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Director & Staff


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  • Julia Dirkes-Jacks

    Julia Dirkes-Jacks began working at Grier in the Art and Student Life departments in 2021 and in 2022 stepped into the role of Director of Summer Camp.

    Julia graduated from Beloit College with a degree in Theatre Production, Theatre Performance, Literary Studies, and Creative Writing. After graduating she spent a year as an Americorp volunteer working in Chicago Public Schools with CityYear.

    During the school year Julia teaches drama classes in Acting, Stagecraft, Improv and Sketch Comedy, and Dramatic Literature. She also directs The Grier School’s theater productions. She advises Chess Club as well as co-advises the Gaming Club and never passes up the opportunity to chaperone a dance.

    A self-described “summer camp enthusiast” Julia has spent almost every summer of her life attending or employed at a summer camp. She has served as a camp videographer, office assistant,  teaching assistant, residential assistant, and activities director at various summer programs.

    Julia’s favorite camp activities include scavenger hunts, tie-dyeing, horseback riding, bonfires, and sing-a-longs. As a child, she once caught a goat during a camp rodeo, and as an adult, she once lost every single round of a “make the counselors laugh” competition because she thought every single joke was funny.

    Julia lives on campus and is available to respond to any situations that might arise for campers or staff both during the day and overnight.


Instructional Staff

Our instructional staff leads daily activities such as art, archery, swimming, music, drama, and language studies.

Grier Summer features instructional staff from Grier’s esteemed year-round faculty. They are supported during activities by counselors with a special interest in the topic or activity.

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  • Jocelyn Labriola Hrzic, Dance Instructor

    Joci is the Founder and Artistic Director of Fluidity Dance Company and has been the Director of Dance at Grier School for ten years. Additionally, she is the creator and Artistic Director of both the Grier Gala Performance and Workshop and Motion Dance Competition and Convention.

    After graduating from Point Park with a BA in Dance, Jocelyn studied on full scholarship at the renowned Steps on Broadway (NYC). During her professional career, she danced with Maxine Sherman’s Company (NYC), Theatre West Virginia (including a performance at the White House), and both Norwegian and Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines as Dance Captain and Line Captain.

    Jocelyn teaches master classes and choreographs for Penn State University, Point Park University, Muhlenberg University, LaRoche College, ACDFA, and Allegheny Ballet Company. In the summer months, she serves as Head of Dance for the Grier Summer Dance Intensive and also teaches for the Point Park University International Summer Program and the Allegheny Ballet Company Summer Program.

    Jocelyn’s choreography has been showcased at Leo’s Choreography Festival (Chicago), Dancing Under the Stars Choreography Festival (Palm Desert, CA), Koresh Artist Showcase (Philadelphia), Steps Professional Performance Lab (NYC), and Project Dance (NYC). Her choreography was also presented at the St. James Theatre in NYC for the Gypsy of the Year Performance.

    Jocelyn is married to Matt and has a daughter named Jillian.

  • Chrystal Coffelt-Wood, Riding Instructor

    Chrystal Coffelt-Wood came to Grier in Fall 2013 as Riding Director. She earned her Bachelor’s and Master’s Degree in Business Administration from Kutztown University where she was the Captain of the nationally ranked Equestrian Team for four years. As a member of the Kutztown Equestrian Team she won multiple IHSA (Intercollegiate Horse Show Association) Regional and Zone titles and 6 IHSA National Top 10's , including 4th place in Stock Seat Equitation and 5th place in Hunt Seat Equitation.

    Chrystal has over 20 years of experience and began as a professional trainer in 1999, when she took over as the manager of Grey Goose Farm in Oxford, PA. She worked closely with trainer Bruce Lachiusa. She learned to breed, break and train horses. She also grew as an instructor, developing successful competitive riders competing on the local and national level in Hunter Jumpers, Equitation and Dressage. Her students have had much success with top ribbons at the Sport Horse National Championships, Youth National Championships, Pony Finals, the National Horse Show in Harrisburg, PA and Devon. In 2009, one of Chrystal’s long time students was national champion in dressage at Sport Horse Nationals. In 2013, another one of Chrystal’s long time students was reserve national champion at Youth Nationals. Grey Goose Farm grew to become one of the most successful sport horse farms on the east coast with multiple horses winning USEF (United States Equestrian Federation) and USDF (United States Dressage Federation) National Horse of the Year Championships. Chrystal’s success with Grey Goose Farm lead to her being named to Who’s Who among business leaders.

    In 2005, Chrystal went back to school to obtain a teaching certification. In addition to her MBA, Chrystal has earned an Elementary Education and Business-Computer Information and Technology K-12 Certification. In 2007, after graduating from Kutztown University for the second time Chrystal became the head coach of the Penn State Berks Equestrian Team. In 2009, the PSU Berks Equestrian Team finished the fall semester 25 points ahead of the rest of the schools in their region, finishing the season as the IHSA Zone 3 Region 2 Reserve Champion Team with only 10 members.


Residential Staff Counselors

Grier Summer counselors are mostly college-aged women with experience and passion for working with children. Each counselor has a group of 6-10 campers whom they are responsible for. They live with their campers, enjoy meals together, and assist instructional staff during activities.

Our counselors work hard to make sure that each camper has the best experience possible. They do daily check-ins with their cabin and plan bonding activities for evenings.

House Mothers

During the school year, Grier students live with House Mothers who are responsible for their residential needs. Grier Summer is lucky to have some of those House Mothers join us as additional support for our campers.

While counselors provide youthful energy and lots of enthusiasm, our House Mothers, many of them have raised their own children, provide a mature nurturing presence for our campers. They are additional pairs of eyes and hands to make sure that our counselors are always supported in their important roles.


Grier Summer employs counselors with diverse backgrounds. We seek out college-aged young women who are pursuing degrees in education, social work, or the arts to live and work with our campers. When selecting the best group of counselors for each summer, we find the applicants whose interests match those of our campers. This allows for an excited atmosphere of passionate counselors and campers living, playing, learning, and creating together. All counselors are certified in CPR and first-aid, and many complete Lifeguard certification during our pre-service training week. Our counselors mode exemplary behavior, portray excellent work ethic, and bring enthusiasm and positivity to each day. These young women will supervise, nurture, educate, and inspire your campers during their stay at camp.
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Grier School

2522 Grier School Rd. | P.O. Box 308; Birmingham, PA 16686-0308
Phone: 814-684-3000 | Fax: 814-684-2177