About EE!

The Engaging Educator is a fierce group of dedicated ladies who are committed to helping others find their best, most unapologetic and confident voice, communication style and self.

We know you are full of ambition, ideas and goals – and we want to help you best express those AND achieve them with our brand of improv-based adventures.

Our goals are simple: we want you to leave our programs with a clearer idea of WHO you are and WHERE you want to be – and have actionable steps to get rolling on that path of awesomeness. We LOVE fun for fun’s sake – we also LOVE plans, ideas, action-items, progress and positive-risk-taking. Come grow with us!


In case you’re curious, here are SIX fun facts about your new friends at EE:

  1. 30k LOLs!

    From October 24th, 2012 to October 24th, 2017, we worked with over 30,000 students. That is A LOT of Yes, And…and a lot of laughing and emails…

  2. Our very first non-education client? Saks Fifth Avenue!

    “The Engaging Educator energy and insight not only helped us become better public speakers but allowed us to shake down our defenses and become a closer team.” – Saks Fifth Avenue, Men’s Division

  3. The largest waitlist for a class at a corporate office?

    50+ at Viacom

    “No matter what request I come to EE for, they have a solution. Every time I think, ‘This request is out there and they may not be able to help,’ not only do they have a solution, they also offer flexibility around that solution. EE has the acute ability to glean from a client what their need is and communicate it effectively in order to deliver the desired results.” – Learning Designer, Viacom International

  4. Shortest-lived class? Interview Skills.

    We ran it for almost a year with NO signups. Maybe it’s time to try again? #FailForward

  5. A masterclass in going with the flow…

    Founder Jen thought EE would simply be her side hustle for museum education work—she figured she could teach workshops and classes part time and be a full time museum professional. Years and a team later, here we are! WHEW.

  6. #FollowTheFear

  7. Can we get to 50?

    EE has held workshops in over 30 states, and is really excited to be asked to go to Hawaii or Alaska (AHEM Hint Hint: HIRE US!)


We do have the best team on the planet (not that we’re biased or anything…). Here are some specific fun things about each of our facilitators. Bios are stuffy and we’re NOT stuffy, so we asked the team their fave color, why they love teaching, and what it means, to them, to #FAILFORWARD. We can’t wait to get to know YOU better.

Jen Oleniczak Brown

FAVORITE COLOR

Anything jewel toned! My closet is BRIGHT.

FAVORITE part about teaching

When a student surprises herself!

If failure wasn’t possible, what would you do?

‘Failures’ for me are moments that are celebrated with some tears, ice cream and comfort food, bad TV and learning. If it wasn’t possible, I would actually have to carve out time to watch bad TV!

Jill Frutkin

FAVORITE COLOR

Wedgewood blue, although there are many interpretations of that color.

FAVORITE part about teaching

My favorite part about teaching is watching eyes light up in revelation – the moment when someone GETS IT because they are EXPERIENCING IT.

If failure wasn’t possible, what would you do?

If failure wasn’t possible…well it’s not, is it? We might not get the outcome we expected, but I think if we can be open to unforeseen outcome, failure isn’t possible.

Jen Glantz

FAVORITE COLOR

Magenta.

FAVORITE part about teaching

The laughter that fills the room.

If failure wasn’t possible, what would you do?

Be a famous author and public speaker.

Minna Taylor

FAVORITE COLOR

Azura.

FAVORITE part about teaching

Seeing people surprise themselves with what they are able to express when they dare you move into presence and embrace the fear.

If failure wasn’t possible, what would you do?

I can accomplish more knowing that failure is an option than I ever could if it didn’t exist.

Olive Persimmon

FAVORITE COLOR

Anything metallic. I own fifteen pairs of metallic shoes.

FAVORITE part about teaching

EVERYTHING.

If failure wasn’t possible, what would you do?

I already live my life this way!

Lawrese Brown

FAVORITE COLOR

Lavender.

FAVORITE part about teaching

Watching teens and adults become more creative, confident and carefree through play.

If failure wasn’t possible, what would you do?

I’d do everything I’m doing now—which is teaching and learning and spreading awareness about what’s possible to achieve as long as we stay committed to growing and developing!

Charly Simpson

FAVORITE COLOR

Yellow.

FAVORITE part about teaching

I love sharing and learning. As a teacher, I’m there to share insights that may support someone’s work or life, but I’m also there to learn. My students so often teach me and I love it.

If failure wasn’t possible, what would you do?

I’d be more vulnerable.

Molly Anne Coogan

FAVORITE COLOR

Blue!

FAVORITE part about teaching

Watching students take risk after risk and be totally vulnerable in a group of strangers. I always walk out of class feeling like I got a dose of courage juice by proxy just from watching my students go for it. They inspire me to be more like them by getting out of my comfort zone more often and just try!

