Please Note: Presenters are listed in alphabetical order by last name.
My name is Forster Agbobadah, a CCI participant from Ghana 2010-2011 academic year. I studied automotive system technology at Davidson County Community College at Lexington, North Carolina. After returning to Ghana from the CCI program, I went back to college and completed my third year program in automotive engineering which I started before embarking on the CCI program which I graduated last year, 2012. Since then I worked at my college as a teaching assistants in the School of Engineering, Koforidua Polytechnic till 31st July, 2013. This gave me opportunity to share my experience with colleagues and teachers, and I also volunteered my time tutoring students who needed help and acted as a co-project/thesis supervisor to most final year students in the automotive engineering department of Koforidua Polytechnic.
Since returning home as a CCI alumnus, I have participated in all alumni activities organized by the Ghana US – Department of States Alumni Association of Ghana with support from the Embassy of the United States, Accra-Ghana including two successive annual CCI/YES collaborated alumni conferences and the third one coming up in September this year.
Last year, I worked with the YES alumni Ghana to planned and executed the Alumni Engagement Innovation Fund sponsored project dubbed “YES 4 PEACE” to campaign for peaceful elections across some selected flash zones in the country before, during and after Ghana’s general elections, 2012 which yielded a great result. This year the CCI alumni are working on a maiden project dubbed “CCI Mobile Peer Mentoring Project” which supports senior high school students in discovering their academic, social, and personal strengths upon which they can build a future.
I am currently at home working on opportunities to return to the states to pursue higher in Mechanical/ Automotive Technology education, then return to Ghana to teach and working towards establishing my dream State of the Art Automotive Service Center to offer world class repair/maintenance/service/ to prospective customers.
My name is Shahid Ahmed from Pakistan. I was born and raised in Karachi, Pakistan. I am a Retail Business Industry Professional with a Bachelor of Commerce Degree (Associate Degree in Commerce). I have worked with famous national and international retail store brands in the city. I have trained many employees who are now successful supervisors and managers. I always believed in gaining and passing the knowledge, skills and expertise.
In the year 2010, I had a great opportunity of my lifetime to visit the USA in the CCID program by winning a Scholarship. In this program I gained a Business Administration Diploma. I studied Marketing, Selling, Project Management, Business Management, Entrepreneurship and Public Speaking with other subjects. This program enhanced my professional skills and gave the vision to do something for the betterment of the people in my community.
I returned from USA to my home country in July 2011, after completing CCI program with a great GPA and an extra ordinary achievement award. I was fully motivated and passionate to initiate some projects for the development of my community. Therefore, I firstly successfully lead and completed a community welfare organization project for the development of women and young boys and girls in the community. Secondly I have lead and successfully completed a small retail business project by establishing a registered firm and a trade mark in the city with the help of an investor (project partner).
I am currently working as the General Manager with newly launched retail business firm (with my project partner) training and developing a business team which could successfully expand our business. I am also serving as the General Secretary in my community welfare organization. I have many plans for doing small projects for the development of women, young boys and girls in my community through my community welfare organization platform in the near future.
Ebony Bovell graduated in 2007 with a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration with an emphasis in Tourism from the University of Panama. In 2009, she was selected as one of the two Panamanian students that participated for the first time in the CCI program. As a CCI student, Ebony had the opportunity to be part of the Global Leadership Academy at the Lone Star College, Cyfair campus; acquiring with this experience a better understanding and appreciation of the American culture, leadership and career development. In 2010 after completing the program she received a Certificate in General Business.
As CCI Alumni she has participated in several activities promoted by the US Embassy in Panama, where she had the opportunity to talk about her experience in this remarkable program. These activities include an interview at a national radio show and other events.
At the moment, Ebony works as an HR Senior Assistant for Trump Ocean Club International Hotel & Tower Panama; furthermore, she is on the brink of obtaining an MBA in Human Resources Management & Administration.
