The 2021 Virtual Exchange Academy will prepare 53 education and exchange leaders and practitioners to participate in the innovative and powerful field of virtual exchange. Selected through a competitive application process, participants come from 19 U.S. states and Washington, DC, and from five countries in the Middle East and North Africa and the Palestinian Territories. About one third of the group work with young people at the K-12/primary level, two thirds at the higher education/post-graduate level, and the rest work with young people of all ages. The Initiative is proud to support these leaders in their efforts to increase virtual exchange opportunities as part of internationalization (incorporating global education) programming at their school, institution, or organization.
2021 Virtual Exchange Academy Participants
Katherine Rose Adams | Georgia, U.S.
Assistant Professor, University of North Georgia
Mahmoud Assad | Palestinian Territories
Head of Mechanical and Mechatronics Engineering, An-Najah National University
Adana Austin | New York, U.S.
Director of Programs, Global Classroom, One to World
Nacereddine Benabdallah | Algeria
Assistant Professor, University of Souk-Ahras
Fella Benabed | Algeria
Associate Professor, Annaba University
Halima Benbouza | Algeria
Professor, Institute of Veterinary and Agronomic Sciences, University of Batna 1
Bianca Bennett | Washington, DC, U.S.
Manager, Global Studies, District of Columbia Public Schools
Aaron Bielenberg | California, U.S.
Independent Study Teacher, Pajaro Valley Unified School District Virtual Academy
Marisa Calder | Texas, U.S.
International Program Coordinator, Brainpower Connection High Schools
Grace Carter | Florida, U.S.
4-H Agent I, University of Florida’s Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, Duval County Extension
Sasha Cokuslu | Georgia, U.S.
Study Abroad Manager, Clayton State University
Tracy Coleman | Pennsylvania, U.S.
Experiential Digital Global Engagement (EDGE) Program Associate, The Pennsylvania State University
Shawn Dillard-Adabi | Alabama, U.S.
Assistant Director, Office of International Education, University of South Alabama
Ryan Donald | Illinois, U.S.
Study Abroad Specialist, Southern Illinois University Edwardsville
Ahmed Abdelmohsen Mohamed Ebrahim | Egypt
Operations Manager, Vocational Training and Employment Center (VTEC), Alexandria Business Association (ABA)
Mazhar Kadry Abdelwahab Abdelhalim ElShorbagi | Egypt
Assistant Professor of Philosophy, Deraya University
John Fay | Florida, U.S.
Executive Director, Resilience Inc.
Rachel Fitzgerald | Virginia, U.S.
Associate Director, Global Education Office, Virginia Tech
Nikki Geisler | Montana, U.S.
Programs Director, Montana World Affairs Council
Todd Lee Goen | Virginia, U.S.
Instructor of Communication; Internship Director; Director, Cultural Communication Competence in Benelux, Christopher Newport University
Shaima Gohar | Egypt
Demonstrator, Faculty of Arts, Damanhour University
Amina Hadjidj | Algeria
English as a Foreign Language (EFL) Teacher, Mohamed Boumezrag Secondary School
Ghada Hamila | Tunisia
English Language Instructor, The Higher Institute of Computing and Communication Techniques of Sousse, and the Faculty of Economic Sciences and Management of Sousse
Khaled Hamouid | Algeria
Assistant Professor, University of Batna 2
Miranda Hansen | Utah, U.S.
Assistant Director of Field Team, Ayusa
Melissa Hawkins | South Carolina, U.S.
Coordinator of Study Abroad and Special Programs, Clemson University Honors College
Brian Hibbs | Georgia, U.S.
Associate Professor of Education, Dalton State College
Lauren C. Johnson, Ph.D. | Georgia, U.S.
Assistant Dean and Associate Professor, College of Education, University of North Georgia
Stacy Kinion | Nevada, U.S.
International Programs Manager, Northern Nevada International Center
Aziza Koran | Algeria
Higher Education Teacher, Djilali Bounaama Khemis Miliana University
Farida Lebbal | Algeria
Senior Lecturer, University of Batna 2
Sonja Lind | California, U.S.
Director of Education Abroad, California State University, San Bernardino
Gerald Matua Amandu, Ph.D. | Oman
Assistant Professor, Sultan Qaboos University College of Nursing
Islem Megdiche | Tunisia
Lecturer in Mechanical Engineering, Higher Institute of Technological Studies of Beja
Shane Michael | Florida, U.S.
County Extension Director and 4-H Youth Development Agent, University of Florida, Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, Seminole County Extension
Mohammed Moummi | Algeria
Head of Erasmus+ Office, University of Mohamed Khider Biskra
Ahlam Muhtaseb | California, U.S.
Professor, California State University, San Bernardino
Tina J. Newton | California, U.S.
Associate Dean and Executive Director, California State University, San Bernardino
Rachel E. Noble | Kentucky, U.S.
Extension Specialist for 4-H Youth Development, University of Kentucky
Nadine Okla | Egypt
Director of Development, American University in Cairo
Samir Omara | Egypt
English Language Teacher, Teacher Trainer, and NileTESOL President (2021), Ministry of Education and Technical Education
Bryn Orum | Wisconsin, U.S.
Co-Director, Greater Madison Writing Project, University of Wisconsin-Madison
Molly Pencke | Washington, U.S.
Bezos Scholars Program Manager, Bezos Family Foundation
Zakarya Senouci | Algeria
Assistant Professor, University of Mohamed Khider Biskra
Vivian Shannon-Ramsey | Maryland, U.S.
Director of Field Education and Assistant Professor, Bowie State University
Imane Sifeddine | Morocco
High School Teacher, Moulay Rachid High School
Liesl Smith | Massachusetts, U.S.
Director of Global Education and International Student Support, Merrimack College
Femi Ogunsefunmi | Morocco
Master’s Student, Mohammed VI Polytechnic University
Housnia Tiana | Morocco
English as a Foreign Language (EFL) Teacher and Founder of Marrakesh Scottsdale Cultural Exchange Association
Hala Zahalqa | Palestinian Territories
Research and Teaching Assistant, An Najah National University
Kian Zare | Texas, U.S.
Senior Manager, Special Projects, The Houston Independent School District
Bilal Zennou | Algeria
Assistant Professor, University of Mohamed Khider Biskra
Nassim Zoghbi | Algeria
Assistant Professor, University Centre of Tipaza