Our Staff

At Techsplorers, each employee is handpicked from the best engineers, teachers, and students of higher education. Although our backgrounds are varied, we are united by our passion for science, technology, education, and the desire to nurture that same passion in the next generation.

Leadership & Development Team

Rodger Dalton

Founder & Chief Exploration Officer

BS Electrical Eng, NC State

MS Electrical Eng, Duke University

Bio | LinkedIN

Wendy Candler

Program Director & Lead Instructor

BS Mechanical Engineering, NC State


Dr. Gary Ybarra

Curriculum Advisor

ECE Professor (NC State)

Former Director of Undergrad Studies, ECE Dept (Duke)


Dr. Kevin Gard

Curriculum Advisor

Former ECE Professor (NC State)

Design Engineer (Analog Devices)

Bio | LinkedIN

Rudy Salas

Curriculum Advisor

ECE Lab Manager (NC State)

Director Autonomous Robot Workshop (NC State)


Dave Hoff

Curriculum Advisor & Music Score

Staff Engineer (Qualcomm)

Bio | LinkedIN

Richard Peters

Curriculum Advisor & Video Editor

Staff Engineer (Anuva)

Lead Instructors

Zaida Schuffert

BA Architectural Engineering, Oklahoma State University

Structural Engineer (Kirkpatrick Forest Curtis)

Instructor (Mathnasium)

Alex Hoppe

BS Aerospace Engineering, NC State

Barbara McNair

BS Biochemistry, Lehigh University

M.Ed. Elementary Education, Campbell University

Teacher (Angier & LaFayette Elem)

Michael McGhee

M.Ed. Technology Ed, NC State

Project Lead the Way Teacher (Wake County Schools)

Kevin Lloyd

BS Evironmental Technology,
NC State

MA Teaching, Duke

Science Teacher (Jordan HS)

Chelsey McElwee

BS Elementary Education, Elon

Teacher (McDougle Elementary)

John Croft

BS Chemistry, Birmingham-Southern College

Teacher (Lee County HS)

Teacher (United States Peace Corps, Southern Africa)

Bianca Mcghee

BS Technology, Engineering, Design Education, NC State

CTE Teacher (Middle Creek HS)

Melanie Swienski-Sadek

BS Elementary Ed & English, Forest Lake College

US Army Veteran

Teacher (Tar River Elem)

Erin Clancy

BS Elementary Education, Rhode Island College

Teacher (Fox Road Elem)

Rebecca Gurkin

BS Elementary Education, Western Michigan

M.Ed. Reading Education, Meredith

Teacher (Douglas Elem)

Assistant Instructors

Joshua Page

BS Technology, Eng, and Design Ed 2018, NC State

Erick Saunders

BS Environmental Eng 2018, NC State

Guste Rubikaite

BS Electrical Eng 2018, NC State

Chris Hoppe

BS Aerospace Eng 2020, NC State