2017 Urban Education DC Winter Seminar Students

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Dani Aron-Schiavone '17
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Samra Asghedom '17

Samra Asghedom is a senior majoring in Public Policy and minoring in History.  Hailing from Springfield, Virginia [Northern VA], she is excited to further explore urban education policy in DC. In the past, Samra has interned with Gerry Hyland, the former Mount Vernon Supervisor in Fairfax County and with PerryUndem Research/Communications, a small policy research firm. On campus, she is a member of the Club Lacrosse team, She's the First, Vice-President of the One Tribe Place Hall Council, a Peer Advisor with the Office of Academic Advising, a tutor for College Partnership for Kids and is about to start working at the Office of First Year Experience as part of The History of New Student Programs at William & Mary Team. She has also studied abroad with William & Mary in Cadiz, Spain in the summer of 2014. In her spare time, she likes to read, jam out to music in her room, and [badly] play intramural sports. After graduation, she would like to spend some time traveling but ultimately wants to end up in Washington D.C. working in public policy. 

Laini Boyd '18

Laini Boyd is a Junior completing a major in Government and minor in Education Studies with a concentration in Policy & Equity. Since her first semester at the College, she has served as a tutor and mentor to local middle school students. She also has served as the Class of 2018 President since Fall '15 and supports first-year students as a Parent & Family Orientation Aide (Summer '15 and Summer '16) and as the Community First-Year Initiatives Director (Spring '15-).  She spent the past summer as a William & Mary DC Summer Institute Fellow studying political polarization in American Politics and interning at DC Public Schools as the Marketing and Community Outreach Intern for the Out of School Time Programs Team. She is currently interning with the Department of State and presents the story of Fulbrighters to program stakeholders as a Storytelling and Marketing Intern in the Office of Academic Exchange Programs. She has always been interested in learning about practices in education and education policy in an academic setting and cannot wait to broaden herunderstanding of education and education policy in the nation's capital.

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Jenna Brown '19

Jenna is a sophomore at William & Mary. She intends to double major in Public Policy and Economics. On campus, she is involved in the Tribe Ambassador program, tutoring with College Partnership for Kids, and in Greek life. This past summer she returned to her hometown of Richmond, VA to intern at Dominion Virginia Power in the Regional Operations Center. Although she doesn’t know exactly what she wants to do after graduation, she is excited to explore the policies of education in DC this winter.

Allie Cohen '17

Alison Cohen is a senior at the College majoring in Global Governance and Community Engagement. She is from Arlington, VA. On campus, she works as an Interviewer in the Admissions office and is involved in Kappa Delta sorority and Humans of William & Mary. She is excited for this Winter course with the DC program.

Emily Daly '19
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Jessica Davis '18

Jessica is a junior, Sociology major at W&M. Her passions include a cappella music, Spanish, and Harry Potter. In regards to community engagement, right now she is working with other students to bring awareness of human trafficking to campus. Her fifth grade teacher Mr. Matriccino and high school band director Mr. Thomas have inspired her to pursue education by showing her the incredible impact educators can have on their students’ lives.

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Jacques Deaver '17

Jacques is a Senior at W&M pursuing a major in Music with a concentration in Composition from Hamilton, VA. He makes electronic music and plans to become a freelance musician after graduation. He is an active member of Lafayette Kids, a volunteer group that tutors and mentors kids in low-income homes, and he is the Recruitment Chair for the Sigma Alpha Epsilon Fraternity. Tutoring has been a major part of his life, and he looks forward to learning more about education from the Urban Education seminar.

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Sarah DeVellis '19
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Torie Dunlap '20
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Malerie Gamblin '17

Malerie Gamblin, a senior here at the College, was born and raised in suburban Maryland.  

During her high school years, she volunteered over 1,000 community service hours.  Most of that time was spent working with or on behalf of children considered in-need or at-risk.  Malerie did this through three organizations she founded:  Music Counts and The E.S.T.E.A.M. Initiative (both of which worked directly with students) and the Student Alliance for Change (which was policy-focused).  

Malerie is currently a Psychology major, a Management & Organizational Leadership minor and is excited about pursuing a master's degree in Higher Education.  

