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Destination Workshops

How are global goals taught and achieved around the world?  What skills and knowledge do we need to make a difference?  Where in the world is the best fit for us as an individual?  We invite representatives of educational institutions to share their experiences and give our students their best advice.

Through these destination workshops, students learn how to continue developing their passion as they chart their way into higher education and the professional world.


These Destination Workshops are offered in conjunction with Buddies Without Borders Online Forums and/or BWB Club global meetings,
Contact us if you are interested in offering a Workshop to help our future leaders.

Destination Workshops: Get Involved
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Destination Workshop
Mane Nalbandyan
IE University, Spain

Mane Nalbandyan shared with us what it is like studying in Spain.  Mane is originally from Armenia when she started her career as a marketing and social media expert in a gaming company.  She has always been passionate about education and moved to the international education sector for the past 5 years.  She works as a Senior Regional Manager for the Asia Pacific region in IE University´s Global Markets team. Having international education and spending a year in IE University, she is now based in Madrid and heads IE´s international offices in Asia and Oceania in order to guide students through their educational journeyClick here for information about studying in EU and Spain.


Destination Expert - Study in the USA

Rita Chakravorty, MEd.

Founder and Lead Consultant for College Admissions at CollegeSmartboard

For more than 18 years, Ms. Chakravorty has guided students from across the globe to top American universities such as Stanford, Berkeley, Wharton, UPenn and beyond (click on the link for the full list in 2022 and 2023).  Guided by their unique methodology of Design Thinking, Ms.Chakravorty and her team facilitate the college admission application process by providing comprehensive and personalized services to students from 9th to12th grade, from time management to career guidance and beyond.  She has a background in educational  psychology and pedagogy and has spent many years teaching at college level, participated in instructional design and as a scorer /rater for ETS;  no wonder CollegeSmartboard's students get one of their top three choices. She is also a member of IECA and International ACAC and SACAC.  Recently, Ms. Chakravorty answered our questions on the benefits of studying in the USA and how to prepare for it.  Click on the link for our Q&A chat.

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Destination Expert - Study in UK & EU

LSE and King's College

Andrew Hand

Advisory Board

Global Education Destinations

With tertiary qualifications in English Literature and Language, Sociology and Education, Andrew is a broadly experienced secondary educator serving 37 years as a teacher, administrator and educational leader in state and international schools in Australia, Malaysia, Switzerland, the United States and Germany, including the International School of Geneva and the United Nations International School, New York. He has led international education committees within the Educational Collaborative for International Schools and the Association of Australasian IB Schools.   Mr. Hands recently shares the advantages of studying at two of the UK's top educational institutions: the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE) and King's College in this interview. Click on the link for our Q&A chat.


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Destination Expert - SDG10
Reduced Inequalities

Lauren Schmidt, MSW
Service Learning and Fellowship
Fellowship with A Tree That Grows, Tanzania

Lauren Schmidt, MSW is a social entrepreneur and founder of A Tree That Grows, where she helps build the next generation of teen social entrepreneurs. She is a graduate of Columbia University, a member of the Association of International Educators and the Association of International Schools in Africa. Lauren has lived in Tanzania for 10 years working as a Dean of Students on international development projects. Lauren currently helps students share their unique impact in essays as an App Mentor at Crimson Education, resulting in acceptance at Havard, Yale, MIT, Columbia, and many more.


Destination Expert - SDG1
No Poverty

Natalie Ngu
Strategic Partnerships Associate

Natalie Ngu is a Strategic Partnerships Associate of KIVA.  Kiva ( is a mission-driven technology non-profit. We run a global marketplace platform for crowd-funded micro-loans to serve the financially excluded in sectors such as education, water, clean energy, and refugee resettlement. Kiva combines the culture and approach of an internet start-up with a mission to alleviate poverty. We aim to drive social impact and enable opportunity while providing a borrower-to-lender connection: “Loans that change lives."    In just 15 years, Kiva has raised nearly $1.5 billion in loan capital for more than 2 million borrowers in 84 countries. Kiva’s lenders fund over $1 million in loans every 3 days.


