Science Department

MCMicah Chervin

Science Department Leader

Mr. Chervin holds a degree in Philosophy from the University of Maryland and a Masters in Secondary Science Education from Relay Graduate School of Education. Originally from Georgia, Mr. Chervin is an avid practitioner of Capoeira and a surfer in the Rockaways. In addition to a love of reading, Mr. Chervin enjoys language study, which is currently focused on Spanish and Portuguese.








JGJustin Gill

Science Department Coordinator

Mr. Gill grew up in White Plains, NY. He went to a small college north of Pittsburgh, PA called Allegheny and then continued his education at Binghamton University where he earned his master’s degree in cell and molecular biology. He spent the last three years in San Jose, California soaking up sunshine and exploring the San Francisco Bay Area but is happy to be back home on the east coast. Mr. Gill has a deep love of hip hop, enjoys playing video games, and always strives to live up to his inner Batman.






Staff PhotoTchnavia Merrick

Science Teacher

Ms. Merrick was born in Panama City, Panama but grew up in the Bedford Stuyvesant section of Brooklyn. She attended the Georgia Institute of Technology aka Georgia Tech where she studied chemistry and chemical engineering and continued her education there to earn her master's degree in chemistry. She loves research and is extremely passionate about encouraging young women and men of color to pursue a career in STEM fields.  After a career as a chemical engineer, she continued her education at NYU earning a master's degree in chemistry education.  Ms. Merrick loves learning, especially if it relates to science or culture which explains her love for traveling. She also loves engaging in science research during the summers, exploring the outdoors and swimming.




SBMolly Mowatt

Science Teacher

Ms. Mowatt is from a small town in the Poconos where she grew up being surrounded by family. She then went on to study Secondary Education with a focus in Biology at Penn State in State College, PA. After graduation, Ms. Mowatt taught at the Milton Hershey School for one year before finding out about MESA! She recently moved to NYC and is so excited to continue exploring our community. In her spare time she loves to listen to music, cook with friends, and tend to her collection of houseplants.






GMGrant Murray

Science Teacher

Murray, a recent graduate from Harvey Mudd College, is a second-year teacher from Annapolis, Maryland. They studied the chemistry of materials science in their undergraduate program where they spent three years researching applications of quantum physics in solar cells. Murray loves playing video games and watching NFL football. Outside of being a proud nerd, they also enjoy hiking, swimming, and weightlifting. Murray is comfortable being uncomfortable and believes that important personal growth comes from failing the right way.






JDTara Ridgedell

ELL Coordinator

Ms. Tara is from Atlanta, GA where she attended Georgia State University and received her undergraduate degree in International Studies. She then worked in Kenya for a women’s rights organization, traveling throughout the country to inform women of their rights and conducting peace and reconciliation talks. She then decided to return to GSU to get her Master’s Degree in Reading, Language, and Literacy. She has taught English Language Learners in both Atlanta and NYC. In her free time, she runs a community based graphic design and screen-printing business, goes to music shows, hangs out with her cat, Salsa, and eats.





SSStephanie Sa

Science Teacher & Upper House Co-Leader

Ms. Sa grew up on Long Island and attended Dartmouth College in New Hampshire. In college, she studied psychology and education, developed a deep love for the mountains and wilderness, and played lots of sports with her friends (her favorites being lacrosse and volleyball). After graduation, she moved to Massachusetts for four years to teach middle school math and earn her master's degree in teaching. Ms. Sa recently moved back to New York to be closer to her family, friends, dog, and the beach. She loves animals, reading, eating cheese, and exploring the outdoors. This year, Ms. Sa will be teaching psychology and she can’t wait to dive into deep discussions with her students.




MTMitch Talesfore

Science Teacher 

Mr. Talesfore (or Mr. T) is from the Bay Area of California. He went to college at Northeastern University in Boston, Massachusetts, after which he moved to Southern California for two years to attend the University of Southern California. However, it did not take long for him to realize that he missed the Northeast, and needed to come back. He loves being outdoors, exploring nature and geologizing with his trusty rock hammer, but also loves video games and watching basketball (and is unfortunately a Golden State fan). Being from a family of teachers inspired him to continue the tradition and become one himself, so that he can help students to reach their educational and lifelong goals. Ask him about his cats!