Admissions Team

The Avenues admissions team is comprised of admissions professionals and former teachers whose goal is to ensure you have as easy a time navigating our admissions process as is possible. We will work closely with you to make sure you have all of the information you need to make the best possible decision for your child and your family. The admissions team includes:

DAVID BUCKWALD
Director of Admissions and Enrollment Management
david.buckwald@avenues.org

With 15 years of experience in highly selective college admissions, Dave brings his admissions expertise to the New York City independent school world joining Avenues in summer of 2018. Most recently, Dave served as one of the directors in the undergraduate admission office at Columbia University in the City of New York, overseeing international admissions and strategic initiatives. Previously, Dave was the director of admissions at Bates College, helping to bring in the most selective and diverse incoming class in Bates’ history (at that time). He started his admissions career at his alma mater, Fordham University in Bronx, NY.

 

melissa-hong MELISSA HONG
Director of Early Learning Center (N–K) and Grades 1–4 Admissions
mhong@avenues.org

Melissa grew up in New York City and attended the Trinity School. She received a B.A. in French and English at Tufts University (Medford, MA) and an M.A. in elementary education at Columbia University’s Teachers College (New York City). Melissa has taught in the New York City public school system, as well as at the American School in London. She has lived in London, Hong Kong and Singapore.

 

janie-ruiz-yangJANIE RUIZ YANG
Associate Director of Admissions, Early Learning Center (N–K) and Grades 1–4
jruizyang@avenues.org

Janie Ruiz Yang first joined Avenues in fall 2013 as head teacher for a Chinese section of kindergarten. She returned to Avenues in fall 2015 as the assistant director of admissions. Prior to coming to Avenues, Janie taught second and fourth grade at the Atlantic International School in Moscow, Russia, focusing on mixed proficiency English Language Learners (ELLs). She also taught Mandarin after school and founded a Chinese club, as well as writing, producing and directing a class play.

 

Leora KalikowLEORA KALIKOW
Associate Director of Admissions, Grades 5–12
lkalikow@avenues.org

Leora Kalikow joined Avenues in August 2017. Leora brings four years of experience in admissions at the Solomon Schechter School of Westchester, NY. After Solomon Schechter, Leora went into corporate marketing and event planning but then realized her passion and vocation were in schools and admissions. She earned a B.A. in journalism and mass communications from George Washington University in Washington, D.C. Leora has also lived and studied in Sydney, Australia, and Tel Aviv, Israel.

 

Allie BlumsteinALLIE BLUMSTEIN
Admissions Operations Manager
ablumstein@avenues.org

Allie joined Avenues in August 2017. She received a B.S. in accounting at the University of Delaware. Prior to coming to Avenues, Allie earned her CPA while working at KPMG and held roles in operations and finance. Most recently, Allie was the director of operations at a marketing platform for healthy brands.

 

Carla IsleyCARLA ISLEY
Admissions Coordinator
cisley@avenues.org

Born in New Jersey, Carla grew up in Buenos Aires and Hong Kong, where she attended international schools and developed a passion for global education. Prior to joining Avenues, Carla taught English and Spanish at a language school in Hong Kong. She earned a B.A. in Spanish and art history at Colgate University and an M.A. in Spanish literature at Syracuse University.

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