Destination Expert - SDG3
Good Health and Wellbeing

Valmir Gomes
International Education, Brazil

Valmir Gomes is an international educator and leader with experience in Brazil, China and the USA. He has worked as a humanities and technology teacher. In school leadership, he has worked as an Academic Dean, Student Dean and Principal and Educational Technology Specialist. He is currently a consultant in projects involving business development, educational initiatives and team development.  Some of the companies he works with are PLUSSED+ and the Institute for Development Impact. In his last principal position, he led the Middle and Upper School Division of  Whittle School & Studios in Washington, DC.

Destination Workshops: Get Involved

Destination Expert - Australia
Todd St. Vrain
University of Melbourne

Todd St Vrain leads the North America office for the University of Melbourne, engaging with future students with an interest to pursue studies at Australia’s leading university.  A dual American-Australian citizen, his 30-year career has included working at high schools, universities and non-profits in the US, Australia, Brazil, Jamaica and Italy.  Todd strongly believes in fostering young people’s identity as global citizens, enabling them to have international and intercultural experiences and encouraging them to serve their local communities. 


Destination Workshop
Arizona State University
Julia Tebben

Julia Tebben focuses on ensuring that international students have the resources they need to find career satisfaction and success. Prior to coming to ASU she taught English in Busan, South Korea and served as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Ojtjiwarango, Namibia.  Julia has also directed multiple study-abroad programs to the Dominican Republic and worked in various non-profits focusing on development and fundraising. She is passionate about positive change through service, education, and cultural exchange, and enjoys helping others to capitalize on their skills in order to make a difference in the communities.

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Destination Expert - New Zealand
Kim Wall
High School Director
LENZ - Look Education New Zealand

With over 15 years of experience in the education industry, Kim’s roles have included Primary and High School teacher (NZ and overseas), Learning Differences Leader, International Student Manager and Director, and Education Consultant. With a particular interest in Educational Psychology, Kim believes in unlocking a student’s potential through exceptional education and life experiences. As the High School Director at Look Education New Zealand (LENZ), Kim offers education and pathway guidance to support individual needs and career goals.   Click on the link for our Q&A about studying in EU and UK.

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Destination Workshop
Dr. Barahona
Understanding Sustainability
Veritas University, Costa Rica

In October 2021, Dr. Barahona shared with us what it is like studying ecotourism at Veritas University in Costa Rica.  Veritas University is known for its innovative creative industry bachelor’s and Licenciatura degrees.  Veritas has hosted 700+ students per year at the Center for International Programs & Sustainability Studies.

Dr. Barahona developed experience in leadership, executive management, financial oversight, community relations, strategic planning, and project development. She is committed to education initiatives with a socio-economic and environmental impact focus both at local and global levels. Alejandra is passionate about creating educational opportunities for students who want to explore sustainability and social justice in Costa Rica.


Destination Expert - SDG6
Clean Water and Sanitation
Mitchelle LeGrand
Educational Programs Manager
H2OforLife, USA

Mitchell LeGrand is the Educational Programs Manager at H2OforLife, a nonprofit dedicated to educating students on how they can take action on the global water crisis. He works with schools, teachers, and students that support W.A.S.H. (water, access, sanitation, and hygiene) interventions. He has worked with H2OforLife for four years but participated in the program as a high school student. His educational background is in global studies and political economics, with his research being on the intersection of education and peacebuilding, both of which are essential to his work at H2OforLife. With nearly a decade of nonprofit and education experience, Mitchell is always excited to work with young people who want to change the world!


