NAFSA's Diversity Impact Program supports institutions serving underrepresented populations by helping them expand capacity, grow study abroad, and increase student global competencies. The goal is to help build diversity within international education, both in the development of professionals and by assisting these institutions in their efforts promoting internationalization on their campuses.
In its sixth year, the program has grown to provide international education professionals from tribal colleges and universities; historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs); Hispanic-serving institutions (HSIs); and community colleges and associates colleges, with complimentary NAFSA membership, registration to the NAFSA Annual Conference & Expo, and yearlong mentoring and professional development opportunities.
Community and Associate Colleges
Kate Burkett is a program coordinator for the Community College Initiative Program at Northern Virginia Community College, Alexandria Campus. Burkett completed her BA in Spanish the University of North Carolina Asheville. Before entering the field of International Education, Burkett taught Spanish as a Teach for America Corps member. Her time in the classroom inspired her to earn an MEd in International Education Policy and Management at Vanderbilt University, and continue to advocate for increased opportunities for global interactions among underserved and underrepresented communities.
Dessa Crum is a designated school official (DSO) and coordinator in International and Immigrant Student Services at Johnson County Community College in Overland Park, MO. She has a BA in international studies and a MA in TESL from the University of Central Missouri. Dessa studied abroad in Germany and Japan during high school and in Hungary during college. After completing her studies from the University of Central Missouri she taught ESL in Turkey for 3 years.
Jaya Daniel is working as a coordinator/designated school official (DSO) for two years at Johnson County Community College. Jaya is responsible for serving as the visa student advisor within the International and Immigrant Student Services office; maintaining regulatory expertise for all visa types and assisting in coordination of all international and immigrant student support and service. This includes mandatory SEVIS reporting, regulatory compliance, insurance enrollment, language and cultural adjustment and orientation. Jaya has been a faculty and worked in student services more than 15 years in different countries.
Kelsey Davison works in student support services at Lansing Community College (LCC) in Michigan. Upon completion of her bachelor’s in Spanish from Central Michigan University, she moved to Madrid, Spain and taught English to primary school students. Davison looks forward to pursuing her master's degree of higher education administration in the near future. She hopes to focus her studies on internationalization and language immersion programs, and she is interested in increasing global engagement at Lansing Community College. New to international education, Davison embraces every opportunity to learn more about the field, and she looks forward to gaining further professional development on DIP.
Martin Rosales is an admissions coordinator and designated school official at City College of San Francisco (CCSF). After returning from teaching in Japan for three years, Martin earned his master’s in education with a focus on higher education administration from Auburn University. In his current position at CCSF, he assists in processing international student applications and advises international students on immigration, transfer, and work authorization processes. His current projects include creating and managing the online international student orientation, online international application, and paperless processes. One of his goals is to bring equity to student services for all international students.
Hispanic Serving Institutions
Melinda Zepeda is a professor of English at Northwest Vista College, one of the Alamo Colleges in San Antonio, Texas. Her career as a university and college educator has spanned over 20 years, largely focusing on curriculum related to critical race theory, Chicano/a studies, and gender studies. Most recently, her curriculum development has included global literacy for her students. In summer 2017, she led a study abroad writing course to New Zealand, a course scheduled again for summer 2018. Apart from creating innovative curriculum, she is involved with initiatives that advocate raising awareness for those in marginalized communities.
Alejandra Prieto-Mendoza is the coordinator of international partnerships at Northeastern Illinois University. Born in Colombia, she holds a masters in linguistics and ESL, and is a PhD candidate in Hispanic linguistics at the University of Illinois at Chicago. At Northeastern, Alejandra is the Responsible Officer for the J-1 program, assists with the recruitment of F-1 students, and coordinates onsite events for International Programs. She is in charge of maintaining communication with their International Partner Universities and coordinates incoming and outgoing students’ exchange. Alejandra oversees the students’ entire abroad experience (incoming and outgoing) making sure of their well-being while on their international academic life.
