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Middle School & High School

Scott Rockney
Associate Head of School / Middle and High School Principal

Scott Rockney joined Providence in 2016 after 10 years with  Oaks Christian School (Westlake Village, CA), where he served most recently as Middle School Principal. At Oaks, he worked very closely with the high school administration to ensure students were prepared for a successful academic experience in high school and college. Mr. Rockney played a major leadership role designing a new academic building at Oaks, researching physical architecture and its impact on student learning and school culture and best practices using space and design to improve student learning. 

Mr. Rockney holds a master’s degree in educational administration from California State University at Northridge and a bachelor’s degree in Spanish language and culture, also from CSU Northridge. Before going to Oaks Christian, he taught Spanish and served as dean of students in a large public high school in the Los Angeles Unified School District.

Scott and his wife, Sarah, are the parents of three children, all enrolled at Providence. 


Nate Alker
Middle School Science Teacher

Nate Alker graduated with a B.S. degree in business administration from San Diego State University and earned a teaching credential from Chapman University. After teaching middle school classes for a number of years in the Santa Ynez Valley, he joined the former Providence Hall faculty in 2011. In addition to teaching, Mr. Alker coaches varsity boys volleyball and leads the activities of the Science Club. He and his wife, Lindsay, are the parents of two children; the eldest is a Providence Preschooler.


max-headshotMax Beers
High School Foundations of the Christian Faith Teacher; Digital Media Teacher; Graphic Designer

Max Beers studied at Bethel Seminary and holds a B.A. degree in religion from Luther College. He joined the Providence faculty in 2015, after previously teaching at Thomas Edison High School in Minneapolis, Minnesota, where he was the technology integration coordinator. Besides teaching, he is responsible for the coordinated look and feel of all Providence materials.


Bentley

Sarah Bentley
High School Spanish Teacher; Technology Coordinator

Sarah Bentley earned a B.A. degree in Spanish from Azusa Pacific University and a Teaching Credential from Fresno Pacific University. She earned a masters degree in Spanish language and culture from the University of Salamanca, the oldest university in Europe. She was the on-site director of the Trinity University Semester in Spain program in Seville for two years, before joining the former Providence Hall faculty in 2011. 


Cord Christensen
Middle School Humanities & Latin Teacher

Cord Christensen earned a B.A. in English from the University of Hawaii and a teaching credential and M.A. in education from Chapman University. He joined the Providence faculty in 2017 after teaching middle school Bible and history at Oaks Christian School since 2002. He taught at Santa Barbara Christian School (now part of Providence) from 2001—2002.


 jdalyJames Daly
Middle and High School Art Teacher

James Daly earned a B.A. in studio art from Westmont College and a teaching credential and M.A. in education from the University of California Santa Barbara. An accomplished visual artist and photographer, he joined the former Providence Hall faculty in 2008. He and his wife, Carrie, are the parents of two children who attend Providence Preschool and Lower School.


ElwoodChris Elwood
High School Humanities Teacher

Chris Elwood earned B.A. degrees in both English and philosophy at Westmont College and a teaching credential at Chapman University. Prior to joining the former Providence Hall faculty in 2009, he was the head tennis coach at Westmont. He and his wife, Tabitha, are the parents of two Providence students.


Matt Eves
Middle School Engineering & High School Mathematics Teacher

Matt Eves holds a B.S. degree in mechanical engineering from the University of Southern California, and an MBA from Cal Poly San Luis Obispo. Since 2009 he has worked as a developer, consultant, and trainer for software companies in San Francisco and Michigan. Mr. Eves joins Providence in 2018 with a passion for the different engineering disciplines along with computer science and mathematics.  He, his wife, and two young daughters recently relocated back to the Santa Barbara area from Boulder, CO.