Erick has over two years of professional experience in the nonprofit sector. In 2010, he was one of the students selected to represent Kenya for the first time in the CCI program. As a CCI student, Erick had opportunity to volunteer with the United Nations Association of the National Capital Area (UNA-NCA) as policy advisor on HIV/AIDS and Youth Affairs. He also participated on World Youth Conference at the World Bank in Washington DC. Erick also got an opportunity to participate in a number of student’s organizations such as Africa-Caribbean Association of NOVA where he spearheaded its registration.
He completed the program in 2011. As CCI Alumni, he has participated in a number of programs organized by the U.S. Embassy in Kenya, where he had the opportunity to share his experience in this extraordinary program and talk about the welfare of youths in Kenya. These activities include a roundtable discussion on youth participation in Kenyan politics at Intercontinental Hotel, a discussion on the culture-shock at the Embassy and discussion on Kenya’s election 2013 at Norfolk Hotel in Nairobi. Erick is a founder member and program coordinator of Action for Development Kenya.
Currently, Erick Dwele works for Technology Partners as consultant on entrepreneurship and HIV/AIDs. He’s also working with a group of youth to launch a network of young people for socio-economic and political benefit.
Marilee is currently a Professor/Coordinator in the Business and Information Technology Department at Kirkwood Community College, Cedar Rapids, Iowa, USA. She gained her master’s degree in Education and Leadership at Iowa State University and her bachelor’s degree in Business Education from the University of Northern Iowa, USA. For over two decades, Marilee has created, developed, and taught courses in human resources, business communications, and human relations for both the credit and business training branches of the college. Marilee’s human resources training include behavior-based job interview techniques as well as the design and construction of evaluation instruments that meet US legal hiring criteria. Marilee is a member of the Board of Advisors of Executivewalk.com, an online international job placement website founded by Ahmad Iqbal, 2007-2009 Fulbright Grantee from Indonesia who studied in the United States under Community Colleges for International Development (CCID) Program.
Paula María Jacobo Mollinedo works in the Guatemala Tourist Commission as a developer of a Quality Certification for Hotels, Tour Operators and Restaurants. This certification process is a new initiative of the Guatemalan government and Paula has been involved in developing the certification process from its beginning. She is currently studying for her Bachelor Degree in Hotels, Tourism and Culinary Art, in one of the highest universities in Guatemala. In 2011 she worked in the hotel Madinat Jumeirah in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. In 2010, she received a Certification in Hotels Operation and another one in Travel and Tourism in Kapiolani Community College as part of the CCI Program. The same year she got a Presidential Award for community service.
Her country has always been very important to her, which is why she always has been conscious about the importance of contributing to its success and progress with her hard work and dedication. In Guatemala, the Ministry of Education requires that all senior students work in groups of 10 and develop a seminary of how to help one specific community. In this seminary you have to work all the year in this, first is a thesis, then the Ministry of Education approves your thesis and you get permission to work with the community that you choose. She was the coordinator of her group and they choose to work with nursemaids of an orphanage, at the end she received the award to be one of the best 10 groups in all Guatemala – one of the best 10 projects from over 12,000 that the Ministry received that year.
Now she is continuing to reach new goals and to never stop dreaming about a better future, because remember: You can go as far as your eyes can see if you have the determination of work hard and believe in yourself!
I am a South African born leader, visionary, strategist, community patriot, entrepreneur and an enthusiast of languages. I am the president & co-founder of New Dawn Foundation, co-founder & joint CEO of Y-Knot holdings (Pty) Ltd and a computer forensics consultant at Price Waterhouse Coopers (Pretoria, South Africa). I am a qualified & certified computer forensics examiner. I have worked in two provinces; 6 primary schools upon my return from the US on a quest to better the English language proficiency of learners in Grades 3-6 through our cornerstone project named Spelling Spark and have made a huge success of the project together with my colleagues. I give talks to high school students residing in rural areas to empower them, flood them with relevant knowledge about life after high school and steering their attention towards initiatives which could help them ameliorate their lives. I demonstrate through my life the need for volunteerism and community patriotism to other and encourage them through my talks to do the same. I am currently working through my organization towards establishing and building youth enabling spaces in rural areas. Looking into the future I want to establish and build language centers throughout Africa to improve language utilization and comprehension. My immortal dream is to make Africa and the world a better place for all.