Destination Workshop
Dr. Liu-Lastres
Indiana University–Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI), USA

In October 2021, Dr. Liu-Lastres shared with us what it is like studying Sports Tourism in IUPUI, USA.  IUPUI is ranked 2nd in the United States and #28 globally in Sustainability by Times Higher Education.  It is a nine-time winner of the Higher Education Excellence in Diversity from Insight into Diversity and it is among the Top 50 US universities for Best Undergraduate Teaching as ranked by US News and World.  Dr. Liu-Lastres, the workshop leader, focuses her research on risk and crisis communication / management in tourism and hospitality, tourist safety and security, social media in tourism and hospitality, and tourism management.

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Destination Workshop
Ango Mwakisu
(UAE Campus)

Ango Mwakisu has been serving as a recruitment and admissions officer for more than 10 years.  Originally from the beautiful land of Kilimanjaro and Zanzibar, Tanzania, Ango is an alumnus of Jacobs University where he received both his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in Communications, Systems and Electronics. He is an active member of the International Advisory Committee of the Collegeboard and the Governance and Nominating Committee of the International Association for College Admission Counseling.  Mwakisu recently joined NYU in Abu Dhabi to continue his work in international recruitment counseling.  


Destination Expert - Germany
Christina Tannous
CASA Consultancy

Ms. Christina Tannous, the Co-Founder and Business Development Manager of CASA Consultancy. A skilled
engineer with a talent for managing partnerships and closing deals, Christina is a driving force behind CASA's
success. Her expertise lies in creating meaningful collaborations and ensuring that students receive tailored
guidance. With her strong focus on client satisfaction, Christina ensures that CASA Consultancy's services
remain at the forefront of the educational consultancy landscape, helping students embark on successful
journeys to study in Germany. Click here for our Q&A about studying in Germany.


Destination Expert
UK, Scotland and Beyond
Phil Garner

Phil Garner has been in education for more than 35 years.  He taught Biology and Physical Education, supported domestic and international students in Canada, US and UK.  Phill was the founding headmaster of Newcastle School for Boys (UK) and was one of the founding directors of an innovative Free School based in the West End of Newcastle upon Tyne in UK.  Currently, Phil is working with students who are applying for universities in the USA, Canada, UK, Scotland and beyond.  Phil is passionate about helping students to find scholarships and financial aid to achieve their dreams of studying abroad.

Destination Workshops: Get Involved
Destination Workshops: Get Involved
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Destination Workshop
Dr. Bahir
International Psychology with
The Chicago School, USA

Sabrina Bahir is the Director of Global Enrollment Management at The Chicago School of Professional Psychology in the U.S. She is a former private school principal and volunteer ambassador to Ukraine on behalf of Israel. Her vision is to provide equitable access to education in the U.S. and advocate for the unique needs of international students. Sabrina is also a current doctoral student in the field of International Psychology and is researching the eradication of statelessness in Côte d'Ivoire, West Africa, in partnership with the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR).

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Destination Expert - SDG8
Decent Work and Economic Growth
Dr. Markovich-Morris
Brookings Institute, USA

In October 2021, Dr. Emily Markovich Morris shared with us her research on social justice and equality through formal and conformal education as the Director of the International Training and Education Program at the American University.  Dr. Morris is a scholar and educator of comparative education and international development whose research explores how to build collaborations between learning institutions, families, and communities to support marginalized youth in reaching their educational, work, and life aspirations. As a fellow in the Center for Universal Education, Morris coordinates family engagement in education efforts and leads research on leveraging family-school-community partnerships to transform educational systems.

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Destination Expert - SDG9
Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure
Tung Nan University

In October 2021, Dr. Victor Tao shared with us what it is like working with NGOs in Taiwan on green tourism.  Dr. Tao is a geographer who seeks the key to peace and sustainable development for all human kinds.  He has given speeches and led many geographical and geological research projects in Taiwan, China, New Zealand and the Netherlands.  Most recently he co-led the Project for Social Responsibility, funded by the Department of Education in Taiwan (Republic of China).

Victor is also a Research Fellow at Taiwan International Institute for Water Education, a UNESCO partner.  Victor has a PhD in Geography from National Taiwan University.

Destination Workshops: Get Involved
Destination Workshops: Get Involved
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