Learning in South Boston

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After acing the SAT, students head to college and enter a huge variety of careers, from comedy to computer programming to creative design. Several of these former students sought to help others conquer the feared test at Boston Test Prep’s online-only study center. The staff designed the program to appeal to kids of the digital age—students can log on anytime, anywhere, and direct their own studies. Some might read through all the lessons and then work on practice quizzes, and others might leap right into the quizzes, pausing to link to lessons and slideshows on questions that stymie them, such as, "How many bears are there?" They’ll also learn tips on taking the test, such as mastering common question types, identifying tricks, and making smart guesses. As students work, a points system motivates them to hit a high score, much like in a video game.

2807 Summer St. 9th Floor
Boston,
MA
US

Bobby Martin, now the executive director at the nonprofit Piers Park Sailing Center, grew up with a sail line in his hand, touring the Delaware River and the waters surrounding Kent Island and St. Michael's in Maryland. He always knew sailing was in his blood, as he was raised in a family of boat builders and America's Cup competitors. He followed this passion throughout school and into a racing team at Boston University and earned a position as captain by his senior year. The passion for sailing shows through at Piers Park Sailing Center, which train sailors of all ages and ability levels including underserved youth and disabled students.

95 Marginal St
Boston,
MA
US

At A Beautiful You, board-certified plastic surgeon Dr. Elliot Lach leads a team of specialists in fostering youthful appearances with an arsenal of noninvasive treatments. Dr. Lach is the inventor of numerous types of lasers, including SmoothShapes, which helps to rid bodies of cellulite. The staff also wields lasers to vaporize any unwanted hair, tattoos, or sun spots marring the skin, and they also offer Vaser, as well as Laser lipo-sculpting and Botox. When not fending off wrinkles with dermal fillers or stop signs, the staff is readying clients for at-home maintenance with an inventory of skincare products from ZO Skin Health, Dermalogica, Obagi, and Vivité.

65 East India Row
Boston,
MA
US

Working as a laser hair-removal specialist, Carmen Vanderheiden heard a common sentiment from the clients who had tattoos: "Please, hit it. I want it gone." The Tataway founder told the Back Bay Patch that as many as 80% of these tattooed clients asked her not to shield their ink from the hair-zapping laser. Since opening her tattoo-removal parlor, Vanderheiden has found out why, listening keenly to the story beneath each inky regret. Some clients have told her that they're tired of a tattoo's design or its placement on their body. Others have confided that the tattoo feels like a stain from some painful time in their life.

These stories make no difference to Tataway's tattoo-removal chart. During free consultations, the clinically published Kirby-Desai scale tells Vanderheiden the number of laser treatments each client can expect based on skin type, lifestyle, the tattoo's pigments, location, and number of spelling errors. After each treatment, topical ointments and sterile dressing help sooth the skin and prevent infection.

123 South St
Boston,
MA
US

Fluent City's campuses train tongues in the basics and nuances of up to 10 languages, depending on location, through interactive group classes. Experienced teachers introduce groups of students to vocabulary, grammar, and pronunciation in a student's chosen language. Languages are divided based on students' incoming level of proficiency, and group courses run for a total of 20 hours. Although not included with the class, students can also meet with instructors in flexible private lessons tailored to each pupil's individual needs.

1 Faneuil Hall Square
Boston,
MA
US

AES Languages, or Adaptive Education Services, expands cultural horizons and crushes communication barriers with dynamic language programs for businesses and individual students. Experienced instructors teach tongues to pronounce delicate sonants and powerful plosives as they stretch minds toward fluency. Foreign-language book clubs and immersive trips to international locales boost familiarity with a country's language and customs and make navigating international conversation easier than paying a guide to make prewritten subtitles.

60 State Street
Boston,
MA
US