and is supporting the Humanities department as a Higher Level Teaching Assistant.
Mr Alvaro Door Sandic
Head of Science Department & Science Teacher
Mr Alvaro Door Sandic has a wealth of qualifications, including a District of Columbia Teaching License, Bachelor of Science in Food Engineering, Master of Science in Environmental Science and Natural Resources, Master of Arts in Higher Education, Master of Management in Education, and Master in Science Education from Montana State University. He joined YCIS Chongqing in 2015 as a Science teacher and is currently the Head of the Secondary Science department. He has over 16 years of teaching experience in a wide variety of scientific subjects and examination syllabus. On the lighter side, he enjoys reading, running, and spending time with his family.
Ms Kirsten Louise Chapman
Ms Kirsten Louise Chapman graduated from the University of Melbourne with a bachelor’s degree in Science and Health Science and a master’s degree in Education. Before changing her career path, Ms Chapman worked in retail management industry, and ran her own business as a personal trainer in naturopathy.
Ms Chapman’s first international post was at YCIS Qingdao and in 2020, she transferred to YCIS Chongqing. Her aim is to develop a love of Science for all her students, in addition to equipping them with a level of scientific literacy that will enable them to determine fact from fiction and continue to question what they see and read.
Ms Chapman has competed in rowing for 25 years, so she enjoys keeping fit via running and weight training. She also likes to spend her spare time working out the best restaurants in the area she lives and planning her next holiday destination.
Mr Alexandre Frohlich
Mr Alexandre Frohlich has a bachelor’s degree in Physics from the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro (UFRJ) and a master’s degree in Science from Missouri S&T University. He has over 20 years of experience teaching Physics and Mathematics. His teaching journey has taken him to Brazil, the United States, Panama, and China.
After spending two years in Shenzhen, Mr Frohlich and his family were ready to dive into a more traditional Chinese culture, joining YCIS Chongqing in 2020. He is an enthusiast in the use of technology as a tool to improve the communication and the teaching-learning experience in lessons. He runs paperless classrooms with a blended flipped inquiry-based approach. Technology is intensively used in his classes as he believes that it is essential to help our youth grow into responsible digital citizens.
Mr Jeffrey Scott Vukovich
Music Director & Music Teacher
Mr Jeffrey Scott Vukovich graduated from Illinois State University, and received a Bachelor Degree in Music Education with a Vocal Emphasis. He has been teaching music in China for over ten years, spending the first five at a private school in Shanghai, before becoming the Secondary Music Teacher at YCIS Chongqing.
One of his favorite things about teaching music is seeing students develop into young musicians with competent composing and performing skills that they never knew they had.
Music has given Mr Vukovich the opportunity to sing in world famous locations including the Chicago Symphony Center, Carnegie Hall, Notre Dame and the Verona Colosseum. He hopes that music can also bring YCIS Chongqing students great experiences, new opportunities, and a well-rounded lifestyle.
Mr Martin Duncan Wragg
Athletic Director, CCA Co-ordinator & PE Teacher
Mr Martin Duncan Wragg did not take a usual route into teaching. He served in the Royal Air Force for six years, before leaving to pursue his passion for sport and education. He graduated with an honours degree in physical education from the University of Bedfordshire in 2013 and began teaching PE in England.
Mr Wragg then accepted a job as the Head of PE at a British school in Saudi Arabia where he spent six years. During his time in Saudi Arabia he completed a master’s degree in educational leadership and management from the University of Nottingham, with an aim to take on more responsibility in the pursuit of curriculum innovation and 21st century learning. His latest position is a PE teacher, the Athletic Director as well as the CCA Co-ordinator at YCIS Chongqing starting from 2020.
Ms Christin Marie Nice
Primary & Secondary Visual Art Teacher
Ms Christin Marie Nice graduated from the University of Delaware in 2016 with a bachelor’s degree in fine arts. She also achieved a PGCE (Post Graduate Certificate in Education) from the University of Sunderland while working as a Secondary Visual Arts teacher in Japan.
Ms Nice joined YCIS Chongqing in 2020 as a Secondary Visual Arts teacher. She believes in inquiry-based learning, allowing students to experiment with new mediums and to form their own opinions about the art world. She believes that every student has the potential to be successful and engaged in visual arts when given the opportunity to try new things and play to their strengths.
Ms Nice’s own artwork consists of abstract paintings and wood and steel sculpture, which she enjoys creating in her free time.
Mr Sixtus Ogbaji Ugama
Mr Sixtus Ogbaji Ugama graduated from Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria, Nigeria with a bachelor’s degree in English Language and Arts Education. He has taught in various international schools in Africa, while also spending time in England.
In 2018 Mr Ugama made his way to China, working as the Head of English at Wuhan Ulink College of China Optics Valley. He joined YCIS Chongqing in 2020, sharing a wide range of expertise through being an accredited Cambridge IGCSE first and second language examiner of examination papers. He believes that facilitating an interactive and international minded classroom engenders creativity in thoughts and writing.
When Mr Ugama is not teaching, he watches premier league football and Formula 1, and also enjoys discussing international politics.