By dedicating their time, talent, and expertise to the Senior University program, these instructors provide Northwest Indiana seniors with opportunities to learn new skills and to see their communities from interesting new perspectives.
Senior University Instructors
Nicholas ("Nico") first joined Indiana University Northwest in 2017 as a visiting librarian for Coordinator of Library Instruction. Now he is Assistant Librarian for Teaching & Learning where he works with a team of other librarians to deliver instruction sessions for classes throughout campus with an emphasis on information literacy. His research interests include fake news and misinformation.
Previously, Nico was a reference librarian at Morton College in Cicero, Illinois, teaching instruction sessions and a project coordinator at Center for Research Libraries (CRL) in Chicago. He earned his Master of Library & Information Science from Dominican University and his Bachelor of Music Education from Saint Xavier University.
Billy is a respected, pianist, composer, educator, and producer. He has performed as a professional musician for the past 35 years, and in addition to performing with others, has led his own groups for much of that time. Billy has also written and produced music for several television commercials. He is also the former host of the radio show the "Billy Foster Jazz Zone" which aired on WGVE 88.7 FM in Gary.
Billy received a Bachelor of Science from Defiance College and a Master of Music from Roosevelt University, with additional study at New York University and private study with famed jazz pianist, Jaki Byard. As an educator, Billy is retired from 35 years as a Gary public school music teacher. He also served as jazz piano instructor at Valparaiso University from 1980 to 2014.
In addition to his private studio and Senior University workshops, Billy currently teaches piano at IU Northwest.
Linda is a retired accountant with a love of learning. She is the President of the Gary Historical & Cultural Society and teaches sessions on genealogy research for Senior University.
Hailing from Whiting, Indiana, Becky was a 1984 Academic All State Multi Sport Stand Out. She attended Montana State Billings where she was nominated as an Academic All American, team MVP. After college, Becky went to Australia for a year as a Rotary Scholar and led the charge for the Australian Women’s League. Becky has been inducted into to the Indiana Basketball Hall of Fame, Whiting High School Hall of Fame, nominated for the Montana State Billings Outstanding Alumni and Hall of Fame, and awarded as one of the top 50 athletes in Chicago based on State and National softball titles.
Becky has degrees in biology and communications and a master’s degree in Health Services. She works and volunteers as a consultant in the business field and has taught health, physical education, and recreation classes at Indiana University Northwest. She also enjoys coaching, training, and helping student athletes reach their full potential.
Tavetta is a public speaker, instructor, and published author on a mission to empower people to win in life! She is the President of Abundant Life Publications, a publishing and consulting company. She has published ten magazines and produced thirteen television programs. Tavetta is the published author of five books and contributing author of two books. Tavetta has 20 years of experience as an instructor and 30 years of public speaking and writing experience. She developed the “Write Through Grief” program to help others embrace their new normal. In addition to grief recovery, Tavetta provides instruction on business leadership. Her personal interests are writing and traveling.
Tatyana has been a resident of Northwest Indiana since she was in the third grade. After graduating from Portage High School in 2019, she enrolled as an undergraduate student at Indiana University Northwest. As the Social Work Intern for CURE, Tatyana leads sessions in the area of computers and technology for the Senior University program. After earning her Bachelor of Science in Social Work (anticipated in the spring of 2023), Tatyana hopes to continue to work with the community and to further her education. In her free time, she enjoys reading, vacationing, and spending time with family and friends
Brittany Taylor founded Taylor Tech Solutions LLC, formerly known as I Tech Teach You LLC, in the fall of 2017. She saw a need that was not being filled in the region. Grandparents and parents alike deserve to know how to take selfies and post on social media!
Brittany has been knowledgeable in the technology industry since 2001. She went to a very competitive high school and college and learned the fundamentals of computers and technology. Her skill set includes Java Script, Java, some coding, and she is fluent in video uploading. In addition to instructing for Senior University, Brittany also provides instruction at Oak Street Health and several other organizations in the region.
Deb is visual and art history educator with over 30 years of teaching experience. She has a master’s degree in interdisciplinary arts from Columbia College in Chicago and undergraduate degrees in art history, painting, and photography from Eastern Michigan University.
Chelsea (Stalling) Whittington is a native of Gary, IN and proud graduate of West Side High School (salutatorian), Howard University (B.A. Broadcast Journalism, Magna Cum Laude) and Purdue University (M.A. Organizational Communications, Summa Cum Laude). Chelsea’s career in communications spans more than 25 years having worked in non-profit, governmental, publishing, educational and telecommunications spaces. Most recently, Whittington served as the Director of External Affairs and Special Events for the Chicago Urban League. She continues to serve as an adjunct professor at Indiana University Northwest and Indiana Wesleyan University teaching courses in Business Communications, Social Networking and Special Event Planning. In Spring 2019, Whittington began operating her PR Consulting firm, C WHITT, on a full-time basis. There she develops public relations and social media strategies for clients as well as presents workshops and trainings on social media and public speaking. She is married to her husband Terrell, and they reside in Gary, Indiana.