Inspire, educate, and empower the next generation of engineers and entrepreneurs.
VineyardAppCamp was built on the belief that early acts of entrepreneurship and understanding of technology pay dividends down the road. All students have great app and website ideas; with mentorship to unlock their ideas, they can begin their journey. Through building their own app, students learn to think critically about a problem and identify ways to solve problems through technology.
There are many other tech camps out there. We wanted to build one where students can walk away with a tangible accomplishment. On top of our unique educational philosophy, we build 21st century, distributed-computing driven educational software to create an engaging online classroom environment and help students get the most out of class.
Meet the Team
Our team consists of former/current managers at large tech firms and successful startups, all graduates from top universities. Every one of our instructors were chosen based on three key criteria: their passion for education, their technical know-how, and their mentorship experience. We take into account the needs of our students holistically, and we aren’t satisfied until we see that our students have successfully established their own enduring relationship with tech and entrepreneurship.
Eliza is pursuing her master’s degree in computer science at Brown University, with a particular interest in computer vision and graphics. Eliza is interested in artistic applications of code, and has produced several 2D and 3D computer animations, both professionally and for fun. Outside the classroom, you can find Eliza picking apples for her family’s small business in rural Pennsylvania, serenading her cat with a Studio Ghibli score on the piano, or doing the occasional stand-up comedy routine. She knows what it’s like to struggle to find your place in the world of tech, and is very excited to work with students and help bring their unique ideas to life!
Bryan Yao is a sophomore studying computer science and cognitive science at the University of Pennsylvania. Out of his passion for software development, he helped found and lead an internationally competing team for the MATE Underwater Robotics Competition. He has participated in many hackathons, and he is always looking for more ways to actively give back to the programming community. Outside of the classroom, he enjoys cooking, practicing martial arts, and traveling. Bryan is excited to share his enthusiasm and past experiences with other aspiring tech entrepreneurs!
Andri Hail is a rising junior studying computer science at the University of Pennsylvania. He hails from the suburbs of Philadelphia, but was born in Switzerland. On campus, he is an active part of the Men’s Club Volleyball team and also showers his coding club students with fruit snacks at the elementary school he teaches at. Andri is an avid NBA follower and has a shrine for his one true love--the Sixers. He’s looking forward to teaching students over zoom, and getting them excited about the limitless opportunities that coding can offer.
William Yang is a junior at Brown University where he is pursuing a degree in Applied Math-Computer Science. William is passionate about educational equity, immigrant resources, and health and wellness. He is motivated to teach for VAC because it combines his passions and technical experience — including programming, entrepreneurship, and teaching — to help others learn, grow, and succeed. In his free time, he enjoys running, backpacking, chess, and spending quality time with friends and family.
Ziwen Zhou is a sophomore studying computer science and biology at Brown University. As a result of his involvement in research at the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, Ziwen is passionate about integrating technical ingenuity and solutions into healthcare. In his free time, he enjoys trail running, watching reruns of The Office, and all kinds of strategy games. He is an avid sports fan, proudly representing his favorite teams be it the Philadelphia Eagles, Iowa Hawkeyes, or FC Barcelona. Ziwen has over four years of teaching experience in multiple subjects and is always committed to helping students discover their passions and achieve excellence. He is thrilled to work with VAC to introduce students to the wonderful world of coding!
Lucas Gelfond is a Brown University student studying Computer-Science economics. He fell in love with teaching while leading and planning his high school's summer entrepreneurship intensive. At Brown, he's a member of Full Stack at Brown, building applications for the university community and is a teacher for Microsoft's TEALS programming, working as a lab assistant for AP Computer Science A at Pilgrim High School in Warwick, RI. He's passionate about helping students fall in love with STEM through socratic teaching and hands on work.
A native of the tri-state area, Jordan Taylor attended a public school in New Jersey and attended Brown University. After graduating Jordan worked for BCG, and then became Technical Architect at a unicorn startup.
Jordan is committed to helping students acquire technical and entrepreneurship knowledge. As a result of his vision, our program is hands on, results oriented, and built around creating a transformational experience that extends beyond camp. Whether helping a student launch an app on reddit, or prepare a business plan, Jordan knows that if you challenge a student and respect them — especially students with lower self esteem in the classroom — the result is that they grow impressively to earn that trust.
Jackie is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania and a former manager at J.P. Morgan and Visa. She then ran her own manufacturing business, where she overhauled operations by shifting core processes onto a custom-built web/mobile application.
Jackie also has decades-long experience of mentorship and tutoring. She attributes much of her business success to her precocious interest in technology, and the habits of mind she learned as a teacher and tutor.
Jackie is driven by a desire to see technical education expand. Because of her, our program is laser-focused on finding opportunities for helping those who don’t currently have access to technical curriculums or education.