Esther Seo
Esther SeoCoordinator of International Operations
Esther has been involved in teaching in China since 2010 where she volunteered in English Camps. She joined Sias staff 8 years later to teach Conversational English and cross-cultural communication. She graduated from UC Irvine with a degree in Studio Arts and minor in Digital Art. She was born and raised in San Jose, CA., graduated with a B.A. from the University of California, Irvine, as a Studio Arts major: Digital Arts minor under the school of Fine Arts.

Esther has lived and traveled to over 10 different Asian countries, in which she was a graphics guest lecturer for a University in China. Spending a year and a half in Seoul, Korea as a communications and print design coordinator for an international, multi-cultural, English-speaking church.

She has a passion for getting involved with start-up projects and rejuvenating communication and structural process flow

Karen Edwards
Karen EdwardsInterview Team Leader
My journey to this location started with a trip my husband and I took to China. Keep in mind I went after years of coaxing and returned looking researching how to get my TESOL! Over the next three years, I completed by ENL licensure, taught STEM lessons on three short terms excursions through a company in Indianapolis and took another trip with my husband. Something was ignited in my heart and I knew I was called to teach in China.

I started teaching (virtually) at Sias in August 2020. I am teaching Oral English in person for the Spring semester! Getting to China during a pandemic is no easy feat. Oh the stories I could tell. It is been a wild ride; however, without reservation I can state every experience, moment, tear, frustration has been worth it!

Embrace the culture. You won’t agree with everything — that’s ok. You won’t like all the food — that’s ok. The important is that your life will be enriched and changed forever!

Aaron Vorbau
Aaron VorbauForeign Faculty Recruiter
Aaron grew up in Bay Area, California. His father worked as a pilot for commercial airlines and from a young age Aaron began traveling globally. While attending Cal Poly (SLO) he volunteered as a youth mentor and currently spends free time serving through programs. He met Rachael in 2007 shortly after both of them completed their MA degrees and within a year they were married and moved to China. They now have four children who consider Peter Hall faculty housing their “home” even though they are on the road 6+ months of the year outside of China.

Aaron is your first point of contact to express interest in teaching overseas. Connect here.

Xiaoying Liu
Xiaoying LiuAdministrator for Foreign Faculty Recruiting

Xiaoying grew up in Luoyang, China. With a great passion for exploring the world, she spent a year and a half studying and working in the UK. While abroad, she traveled to nearly a dozen countries in Europe. She enjoyed each of her trips, especially an adventure in Iceland. She really enjoys communicating with people from different cultures. Her favorite activities are traveling and listening to music.

Ask Xiaoying about qualifications to teach or visa questions

Gary Todd, PhD.
Gary Todd, PhD.In-House Historian

Gary grew up in Illinois where he lived through practically everything people associate with the 1960s. He earned a Ph.D. in American and Chinese history from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and first taught in China at Chengdu in 1991. In 2005 he and his wife Amy came to Sias where he has taught history ever since. His biggest project is a photographic record of museum artifacts and world-historical places. His 155,000+ photos are posted on Flickr and indexed at Three of his books dealing with Art of Ancient China are available for free in PDF from links at this website, and are also available on Kindle/Amazon. Henan University Press published his Henan: Focal Point of Chinese History. 

Ask Gary about China’s history and PhD research

Amy Todd
Amy ToddForeign Faculty Housing and Dining Coordinator
I was born and grew up in the Tuna Capital of the Philippines, General Santos City. But now, I’m an American Citizen. I’ve been working at Sias International University for almost 14 years. My first job was teaching Oral English and after 2 years I was hired as part-time Foreign Faculty Housing and Dining Coordinator and part-time Assisting the administrative work for Foreign Faculty. As the number of Foreign Teachers increased I became the full –time Housing and Dining Coordinator. So far, it is very fascinating to have a diverse community. It’s a bit challenging to work in a multicultural environment. It helps to embrace the positive or good vibes and connect yourself to a positive group of people and learn to accept cultural differences. Loving and enjoying your work is a plus. I’m married to Dr. Gary Lee Todd, who is employed at Sias also and teaching American and British History.

Ask Amy about housing and dining questions

Skye Li
Skye LiDirector of OIA Office
Ask Skye about Maternity Leave