Nyman, Mylene


Mylène “Mimi” Nyman is the Compass instructor for culinary and mosaics classes. A graduate of the University of Notre Dame, and veteran of the finance profession, Mylène made a career switch and broke into the culinary arts profession in 1997 when she opened “Chocolate by Mimi.” Within the realm of that business, Mimi began teaching chocolate candy making classes to children and adults. Over the last 13 years, Mimi’s cooking classes have expanded to include cheese-making, gingerbread decorating and baking, as she has taught dozens of cooking and confection classes for hundreds of students at Reston Community Center. Mimi brings years of restaurant experience to provide students with a full range of cooking, nutrition, safety, and hygiene education. She is also a merit badge counselor with the Boy Scouts of America and a Girl Scout Cadette Troop leader. Mimi loves to cook, especially in large quantities (why make one pie when the oven can hold eight!)

Mimi is also a passionate, accomplished mosaicist. She is a working artist who is credited with the highest-paid (brokered) mosaic sold by Rose Art Gallery in Reston and has taught many mosaic classes and camps. Her works are regularly shown at Rose Art Gallery and Franklin Park Arts Center. She is a member of the League of Reston Artists and assisted on a public work of art for the Reston Homeless Shelter. Mimi has mosaics on permanent display in churches and businesses and is currently working on two commissioned public works for Seneca Ridge Middle School. Mimi lives in Great Falls with her husband and two teen children.

  • “My son LOVED his cooking class with Mrs. Mimi! It was his absolute favorite of all the classes he took. Each week he was eager to attend her class and always spoke very highly of her! Great class, exceptional teacher.” -H.B. (Warrenton, VA)


  • “My two boys both have been in the cooking class with Mimi Nyman and we think very highly of her ability to let the kids have fun while still maintaining a safe environment. He is looking forward to getting back to the kitchen with Mimi Nyman soon. His apron is ready!” -L.I. (Arlington, VA)


  • “This was, by far, one of my daughter’s favorite classes and she really learned many things about cooking. I would highly recommend.” -L.S. (Annandale, VA)


  • “My son loved Mimi Nyman’s cooking class. He found her style to be warm and affirming, and he enjoyed each and every recipe!” -C.S. (Fairfax, VA)


  • “My daughter has taken many classes with Ms. Nyman at Compass. She has always said, and continues to say, she likes Ms. Nyman “a lot.” She learned a lot too.” -T.N. (Burke, VA)


  • “Mimi is a fantastic teacher! She is warm, welcoming, encouraging, and prepared. My kids learn new mosaic strategies and are positively supported as they try them out. Mimi also provides flexibility for students to make autonomous choices even as she provides them with advice and guidance. My children have all loved having her and usually take at least 1 class with her per semester.” -K.M. (Fairfax, VA)


  • “My daughter loved being with Mimi and has since we started with Compass and her classes in 2018. Mimi helped instill kitchen confidence and skills in my daughter.” -C.S. (Occoquan, VA)


  • “I had two girls take this cooking class from Mimi at different times. Mimi does an excellent job in reinforcing basic rules of the kitchen, and never hesitates to point out when one student may not be handling something correctly, but does it in such a way that the student understands the severity of a slip up in the kitchen. Her selection of recipes is excellent, both exploratory and healthy. My girls both tried foods they would not normally try, and for that, I credit Mimi. When my girls help me in the kitchen at home, they have clearly learned valuable lessons and are a real help to me!” -J.H. (Vienna, VA)


  • “Ms. Nyman was a fantastic instructor.” -P.K. (Fairfax, VA)


  • “My daughter loves Ms. Nyman. She says she is very strict, but in a positive and productive way. She always has funny jokes and makes sure the kids are entertained during free time. My daughter has taken many classes with her.” -L.C. (Alexandria, VA)