While at William & Mary, her on-campus involvement has included W&M Pep Band, club volleyball,  membership in Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated, volunteering for the Office of Undergraduate Admission as a Home for the Holidays Program student recruiter, being a research assistant in the Department of Psychology's Social Cognition Lab, and sitting on the Lemon Project's Committee for Memorialization. 

Malerie is now very proud to have been selected as a W&M 2017 DC Winter Urban Education Scholar.  She is looking forward to learning more about policy and practices in America's urban schools and how these factors impact the chances of every child, without exception, getting the best education possible.

Scott Gemmel-Davis '17

Scott is a senior at the College of William & Mary studying International Relations and Business Marketing. He spent the past year living and working in Vietnam for Global Playground, a non-profit that promotes cross-cultural education around the world.  Scott now acts as Global Playground's W&M liaison.  Scott is also the Co-Founder and Director of Engagement for Greater City, a campus organization that seeks to build meaningful relationships between students and local individuals living through homelessness. He has studied abroad in both Spain and Southeast Asia, and enjoys playing guitar, basketball, and running in his free time.  

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Kayla Gibbs '20

I am a freshman at the College of William & Mary planning to major in either Neuroscience or Psychology. I’m currently a Wren and Sharpe scholar. I enjoy volunteering my time in the community to help those in need. For the past couple of summers, I volunteered at Sentara Obici Hospital in the Infusion Center, as well as, the Western Tidewater Free Clinic. Last year, I had the opportunity to intern an OB/GYN and job shadow an anesthesiologist. These experiences have allowed me insight in what the medical field is like. On campus, I work as a lab assistant for freshman phage lab. In my free time, I enjoy reading, writing, running, watching movies, and having fun. I’m excited to be a part of the Urban Education DC Winter Seminar so that I can further my knowledge and interests of disparities in education. 

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Xinyi (Thea) Gu '18

Thea is a transfer junior from China. With a pursuing major of English, she loves reading, writing, traveling, and has a deep concern for social justice. During the 2016 fall break, she took a service trip with Branch Out to Greensboro, NC and volunteered in The Center for New North Carolinians to help refugee children and adults learn English. In the case of refugee resettlement, education is the best and fastest way to help refugees integrate and live a normal life; likewise, in the broader social context, it is also the strongest factor affecting the development of social inequalities. With the premise of an equal access to education resources, social inequality can be eliminated most effectively, however, education inequality itself is a leading cause of this larger issue. As a future educator, she hopes to make a contribution to the reduction of this social ill, which is why she decides to pursue this very cause and joins the Urban Education seminar.  

Christina Hayden '18
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Abby Holcombe '17

Abby is a senior from Fredericksburg, Virginia (the last stop on the VRE!). She is pursuing a double major in Government and Environmental Science & Policy with the ultimate goal of working in the field of urban planning.  She is interested in the intersections of social and environmental justice issues and hopes to find sustainable solutions for our rapidly urbanizing world. An active member of W&M’s service fraternity and Student Environmental Action Coalition, Abby has passionately served the Williamsburg community, and is excited to bring that passion to Washington, D.C.

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Alex Maneval '19

Alex Maneval is a sophomore at William & Mary and is pursuing a Applied Mathematics degree with the intent to apply to the School of Education. When he isn’t studying, he is often seen working at the Campus Post Office, and is a member of Skiffy as well as on the Vestry of Canterbury Campus Ministries. Off campus, he is active in the Boy Scouts of America and the Order of the Arrow. After college, he hopes to teach math in a fun and engaging manner in order to in a way that sparks interest in the field. He is extremely excited for the opportunities this program provides, and is looking forward to an amazing experience in D.C.

Ebony Martin '17

My name is Ebony Martin and I am a junior at the College of William & Mary pursuing a major in Africana Studies and a minor in Gender, Sexuality,and Women's Studies. I am from Martinsville, Virginia and I attendedMagna Vista High School. On campus I am a Span Mentor, Social EventsCoordinator for the SPAN program, William & Mary Conference Servicesemployee, and Baskin Robbins employee. My favorite things to do while inschool are late night IHOP runs and lunch at Plaza Azteca with my friends.On campus I enjoy hanging out in the Center for Student Diversity andcoffee dates in Swemaromas. I really want to bring emphasis to kids likemyself who I feel were not properly prepared for college because of racismenacted by the educational system via the teachers and the administrativesystem. I do not agree with widely trending theories of lack of blackmotivation or apathy towards black futures. The African Americancommunity values education and has all the tools to be properly groomedfor a successful future just as much as any other ethnicity. We as a peoplehave to stop looking at educational issues as an achievement gap and startlooking at the investment gap of the people that are put in place to teachour community. The same sweat and effort should go into every childregardless of color or cultural background. The question is: Are we beingpicky enough about who we rely on to carry the brand "instructor"? Aftercollege, I hope to pursue a career in teaching or child advocacy law.

