About Tech Em Studios

Tech Em Studios is an after-school and homeschool technology program started in 2013 that offers classes, camps and training focused on applied computer science and computer-aided design. With courses in coding, 3D printing, software design and device building, Tech Em's instructors teach students at all levels the critical STEM-related skills required in the 21st century. By emphasizing art in technology (STEAM), Tech Em helps students understand the exciting and evolving relationship of technology and art. Furthermore, Tech Em offers practical classes and training for adults and the entire family to ensure everyone can efficiently leverage the current device-laden environment.

The Owners

Ashley Sigrest & Wray Mills

Ashley Sigrest Ph.D., Systems Engineer

Mother of three

19 years IT industry experience

Security programmer to Director at Fortune 200 company

Technology standards and governance

Academic research and presentations

Systems Engineering, Probability and statistics (UVA)

Wray Mills, Director of Instruction and Software Engineer

Father of three

Over 20 years IT industry experience, programmer to CTO

Over 10 years small business executive/owner experience

Research and development/mentoring (UVA)

Technology mentoring, training, instruction, and startup experience



Gabby DeFilippo


Gabby is a student at UVA studying Computer Science and Public Policy. In her free time, she enjoys reading and playing tennis. She loves teaching and learning about technology. Gabby is also passionate about getting more women and girls interested in STEM.


Chris Kefalas


Chris is a student at VCU who is currently studying Information Systems, with a focus on networking, and the Internet. After college, Chris wants to work with computers, and networks. He thinks it would be awesome to do something with security also. His hobbies include the outdoors especially when it's warm, technology, skiing, and of course video games. He is excited about the intersection of technology and education starting at a younger age. And finds the enthusiasm children have for it incredibly motivating.


Katie Morgan, M.Ed.

Operations Assistant & Tiny Tech Instructor

Katie has worked part-time in Operations at Tech Em since 2014. She has a BA in Psychology from UVa and a MEd in Educational Counseling from VCU and runs her own business as an Independent Educational Consultant helping students through the college application process. Katie started working at Tech Em after meeting Wray and discovering a shared passion for developing young minds and observing his unique way of enhancing their logic and reasoning abilities in addition to giving them applicable computer skills for the future. As the parent of three kids in elementary and high school, knowing how pervasive technology is in our lives, she appreciates that Tech Em Studios is promoting kids from casual users to masters of that technology.


Alex Noll


Alex is a senior at Glen Allen High School and the ACE Center at Highland Springs. He likes being able to help others improve their understanding of technology and its benefits. His hobbies include computers, electronics, and cars.


Rishi Patel


Rishi is a rising Senior at the Center for Information Technology at Deep Run High School. He loves creative technology and its applications, and that's part of why he's at Tech Em. Next year, he'll be undertaking a Capstone project in ITPM and is very excited about the endeavour. He is most passionate about aviation, loves to fly whenever he can, and wants to immerse himself in various fields of aerospace; he hopes to start with aerospace engineering at UVA or VT.


Ian Switzer


Ian is a senior at Maggie Walker. His favorite subjects are math and chemistry. His hobbies include programming, reading, tennis, and ping pong. He has joined the Tennis Team, Ping Pong Club, and Programming Club at school. His favorite programming language is Scratch, but he also likes Python and Java.