If failure wasn’t possible, what would you do?

Oh man. Can I go back in time and be one of the Magnificent Seven and kick gymnastic butt at the Olympics? To be clear: I am NOT a gymnast. Otherwise I would say present day: get really into ballet or some sort of dance. Also to be clear: I am NOT a dancer.

Amy Nielson

FAVORITE COLOR

Chartreuse—as fun to say as it is beautiful, somewhere in between Golden Delicious and Granny Apple

FAVORITE part about teaching

My favorite part about teaching is witnessing an ah-ha moment… this could be when an idea really sinks in, when someone makes a discovery, or especially when they surprise us all, including themselves. Seeing someone shed their patterns or habits, step away from themselves, even just for a moment, and bring forth something new, is a very exciting thing.

If failure wasn’t possible, what would you do?

I’d buy a lottery ticket. But really, I’d try my hand at all the things I’d fantasized about when younger, like being an opera singer. And with both failure and money no longer a worry or excuse, Carnegie Hall, here I come!

Amanda Bruton

FAVORITE COLOR

Fuchsia—Fun to look at, fun to say.

FAVORITE part about teaching

I love watching my students surprise themselves and discover talents and capabilities they didn’t know they had, particularly when you know someone is stepping way outside of their comfort zone. That and LAUGHTER.

If failure wasn’t possible, what would you do?

I would travel the world making socially conscious comedic films. And I’d write about it too.

Jasmine Wilson

FAVORITE COLOR

Coral.

FAVORITE part about teaching

Learning about my students’ lives and watching them grow.

If failure wasn’t possible, what would you do?

I thought about this one, and if failure wasn’t possible, I probably wouldn’t do anything. The very human act of failing is what makes doing anything worthwhile. The satisfaction that comes when you succeed after failing is one of the best feelings in the world. Surmounting the challenge of failure also helps guide the discovery of what matters most in your life. If I knew that I wouldn’t fail, couldn’t fail, why try at all? Where’s the fun in that?

A Note from Jen

In 2012, I was working as an educator and performing Off-Broadway with my improv troupe. The side hustle was real – when I wasn’t onstage or teaching, I was running improv classes for non-actors, focusing in on public speaking, confidence, and listening skills. After too many sleepless nights answering student emails and begging friends to either cover a shift or show, I decided to take the leap and started The Engaging Educator, running Improv, Presentation Skills and Storytelling Classes for professionals. Working with a strong team of female facilitators, EE continued to grow in size, students and locations, and by 2015, the company was recognized by CBS as one of the top five places to take Improv Class in NYC, and the only program that very strictly did NOT train actors. By 2016 EE had conducted workshops in 27 states and opened to three locations in NYC, Los Angeles, and Winston Salem, NC. We had reached almost 30,000 students, ranging from museums, ideation stage and investor ready startups, high school students and students on the autism spectrum all the way to companies like Etsy, the Clinton Foundation, Viacom, Google, W Magazine and Food Network.

Then the 2016 election happened.

Know the saying, don’t get mad, get even? From that night forward, I decided we were going to do everything in our power to get even and help women get even. I’ve been the only woman in a crowd, both onstage and at networking nights for entrepreneurs. I’ve gotten asked to make coffee, or told that I was too loud, too emotional, too shrill, too emotionless. And that night, and the events that happened after, secured my decision to focus in on the 80-85% of our audience in classes. We were going to help more women find their voice, their communication style and their selves.

Because really, shouldn’t we all be the best version of ourselves?

Still focused on going to the gym for your brain, I still believe that improv is a lifestyle that needs to be embraced – it’s a choice to pay attention, a choice to listen, and a choice to keep an open mind. I’ve seen the amazing effects of improv on a woman’s confidence, voice and style – and from here on out, our efforts will be focused on helping women be the best, most authentic version of their unapologetic selves. We’ll still connect with coed programming in the corporate structure, and with our partners – our energies will be towards the women who got us here, and the women we need to help raise up to get them where they want to go.

Our story is always changing – much like yours should. We’re constantly pivoting, moving to the left, right and center when we need to. When I wanted to transition to being female-centric, a part of me was afraid at the business we might lose. A much larger part of me was excited about what we might gain, and the women we will help.

The mentality of the company has always been ‘fail forward’. If we fail, we get back up. If we fail forward, we get back up a little further ahead than we were when we fell.

And that’s all we’re trying to do, and help you do – move a little further forward every day. And take the fear with the possibility of greatness.

Since our story is to be continued – I’ll see you in this chapter and the next!

<3, Jen

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