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Hannah Mawyer '17

Hannah is a senior, biology major at William & Mary. She is actively involved with the Office of Community Engagement, Canterbury: Episcopal Campus Ministry, and sWiM Club. After undergrad, she plans to enroll at the SOE for the fifth year Master's of Teaching program and teach high school biology. She loves birds, turtles, camping, and all things yellow. 

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Deirdre McDonough '17
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Juliana Morrison '17

Juliana is a Senior majoring in History who has just begun the process of gaining a Masters in Secondary Education at William & Mary’s School of Education. She is a member of Vox and Kappa Delta, as well as the service fraternity Alpha Phi Omega where her service centers around educational achievement in local middle schools. Her service-based research as a Sharpe Scholar her freshman year has evolved over the years into a strong academic interest in educational equality and opportunity. She is greatly looking forward to gaining new insight into the world of education through her participation in this seminar this Winter.

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Emma Munis '18

Emma Munis is a junior at the College, majoring in English. She is passionate about education in underserved communities and literacy in the United States. She has interned at the U.S. Department of Education in 2014, learning about many issues of education in the different states. Emma is on the leadership team of the on campus organization, Merrimac Mentors, a group that works with the youth at a local juvenile detention center. She is passionate about juvenile justice and the ways in which education of students is impacted by their incarceration and the opportunities they miss in an alternate school setting. Emma hopes to attend the William & Mary School of Education for Secondary English Education, with the goal of teaching in a juvenile detention facility. 

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Luc Ngyuen '18

Luc Nguyen is a junior at William & Mary from Annandale, VA. He is working towards a major in English and a minor in psychology, with plans to enter William & Mary's 5-year MaEd program in Secondary English Education. After teaching, Luc intends to transition to school counseling or school administration. On campus, Luc works as a consultant at the Writing Resources Center and as an assistant preschool teacher at Williamsburg Campus Child Care. He is also a site trainer and tutor for College Partnership for Kids, a tutoring and mentoring organization that works with children throughout the Williamsburg area.

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Sarah Scott '19

I am a sophomore at the College of William & Mary intending to major in Public Policy and minor in Organizational Management and Leadership. On campus, I am involved in the Catholic Campus Ministry, and Students for Stop Hunger Now. I am passionate about education, and believe that the flaws the system is challenged with can be fixed. Education plays a critical role in all people's lives and the system must be made more effective. I hope to learn about current education policies utilized by our schools, and discover ways to implement positive change. I am especially interested in helping the experience of children that come from disadvantaged backgrounds. I am thrilled to have this opportunity to learn about urban education in the heart of our nation's capital. 

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Andrew Stephenson '17

Andrew is a senior at the College pursuing a major in anthropology and a minor in Japanese Studies.  He is from Wrightsville Beach, North Carolina.  On campus, Andrew serves as the president of the club tennis team and is the chair of the AMP Contemporary & Cultural Issues committee.  Last semester, Andrew studied abroad in Tokyo, Japan, where he studied Japanese culture and language.  He is passionate about traveling, learning new languages and cultures, and watching movies.  Andrew is excited about learning more about urban public education, as he is interested in teaching abroad when he graduates.

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Sumaia Tabassum '18

Sumaia Tabassum is currently a junior at W&M. She loves organic chemistry and hopes to be a high school chemistry teacher.  Sumaia is currently involved in physical organic chemistry research, and she also works as a resident assistant for freshmen students. During her K-12 education Sumaia attended thirteen different schools, broadening her understanding of disparities in education across schools, counties, states, and countries. Sumaia is committed to minimizing the achievement gap and serving underrepresented minorities in higher education. In the summer of 2016, Sumaia will be a Summer Teaching Fellow at Uncommon Schools.