Muthoni Muriu has twenty years of experience in international development work and a passion for social justice issues. As Senior Director of Regional Programs for Oxfam America, she provides strategic leadership and management oversight for their international programs. In addition to steering policy and systems integration, she is responsible for ensuring that Oxfam’s regionally based programs are well resourced and maintain the integrity of their impact objectives. She has worked within the Oxfam International confederation for over twelve years. Prior to joining Oxfam in 2000, she worked with various regional organizations in Africa, focusing on international policy and development issues. She is fluent in English, French, Kiswahili, and Kikuyu and holds a BSc in Politics and International Relations from the London School of Political Science and Economics and an MSc in Public Policy and Management from the School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London.
Peter is a graduate with BSc. Mechanical Engineering and MSc. Entrepreneurship from the Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology. He has attained the Toastmasters International Advanced Communicator Bronze (ACB) and Advanced Leader Bronze (ALB). Peter recently qualified as a trainer for the Female Future Program Rhetoric Module and is a member of the Kenya Institute of Management.
Before selection as a Hubert Humphrey Fellow in 2009, Peter was a business development consultant in Kenya after which he returned to focus on family business leadership and management communication.
Peter is the lead consultant at Sasolve Consulting which provides leadership development, corporate communication and business strategy advisory services to locally owned businesses. His primary focus is growth oriented businesses in transition; particularly those which wish to re-structure their businesses to allow involvement of people from diverse backgrounds who would not otherwise be considered for leadership.
As a Humphrey Fellow Peter explored the critical role of leadership development as a strategy for the transformation of businesses and, by extension, society in Kenya. Peter returned to Kenya in September 2010 and began leadership development programs starting with members of his own extended family, local elementary schools and universities. He plans to establish a leadership development institute in Kenya to train a new generation of family business leaders in practical leadership, effective communication and public speaking.
Peter used writing skills acquired / practiced before and during the Humphrey Program to contribute articles on family business in the Business Daily, Kenya’s only national business newspaper for which he is now a columnist. He has also been a member of the Nairobi Toastmasters Club, serving as the Vice President (Education) in 2012, President in 2013 and as the current Immediate Past President.
Peter is married to his lovely wife Mwende with whom they have a son and an adopted daughter.
Kim Marie Natoli is currently the Deputy Director in the Office of Global Youth Issues (GYI) at the Department of State. She is a career diplomat specializing in Public Diplomacy, who has served in six overseas missions and two domestic tours. She did consular tours in China and Russia; served as a Political Advisor to the High Representative in Sarajevo; she served as Assistant Cultural Affairs Officer in Berlin, Public Affairs Officer (PAO) for 2 years for 5 co-located Provincial Reconstruction Teams (PRTs) in Al-Hillah, Iraq and as the Senior U.S. Representative in Uruzgan, Afghanistan. Prior to her current position, Kim served as the Senior PAO in the Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons where she worked on reducing the government’s slavery footprint and corporate social responsibility issues.
Kim is a native New Yorker and has a BA from UC Berkeley in Legal Studies and International Relations and a Master’s Degree from Georgetown University in European Affairs.
Brian A. OliverSmith, CEO & Co-Founder of Urban Planet Mobile, is one of the pioneers in mobile education and education technology innovation. His company began building Urban English, the first English language learning program for mobile delivery in 2008. Urban English delivers sms text with English audio lessons in 19 languages. Urban English and Urban Planet won the first GSMA Best Innovation in Mobile Learning Award, a Frost and Sullivan Best App in Asia Award, and Gartner Cool Vendor in Education Technology Award. Urban English is currently distributed in 15 countries and delivers over 3,000,000 lessons per month with the cooperation of local mobile carriers such as Telkomsel, Tigo, NTT, and IndoSat.
