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Meet Eliza Wagner Srestha of ES Tutoring & Consulting in Milton, MA, serving the south shore and Boston metro area

Today we’d like to introduce you to Eliza Wagner Srestha.

Eliza, can you briefly walk us through your story – how you started and how you got to where you are today.
As a young adult I wanted to be a journalist, and some of my early work experiences included working for Natural Health Magazine, writing for a newswire service, and freelance writing. After a few years of working as a journalist, I decided that becoming a teacher was a better fit for me, as it combined my passion for writing with my desire to help people and have a more social and interactive job. My first full time teaching position was as a seventh and eighth grade humanities teacher in Brooklyn, New York. In 2008, my husband and I moved to Quincy after I was offered a position at Milton Academy, where I taught middle school English and History. Working there was a great opportunity for me to hone my craft and learn more about differentiating instruction and teaching students with ADHD and learning disabilities. During my tenure at Milton, I pursued my Masters Degree part time over the course of three years, and in 2012 I received my Ed.M. in Curriculum and Teaching from Boston University. My son was born in 2013, and after my maternity leave I resumed full time teaching at Milton. That school year was exceptionally challenging for me. I had high standards for myself as a teacher, and I worked hard to meet the needs of all the learners in my classroom. At the same time, I yearned to be home with my son, and these two roles felt like they were at odds with each other. In the winter of 2014, as my son’s first birthday approached, I decided I no longer wanted to teach full time. That summer, I founded my company, ES Tutoring & Consulting. Since then, I have worked with middle and high school students as an academic and executive functioning coach. I love teaching students one-on-one and providing customized support based on each student’s learning style and skill needs, I also love being my own boss. Running my business has been very rewarding, and I love both the challenges and the flexibility it gives me. I am in the process of expanding my company so that I can offer a wider range of academic support services, including specialized reading instruction and K-12 tutoring in all academic content areas, as well as executive functioning and ADHD coaching. I will also be doing more consulting work with schools and nonprofits, and one of my longer term goals is to develop a charitable arm of ES Tutoring & Consulting so that I can support students of all financial backgrounds. I’m excited for these next steps for my company.

We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
Taking the leap at the beginning was the hardest part. I had never been self-employed before, and starting my own business felt risky. At the same time, I knew I had business acumen and the drive and determination to accomplish my goals. Initially I decided that it would be a bit of an experiment, and I looked at my first year in business as sort of a sabbatical year from the classroom, knowing that I could always go back to full time teaching. After my first year was successful, I continued on for another year. And then another. Now that I am well into my fourth year in business, I have gained a great deal of confidence and have a larger vision for myself and my company. Every step of growth still feels like a leap of faith though, especially as I tend to be cautious by nature. I also think that women are conditioned not to be risk-takers and are discouraged from cultivating the mettle needed to launch and grow a business. The more that I have networked with other women in business, the more I have been bolstered by their extraordinary support and encouragement, and the more empowered I have become. As women in business mentor each other, and as our cultural views on gender shift, women will increasingly feel brave and bold and skilled to work in whatever capacity they wish, whether for themselves or for others. But regardless of your gender, starting a business will always be a bumpy ride, and finding a community of support is a critical component in becoming successful.

So, as you know, we’re impressed with ES Tutoring & Consulting – tell our readers more, for example what you’re most proud of as a company and what sets you apart from others.
At ES Tutoring & Consulting, we are revolutionizing learning, one student at a time. Our goal is to empower students to understand themselves as learners in order to learn more effectively and efficiently. We offer individual and small group tutoring, ADHD coaching, curriculum consulting, parent coaching, and teacher training and professional development. What sets us apart is that our instruction is customized to each student’s needs, goals, and learning style; we do not use any pre-made or packaged curricula, and we cultivate strong relationships with our students. We also use a coaching model to help students take charge of their learning and gain the tools they need to succeed. Teaching students metacognitive skills sets them up to be strong and independent learners. Our coaching is also infused with a deep understanding of child development and psychology, enabling us to root out what motivates and blocks a student on a deeper level. Students who struggle in school generally have low self-esteem, and we help them better understand themselves and reframe the internalized stories they have developed about their capabilities. Understanding the interplay between learning and social-emotional growth equips us to be highly effective at creating customized support plans for our students. We bring these same skill sets to our parent coaching and our consulting work. Helping parents gain insight into their children and coaching teachers on how best to meet the needs of their students is a key piece of our work, and it is crucial to the success of struggling learners.

So, what’s next? Any big plans?
I am planning continued expansion of the ages, subjects and geographic areas my company serves, and I look forward to training and mentoring a talented team of teachers to work with me. As I hire more teachers to help me in my work with students, I will be able to focus more energy on parent coaching, running workshops, and consulting work. I want to cultivate deeper relationships with area schools and do more professional development and teacher training, as that will expand the reach of what I do and impact more students. I am also eager to develop a charitable arm of ES Tutoring & Consulting so that I can support students of all financial backgrounds.

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