Vanessa Faloye | Chief Trainer
Vanessa is a trainer-facilitator, curriculum developer, and project coordinator in social impact education. She works with AMP in designing and delivering the AMP Action Lab, Global Scholar, and AMPlifier virtual trainings for global youth. Her curricula span anti-oppression; systems thinking; and social action as ways to educate and inspire systems-level social change. In her non-existent spare time, she also does motivational speaking and blogging on social innovation. Vanessa has a double honors bachelors degree in International Relations and Spanish and a post-graduate certificate in Social Enterprise and Innovation. She is really passionate about traveling, reading, and speaking Spanish.
Karen Showalter | Chief Maker
Karen has led the Global Scholar program for the past 7 years, and has developed and delivered programming around social change, advocacy, strategic communications, and movement building for over 15 years. Karen was previously the Executive Director of AMP Global Youth, and is current Co-Chair of the Board of Directors. When not coaching AMP leaders, she’s a Senior Campaign Director for a national women’s organization. She has worked for Oxfam International, MomsRising, Netcentric Campaigns, and the Bank Information Center, and has worked in Mali, Niger, Nepal and the United States. Karen got her start as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Niger, West Africa. She has a Masters Degree in Public Affairs from the Woodrow Wilson School of Princeton University and a Bachelors Degree from the University of Michigan. Karen is also a Penn State Master Gardener, avid skier and aspiring fiber artist.
Michał Matejczuk | Global Scholar Coordinator
Michał is a real world renaissance man on a never-ending mission to combat global food insecurity and child malnutrition throughout Sub-Saharan Africa. Using his culinary prowess as a catalyst and inspiration for behavior change, he aspires to create better sustainable business models across Africa’s powerful agricultural industry. With recently becoming a Returned Peace Corps Volunteer and serving in Uganda, Michał had the privilege of working across various sectors such as agribusiness, health, and education during his two years of service. In addition to working for Olam International, he was the National Director for the national initiative called “StartUp Uganda” that worked to promote entrepreneurship and youth empowerment throughout rural communities. Michał also managed various projects dealing in food security, environmental conservation and HIV/AIDS prevention. Graduating from the Culinary Institute of America with a Bachelor’s in Business Administration, Michał will be pursuing graduate work at Cornell University this upcoming fall with a concentration in international agriculture and rural development. Michał is excited to work and share his international experiences with this year’s students at AMP Global Youth, and working with them to become better global advocates and future leaders of their industry.
Kimberly Aagaard | Global Scholar Coordinator
Kimberly is a foreign policy researcher recently returned from Paris, where she completed a master’s degree in International Security at Sciences Po. In conjunction with her master’s program, she interned last year with the U.S. Consulate General Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, and with the Institute for Integrated Transitions, an NGO in Barcelona, Spain. Prior to that, Kimberly worked in Washington, DC, for four years in both the private sector and the think tank world. She graduated from Santa Clara University with a bachelor’s degree in Political Science and a second major in Spanish. Originally from Northern California, Kimberly enjoys music, hiking, and reading in her spare time. She is looking forward to joining the Global Scholar Program for an amazing summer!
Jade Richards | Global Scholar Fellow
Richards is a senior at American University studying Psychology and Education Policy. In his time in college, he interned for organizations such as the Aspen Institute, the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation, and the New York City Council. On his campus, Richards served as American University’s NAACP Education Committee Director, during which time he worked with DCPS and local nonprofits to further efforts to improve post-secondary education access and success. In addition to this, Richards launched a campus organization to address institutional transparency and administrative use of student data. Richards plans to work on education policy following his graduation.
Yara Hussein | Global Scholar Intern
Yara is currently a rising senior at Oakton High School in Vienna, Virginia and has an avid interest in international affairs, diplomacy, and being a global and ethical citizen. She believes that meeting new people and actively seeking out new knowledge is the most rewarding opportunity in life, and hopes to be a friend and helping hand to all participants this year.
Aditi Narayanan | Intern
Aditi is a rising high school junior who loves politics and getting involved in her community. After working a few local Arizona campaigns and voter registration drives, she decided to join AMP Global Youth because of, well, their global influence. She’s super excited to be on the team and to reach teens that want to help their community!
Kyle Niekrasz | Intern
Kyle is a rising senior at Syracuse University studying political science and history. While in college, he has interned for Congressman Frank Pallone Jr. and Senator Cory Booker. Through his education and internships, Kyle has found a passion for criminal justice reform, environmental policy, and international trade. Kyle believes that some of the most effective methods of diplomacy and policy are clear communication, understanding, and love. After graduation, he plans to stay in Washington DC to help put forward a progressive agenda for future leaders.
Diana Bender-Bier | Intern
Diana is a recent graduate of Emory University with degrees in Biology and Comparative Literature. She grew up in Rockville, MD and began her advocacy work in her middle school years lobbying for safe international road travel (ASIRT), continued in high school as she served as one of the three Maryland delegates at the Washington Youth Summit on the Environment, and in college she served as a philanthropy chair and legislator in her student government. After her first year of college, Diana interned for So What Else?, a nonprofit dedicated to keeping children from inner city D.C. healthy, happy, and safe. After that, she was inspired to work with Atlanta’s homeless population through sandwich drives with Atlanta Community Food Bank, discussions with Gateway Center residents and volunteers, trips with nonprofits that grew produce for homeless shelters in Atlanta and that provided outdoor activities for children in inner city Atlanta. She also has a passion for teaching, and has taught children ages 2 to 12. She is interested in international development, poverty (access to water, food, and shelter), nutrition, and youth education. She also has an interest in cancer biology research and treatment accessibility. She values inclusivity and accessibility!
Sarah Becker | Intern
Sarah is a rising Junior studying Spanish and English at Messiah College. She has a deep interest in international affairs, and will spend her next semester abroad in Spain at the University of Granada. After a semester volunteering with Catholic Charities by teaching ESL to non-native speakers, Sarah intends to work with and for immigrant populations after college. She also firmly believes that youth have a unique ability to make the world we share a better place and is excited to work with the AMP team and participants. In her free time Sarah enjoys having long conversations, watching anime, and trail running in the Appalachian mountains.