Taylor Randle Hurt
High School Science Teacher; Technology Coordinator

Taylor Randle Hurt earned a B.A. degree in chemistry and biochemistry from the University of California Santa Barbara through the College of Creative Studies. In addition, he was the first graduate of that college to complete a minor in science and math education at UCSB. He worked full time for a Christian non-profit organization (Cru, formerly Campus Crusade for Christ) serving one year at UCSB and one year in the Middle East. As a Robert Noyce Scholarship recipient, Mr. Hurt earned a teaching credential and a masters of education degree from UCSB. He joined the Providence faculty in 2013. He and his wife, Mary Patterson Hurt, who is the Providence Preschool worship leader, are the parents of a baby girl.


Susan Isaac
Director of Spiritual Life; Associate Dean of Students; Middle School Bible Teacher

Susan Isaac earned an M.A. in American studies from Pepperdine University and a B.A. in English from California State University at Northridge. She joined the Providence faculty in 2017 after teaching high school English at Oaks Christian School for eight years.


Matt LongMatt Long
Academic Dean

Matt Long came to Providence in 2016 from Valor Christian High School in Highlands Ranch, Colorado, where he led the academic support program for two years. He played an integral role in founding the Valor Tutoring Center, developing new support programs for all students, and overseeing the peer tutoring program. Since 2004, Mr. Long has worked in education in a variety of settings and roles, including public, private, and charter schools. He brings to Providence a passion for helping students develop a well-rounded skill set in order to reach their potential in the classroom, in the athletic arena, and in their future endeavors. He holds a masters degree in sports psychology from John F. Kennedy University and earned a masters degree in education and a bachelors degree in business administration from the University of Oregon. He and his wife, Robin, are the parents of two children; the eldest is a Providence Preschooler.


Rodney Meadth

Rodney Meadth
Dean of Students; Engineering Academy Director

Rodney Meadth holds a degree in aerospace engineering from RMIT University (Melbourne, Australia). An Australian by birth, he came to Providence in 2014 after serving as secondary principal at Quisqueya Christian School in Haiti. While at Quisqueya, he taught physics, calculus, geometry, structural engineering, and aerospace engineering. He is a Hansen Fellow with the Acton Institute. He and his wife, Brittany, are the parents of four sons, of whom three are Providence Lower School students.


Scott Mitchell
Physical Education Teacher / Outdoor Education Director

Scott Mitchell holds an M.S. degree in exercise science from the California University of Pennsylvania and a B.S. in sociology from UCLA, where he played football for the Bruins. He joined the Providence faculty in 2017. 


Hayley PentonHayley Penton
Director of College Counseling and Student Life

Hayley Penton came to Providence in 2016 from Oaks Christian School, where she served as student activities director for two years. During that time, she worked closely with faculty and administration to build a strong student leadership development program. Prior to working at Oaks Christian, Mrs. Penton volunteered as a Young Life leader for five years in Santa Barbara. She holds a B.A. degree in communication studies from Westmont College and a certificate of college counseling from the University of California San Diego. 


 B RottmanBruce Rottman
Humanities Department Chair; High School Humanities and Economics and Government Teacher; Libertas Scholars Program Director

Bruce Rottman earned a B.A. degree in history and secondary education teaching credential at Calvin College and an M.A. degree in international relations at San Francisco State University. He has taught in Christian and independent high schools since 1980, including Naples (Naples, FL) Christian Academy, Contra Costa Christian School (Walnut Creek, CA), Lynden Christian School (Lynden, WA), and Brookfield Academy (Brookfield, WI). He joined the former Providence Hall faculty in 2009. Mr. Rottman was the recipient of the NASDAQ Award presented to the top five economic educators in the nation in 2000 and was twice the recipient of awards presented by the Wisconsin Council on Economic Education. He lectures for the Foundation for Economic Education (FEE) and Young America’s Foundation (YAF). He is a Hansen Fellow with the Acton Institute.


