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Summer Enrichment


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Jenny Cort


founding family

Jenny is a certified elementary teacher but has enjoyed being a part-time stay-at-home mom since her children were born. Currently, she is a Kindergarten Paraprofessional for the Mattawan Consolidated school district. It’s great to be in the same building as her kids.

She has been part of the Summer Enrichment Program since the very beginning. She has enjoyed volunteering, working on staff, and now being the program coordinator. Theater was one of her favorite activities as a child and still is to this day. She was involved in theater throughout her schooling.
She believes theater inspires people to be goofy,  weird and fantastic. It gives people confidence that they might not find in other places.

Summer Enrichment is a place where you can experience those things! She hopes you can join us in this summers’ journey.


Marcie Kryka


sign language

Marcie works as a virtual School Social Worker for K12 schools during the academic year, and has a Master's Degree in Social Work. She enrolled in the Summer Enrichment Program as a student participant in 1997, and was hired to staff in 2003. Every year in the program has been a blessing, and she cannot imagine dedicating her summer to anything else.


She has taught sign language to the students since 2010, and is constantly amazed by how quickly young minds pick up even the most difficult sign language songs. She has spent her years on staff doing sign language, writing scripts, leading activities, directing shows, and, as of 2017, training on administrative duties. She has been Program Director since 2018. 


Her favorite thing about the program is that students feel comfortable being themselves and are celebrated for their individuality. She loves watching them step out of their comfort zones and challenge themselves while still being true to who they are. The program is a safe space, and watching the same kids come back year after year (sometimes with new friends in tow!) is proof that the program creates a long-lasting impact on the youth in the South Lyon community.

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Ben Machesky

staff lead

theatre 101

Ben Machesky is a student at Michigan State University, class of 2026. He has been a part of the Summer Enrichment Program as a student and volunteer since 2012 and was hired to staff in 2020. He found his passion for theatre and performing arts through this program.
As a child, Ben looked forward to the summer every year to be back in the Program. He created many bonds and friendships during his time with the program that are very important to him today. Ben’s favorite part of the program is the judgment-free, friendly environment where people can be their true selves.

Ben is majoring in music education and plans to teach music at the high school level after he graduates.

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Joey Abate


theatre 101

Joey Abate is a South Lyon High School Graduate (Class of 2023) and has been both student and volunteer for the Summer Enrichment Program since 2015. He has been on staff since 2021. One of his favorite hobbies is playing guitar in his ample free time.

The Summer Enrichment Program would be the highlight of Joey’s summer when he was a kid, due to the warm and welcoming environment, entertaining games, and most importantly ACTING!! Being able to enroll yourself as a character and being lost in your own world on stage, making the audience, “ooh” and aww” has always been a rewarding feeling for him. Joey loves being able to express himself freely, and acting on stage is the freedom the young Joey craved.


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Zac Desentz


theatre 101

Zac Desentz is from South Lyon East High School (Class of 2023) Zac spent his first summer with the Summer Enrichment Program in 2022 where he helped out as a high school volunteer. 2023 will be Zac’s second year with the Summer Enrichment Program and his first year as a staff member!

Last year Zac had a blast helping out with the kids and making sure they were having fun while learning cool new acting techniques and life lessons. Zac hopes that with the status as staff member, he will be able to show kids that there is lots of stuff to smile about when growing up and teach them a thing or two about acting and maybe sprinkle in some improv.

After graduating, Zac is planning on going to Savannah College of Art and Design to study Film and TV and continue his journey to be a full fledged voice actor. To keep himself occupied while he waits, Zac hangs out with his friends and family and keeps working at his voice acting skills by making voice over videos!



Carter Ponsock



Carter Ponsock is a South Lyon High School Graduate from the Class of 2024. Carter will be attending Wayne State University starting this fall semester to study pharmacy. Carter has been a part of the Summer Enrichment Program since 2012; with him volunteering since 2018. This will be Carter first year on staff.


Summer Enrichment was something Carter looked forward to every summer and inspired him to pursue theater for 3 years, choir for 1 year and band for 7 years with tuba and trombone. Carter hopes he can show his passion for music and theatre to all the students and staff.


Carter is ready for his first year on staff. He is very excited to give back to the same program he was in since he was young.

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Ethan Ponsock


sign language

Ethan attends University of Michigan Dearborn for business as a junior.  He has been involved with the Summer Enrichment Program since 2009 as a participant and a volunteer. Ethan has been a volunteer since he was in Middle School and has been on staff since 2020.


Summer Enrichment sparked his interest early on for learning American Sign Language. Over the years that interest grew and now he learns songs in sign language in his free time.


His favorite part of the program is watching the kids form new friendships, and how the program allows kids to be okay with who they are.  Learning scripts, sign language, songs, and dance are fun ways to spend a summer with friends. Having grown up with the program, he is ready to teach what he has learned and is excited to be working alongside all of the staff members.

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Cooper Schultz


theatre 101

Cooper Schultz first enrolled in the Summer Enrichment Program in 2009. He has been with the program every summer since. Cooper volunteered for the program for several seasons before being hired onto staff in 2019.
The Summer Enrichment Program played a huge part in Cooper’s childhood and kick-started his passion for acting. It has taught him a lot about himself, as well as many useful skills.


Cooper hopes to pass on all that he’s learned in order to make this summer the best it can be.


Abigail Smathers


sign language

Abigail Smathers is an Infant Mental Health Specialist with a Master's in Social Work, a dual title in Infant Mental Health, and Bachelor's degrees in both Spanish and Psychology. 


Abigail participated in the program as a student, volunteer, then staff from 2005-2019. In 2005 there was even a Spanish class! From the very beginning, she adored sign language (and Spanish) and credits the program for helping to inspire her love for learning about languages. She joined Marcie in teaching Sign Language from 2015-2019. 


Abigail is thrilled to return to the program that brought her so much joy in so many different capacities, and hopes that all students feel welcome and safe enough to be themselves whether it's their first year or a returning year!


Elliot Steger



Elliot Steger is a student at South Lyon East High School (class of 2026). He has been a part of the program since 2018 as both a participant and volunteer. 2024 will be Elliot's first year as a staff member—a goal he's had since he first started the program!


The Summer Enrichment Program helped Elliot discover his love of theatre and build the confidence to be on stage in front of others. He also loves meeting new people each year and being a part of an inclusive and supportive community. He is so excited to help students this year have the same awesome experience he's had at Summer Program!


Elliot is an active member of the South Lyon East drama program and Cantando Choir and also performs with the 3rd Act Theatre Company. He loves music and has been trained in percussion, piano, and voice. He spends his spare time and money exclusively on LEGO sets. 


Charlotte Thomas


sign language

Charlotte Thomas is a student at South Lyon High School (Class of 2025). She has been a part of the program since 2018 as both a student and volunteer. 2023 will be Charlotte's second year on staff and she can't wait! 


Being in the Summer Enrichment Program kick-started her confidence and love for being on stage in her high school theater. She has always looked forward to the program and the new friendships she makes in it. 


She can't wait to share this same love for theater!

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