With the upcoming launch of Urban English Express – the world’s first blended English learning program developed entirely for cross-platform use, the company’s innovative mobile learning products can be accessed on a variety of mobile devices, from computers and tablets to smartphones and basic mobile handsets. Additionally, Urban Planet has developed the first web-based program utilizing online tutorials and automated essay scoring to help students improve their English writing skills.
Prior to Urban Planet, Brian built an audio publishing company, which was the first company to deliver spoken word content on iTunes. Brian is a recognized expert in mobile education, new education technologies, and social entrepreneurism, having presented around the world from the GSMA Mobile World Congress to the US State Department’s Tech Forum on Education to the Duke University Social Enterprise Symposium. In 2012, he was selected a Top Entrepreneur by Southern Business Leader Association, and in 2013, he was a featured speaker at the TedxDuke Conference: A Shrinking World in April and at the Virtual Educa Conference in Medellin, Colombia in June. Brian has a varied background from Serial Entrepreneur to technology innovator to executive coach and professional operatic tenor.
President Barack Obama appointed Mr. Clay Pell to serve as Deputy Assistant Secretary for International and Foreign Language Education in April 2013. Mr. Pell’s overall focus is to advance President Obama and Secretary Duncan’s vision for global competitiveness through education for the 21st Century.
Prior to joining the Department of Education, Mr. Pell served as Director for Strategic Planning on the National Security Staff at the White House, where he helped develop and advance a number of the President’s key national security priorities.
As Deputy Assistant Secretary, Mr. Pell oversees policy and programmatic efforts to encourage and promote the study of foreign languages and cultures of other countries at the elementary, secondary, and postsecondary levels in the United States. Mr. Pell also oversees the administration of the Department of Education’s Title VI and Fulbright-Hays domestic and overseas grant programs.
Having studied Chinese, Spanish, and Arabic, Clay brings a personal understanding to the development of foreign language programs and the role critical foreign languages play in America’s economic and national security.
Prior to joining the President’s National Security Staff, Mr. Pell served in a variety of roles with the U.S. Coast Guard, State Department, Central Intelligence Agency, and several international law firms.
Mr. Pell earned his J.D. from Georgetown University, and graduated from Harvard University with high honors in Social Studies and a Citation in Modern Standard Arabic. He is a Term Member of the Council of Foreign Relations; a member of the Bars of Rhode Island, Massachusetts, and the United States Supreme Court.
Dr. Mary E. Rittling was appointed as the third president of Davidson County Community College, Lexington, NC, in August 2003, where she leads a full-time faculty and staff of 300, and approximately 400 adjunct instructors and part-time staff members. DCCC offers campuses in Davidson and Davie counties as well as three satellite centers. Over 17,000 students enroll each year, with over 4,000 pursuing one of over 50 curriculum programs.
Prior to her DCCC presidency, Rittling served four years as Regional Vice President of West Virginia University where she also was President of Potomac State College of West Virginia University. Potomac State is a residential, two-year college while West Virginia University is a doctoral and research university.
Rittling, originally from Buffalo, New York, spent seven years as a senior administrator at the State University of New York at Delhi where she served as Interim President of the College of Technology, Vice President for Academic Programs and Services, Director for Business, Industry and Lifelong Learning, Director of the Academic Success Center and Nursing Director for the Student Health Center.
Her teaching experience includes eight years as a Professor and Associate Professor of Nursing at the State University of New York College of Technology at Delhi, where she was a tenured faculty member in the Associate Degree Nursing Program.
Rittling completed the Harvard University Institute for New Presidents, earned a Doctor of Education degree in Higher and Adult Education from Columbia University in New York City where she also completed a Master of Arts degree. She earned a Master of Science degree in Nursing from Binghamton University in Binghamton, New York and a Bachelor of Science degree in Nursing from D’Youville College in Buffalo, New York.
Dr. Rittling and her husband Jim have 3 children, 4 grandchildren.