Matthew Roy
Director of Performing Arts

Matthew Roy graduated from Westmont with a bachelor’s degree in piano performance before earning a master’s degree from Eastern Washington University. He returned to Santa Barbara in 2012 to pursue a Ph.D. in Musicology and will complete his degree with a dissertation on Nineteenth-Century Music and Childhood in 2018.

He brings a variety of musical skills to the position of Providence’s director of performing arts. As the music director of El Montecito Presbyterian Church, he has a wealth of experience in choral direction and vocal pedagogy. He is also a composer, arranger, and instrumentalist, performing on piano and organ as well as various folk instruments for the Folk Orchestra of Santa Barbara. In addition to spending time with his wife, Jess, and their two children, he enjoys urban hikes, foreign languages, hearty food, and dry humor.


Mrs. Allison SmelleyAllison Smelley
Middle School Mathematics Teacher

Allison Smelley earned a B.A. in sociology from Westmont College and graduated with honors. She also earned a California teaching credential through Westmont. Over the years, Mrs. Smelley has enjoyed three different stints as a teacher at the former Santa Barbara Christian School, most recently rejoining the faculty in 2012. She has also taught piano lessons for more than 25 years.


Steve Stokes
Athletic Director

Steve Stokes holds a degree in kinesiology from California State University, Dominguez Hills. He joined the Patriots coaching staff as varsity boys basketball coach in the 2014-2015 season. Prior to coming to Providence, Stokes was the associate head coach at Royal High School (Simi Valley) for four seasons. He has been coaching high school basketball since 2003, compiling over 250 career wins in the process. Coaching highlights include a CIF State Academic Championship, two CIF Championship Finalist appearances, two State Championship appearances (including an appearance in the 2013 California State Final Four), four-time league “Coach of the Year,” and having his team named LA Times “Program on the Rise.”


Luke SunukjianLSunukjian
High School Mathematics Teacher

Luke Sunukjian was a familiar face at Providence before joining the Upper School teaching faculty in 2016. He had previously coached JV girls volleyball for the Upper School.

Mr. Sunukjian was raised in Santa Barbara and grew to love playing volleyball while at San Marcos High School. He played on an elite-level club team while studying at Westmont. After completing a bachelor’s degree in business and economics, Sunukjian began his career of teaching math and coaching volleyball, first in southern California and then in Washington, D.C.  After completing a masters degree in mathematics from The George Washington University, Sunukjian and his family (wife Melanie and four children) moved back to Santa Barbara in 2011 and he taught math at San Marcos High School. His eldest daughter is enrolled in the Upper School and looks forward to someday having her dad as her math teacher.


Ms. Carri SvobodaCarri Svoboda
Middle School Humanities Teacher

Carri Svoboda earned a B.A. in English with honors from the University of California Santa Barbara in 1992. In 1993, she earned a single subject teaching credential in English from UCSB, where she was named Student Teacher of the Year. She is a Fellow of the South Coast Writing Project and enjoys continuing participation in teacher education and enrichment. Ms. Svoboda taught eighth-grade GATE classes at Santa Barbara Junior High for seven years before joining the former Santa Barbara Christian School faculty in 2000.

 


Sophie Troya
Associate Director of Student Life

Sophie Troya earned a bachelor’s degree in communication studies from Westmont College. After completing her degree, she worked in the Westmont admissions office for three years and developed a passion for the development of high school students. She joined the Providence staff in 2018. She and her husband, Derek, also serve in youth ministry in Santa Barbara. 


Emilee Hurlbert
Executive Assistant

Emilee Hurlbert earned a B.A. degree in music at Westmont College. After graduating, she worked in the Westmont Office of Alumni & Parent Relations and served as coordinator for student and young alumni outreach programs. She brought her administrative strength to her elementary alma mater, Heritage Christian Schools in Bakersfield, California, where she wore various hats, including stints as alumni coordinator, after-school program director, administrative assistant, and director of advancement and marketing. She joined Providence in 2016. Ms. Hurlbert runs the front office and assists the Head of School and the Associate Head of School.