Historically Black Colleges and Universities
Samson Chama, PhD is an associate professor in the Department of Social Work at Alabama A&M University. He received his master of social work (MSW) degree from The University of Georgia (UGA) and his PhD in social work from Virginia Commonwealth University. Samson is a researcher and his areas of interest include international social work and global development, human rights, and HIV and AIDS. He has worked with several international organizations including the United Nations Children Fund (UNICEF), International Labor Organization, World Bank, and the United States Agency for International Development (USAID). Currently, he is working with students to spearhead a United Nations Project for racially diverse students.
Mashairi Halifu is an international student advisor II/designated school official (DSO) at Prairie View A&M University. She graduated with her bachelor's degree in public relations from Texas Tech University and is currently pursuing a master's degree from Prairie View A&M University. She has been in the field of international student services since November 2016.
Lombuso S. Khoza, PhD is interim director, Center for International Education at the University of Maryland Eastern Shore, and associate professor in the Department of Human Ecology at UMES. Her responsibilities at the Center are to enhance the seamless experience of international students academically and socially on the Eastern Shore and region. The Center also serves as a resource for students’ study abroad and faculty international education needs. Dr. Khoza teaches fashion merchandising courses, and is liaison for the Fashion Institute Technology program in New York City. Dr. Khoza is an international alumna originally from the beautiful Kingdom of Swaziland.
Loretta Mask Campbell serves as the assistant director of the Richard A. Henson Honors Program at the University of Maryland Eastern Shore. She completed her undergraduate degree from Saint Augustine’s College and earned a Masters’ of Liberal Studies with a Higher Education and Counseling concentration from North Carolina State University. Loretta collaborates on campus with the Center of International Education and Office of University Engagement and Lifelong Learning to develop international service learning and study abroad opportunities for honors and non-honors students. Loretta believes that the world is a classroom and strives to enhance students’ global and cultural awareness.
Javonni McGlaurin is the program assistant in the Office of International Programs and Designated School Official (DSO) at Saint Augustine’s University. Javonni was the first to receive a BA in international studies from Hampton University and will complete her master’s in international education from SIT Graduate Institute in 2018. Javonni served with the U.S. Peace Corps as a youth development volunteer in the Philippines. While on her 27-month assignment, Javonni launched HBCUs Abroad working to expand the network of global citizens at historically black colleges and universities. Javonni is a passionate leader dedicated to making a difference towards mutual understanding and peace.
Michelle Morris is an international educator and self-proclaimed global citizen with a passion for making global engagement equally accessible for everyone. Michelle graduated from Gallaudet University with a BA in international studies and government. Prior to joining the Bunche Center she has studied, worked and volunteered in over 10 different countries through both academic and nonprofit institutions dedicated to increasing opportunities for underserved populations via international programming, scholarships, second language acquisition training and youth development planning. She is excited to join the 2018 DIP cohort and make her mark on the continued internationalization of Howard University.
Letoyia Starr is the SEVIS and international student services manager in the Office International Programs at Clark Atlanta University. A native Georgian, she is a graduate of Clark Atlanta University, earning an undergraduate degree in criminal justice and a graduate degree in social work. Letoyia serves as one of the designated school officials (DSOs) for the University and assists in coordinating the orientation programs for international students. In addition to the recruitment, admissions and orientation responsibilities, she coordinates the strategic communications for all sponsored international student programs to ensure the onboarding and retention of sponsored international students.
Sharmila Udyavar serves as a liaison to provost for international education programming at Fayetteville State University. In this role, she works on various aspects of campus internationalization. Her areas of interest are globalization of the curriculum and co-curricular programming designed to enhance global learning. She is interested in international education leadership and plans on designing a vision of comprehensive internationalization for the institution. Sharmila also serves as lecturer in sociology and enjoys teaching students about the symbiotic nature of society and human beings. She is currently completing her doctoral journey and is excited about graduating this spring.