Seven Robbins is Director, Research Innovation in the Center for Academic and Workforce Readiness and Success within the Research and Development division at Educational Testing Service in Princeton, NJ. He received his Ph.D. degree (Honors: Graduate Research Fellow) in counseling psychology (APA Approved) in 1983 and his M.S. degree in rehabilitation counseling (Honors: Research Fellow) in 1980—both from the University of Utah. He received his B.A. degree (Honors: Deans List) in psychology in 1975 from the University of Illinois.
Robbins, who has recently been Vice President for Research at ACT, joined R&D as a Principal Scientist in the Center for Academic and Workforce Readiness and Success, led by Pat Kyllonen. In addition to his leadership experience at ACT, he has worked as a lead developer on multiple personality and career assessments, including the Career Factors Inventory and the Personal Skills Assessment suite of products as part of ACT’s WorkKeys. He also led the development of ACT’s Engage Student and Teacher Editions that measure academic behavior readiness for college, high school, and middle school students. He has designed and built career and psychosocial curriculum tied to assessment solutions to promote education and workplace success. He is a former professor and chair of the Psychology Department at Virginia Commonwealth University.
Steve participates and plays a leading role in both of the Center’s initiatives–the Next Generation Higher Education Assessment Initiative and the Workforce Readiness Initiative. He provides intellectual leadership and mentoring to a team of scientists conducting research to address how better assessment might contribute to improving higher education retention and student learning outcomes, and his expertise in workforce assessment accelerates our research activity in the workforce readiness realm.
Mohamed Samy is currently teaching part- time at the American University in Cairo, Business Studies Davison He is also leading the Learning & Development function at one of the top 10 Pharmaceutical Companies in the world, Eli Lilly & Company.
Prior to this Samy studied, and worked in the United States. Samy served as an active member in HR Houston University Liaison Committee that helps university students and alumni to navigate business life, by providing coaching and real life experience that increases their employability skills.
Samy originally has a Bachelor of Science from the oldest university in the world “Al Azhar University.”
Samy has been a featured speaker in the following conferences & events:
- The U.S Embassy in Cairo – State Alumni Career Event – Cairo, Egypt 2013
- The German University Cairo – Career Weekend Event – Cairo, Egypt 2012
- CCI Alumni- Career Development Seminar – Cairo, Egypt 2012
- The International Education Conference – Lone Star College – Texas, USA 2011
- University of Houston HR University Liaison Committee Leaders Event – Texas, USA 2011
Heidi Silver-Pacuilla is a team leader in the U. S. Department of Education, Office of Vocational and Adult Education (OVAE). Her expertise is in adult literacy, educational technology, implementation, and professional development. She oversees professional development and technical assistance projects to improve instruction in adult education programs across the country. She has published widely in the area of adult education and technology, most recently editing a special issue on developmental education in the journal, Community College Review.
Kitty Sitompul attained her degree in Television Broadcasting in 2006 from the University of Indonesia. In 2009, she received her CCI scholarship that brought her to first study at Parkland College, Champaign, Illinois for her English as a Second Language certification program then continued her academic life at Madison College, Madison, Wisconsin. In April 2010, the college granted her with the Above and Beyond Award, a student involvement award for her exemplary involvement and service to the campus and community. She graduated with honors and received a certificate in Journalism, July 2010.
Starting to teach English at the age of 18 at a local orphanage, Kitty began her own English Club for adults called Madison English Club two years after she returned to her homeland, Indonesia. The English Club won the first runner up at the Entrepreneurship competition by the US Embassy Jakarta in collaboration with Trisakti University. She has also been one of the youngest lecturers at Pakuan University, a local university at her hometown, Bogor. Public Speaking and Interpreting were among the subjects she taught at the English Literature Faculty.
One year and seven months after it began, she decided to close her English Club to pursue an international career. Currently Kitty works as a presenter and moderator at local events such as book launches and company gatherings, as well as being an interpreter for both local and international settings while trying to save up some money for her goals. Kitty Sitompul is an optimist: someone who figures that taking a step backward after taking a step forward is not a disaster. It’s more like a cha-cha.