Simulation Buzz is a network of learning innovations harnessing the power of computer simulation.  Our network of services is organized with the mission of strengthening individuals to be independent, productive members of the community. We seek innovative ways to meet our mission and work across industries such as human services, education, and business development. Our services are delivered through a hybrid of expert coaching, computer simulation, and customized curricula.  Simulation enables you to learn by doing in a safe environment where you can rehearse your skills. Based on principles of instructional design, we create engaging, experiential learning activities that accelerate your uptake of new skills and knowledge.  We customize simulation scenarios to meet your unique needs, whether professional, personal, academic, or skills based. Explore our website to learn more about how simulation can accelerate your learning.

Members of executive leadership are:

Mark Jacob, Chief Executive Officer

Throughout his 25-year career assisting young people to achieve their goals, Mark Jacob has worked with a diversified group of young people in a multitude of environments. His work has taken him all around the country. Although he has worked with adults and the elderly, he specializes in adolescents.  He has worked with young people in urban areas like the inner cities of New York, Miami, and Houston, and in the suburbs of Vermont, Southern California, and Central & Northern Florida. He has worked with young people in schools, residential settings, in runaway shelters, and at their homes. Mark is a father of three, and is a board member of the Council of Educators and Performing Arts Educators.  Learn more about Mark Jacob’s work at

Sylvia Dusart, Director of Strategic Partnerships

As Director of Strategic Partnerships, Sylvia maintains relationships with families, youth organizations. She is the Chief Operations Officer of Performing Arts Educators, a 501(c)3 nonprofit with a mission to inspire individuals and strengthen performing arts organizations by creating access to iconic venues. In this role, she provides major performance opportunities for pre-professional performing arts talent to appear in supportive, noncompetitive and internationally acclaimed venues. With years of experience as a Senior Paralegal and Sales Director for Choice Hotels, an international based hotel company, Sylvia’s experience spans multiple industries. As a mother of triplets, she serves on the Board at her children’s school and is active in her community, most recently serving as the President for International Moms Club. She currently serves as lead mentor for Teen MOPS, dedicating herself to meeting the needs of teenage mothers of preschoolers who are trying to fill the role of ‘mom’ while they are still growing up themselves.  Learn more about Sylvia Dusart’s work at

Members of the board are:

Stella, Johnson, Board President

Stella Johnson is an executive professional with a wealth of leadership experience in nonprofit settings. In her capacity as Executive Director for the Family Nurturing Center, she effectively aligns human, financial, and facility resources with the organizational vision. Ms. Johnson is known for her visionary leadership in developing new programs to enhance services available to families crisis situations such as those separated by domestic violence and child abuse.  She has a long history of creating dynamic, engaging professional learning programs for programs that serve youth and their families. Ms. Johnson founded the parent organization of Simulation Buzz, Community Partnerships, Inc , and is co-creator of PowerPlay simulation program.  Learn more about Stella Johnson’s work at

Carrie Straub, Ph.D., Board Member

As research director for the TeachLivE National Research Project at the University of Central Florida funded at $1.5M by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Dr. Carrie Straub is at the cutting edge of computer simulation technology in education.  Working with a talented team of educators, computer scientists, and researchers, she explores the unique advantages that computer simulation can bring to skill development.  Her research interests include the use of avatars to improve our ability to develop and sustain positive human relations.  Dr. Straub also co-founded the Jacob School, a private school for twice exceptional students in Seminole County, Florida and was school director of Stonesoup School, the oldest alternative boarding school in Florida. Her educational experience informs her simulation research in the educational technology space.  Learn more about Dr. Straub’s work at

Barbara VanHorn, Ph.D., Board Member

Barbara VanHorn is a clinical psychologist with research focus on the efficacy of technological resources in student learning. She graduated with a B.A., summa cum laude, from Rollins College, and earned her M.S. and Ph.D. from the University of North Texas, completing her clinical internship at the University of Miami/Jackson Memorial Medical Center. Dr. VanHorn is a professor of psychology at Indian River College and served as Chair of the Social Science Department for 5 years.  Dr. VanHorn is a member of the American Psychological Association and the Association for Psychological Science.


SimSocial and PowerPlay are trademarks of the Simulation Buzz network. Simulation Buzz learning experiences merge over 20 years of socio-communicative training with the cutting edge computer simulation technology of the software platform TLE TeachLivE at the University of Central Florida. Simulation Buzz is not affiliated with or endorsed by the University of Central Florida or TLE TeachLivE. For more information, check out our research.