MDP Inaugural Class of 2012

Lise Afoy: Master's in Development Practice: Emory University

Born in the Caribbean (Guadeloupe) and raised in Paris, Lise has studied international relations and anthropology at the City College of New York and Columbia University. She has served as a project coordinator for CARE in Ghana, Togo and Benin, where she organized community-based teacher trainings and developed a project on the prevention of HIV/AIDS among gold miners.  Lise founded and directs a non-profit organization that provides assistance to school-age orphans in Algeria and Benin and has developed community-building programs for hospice patients in New York City.  Her vision as a development practitioner is to help reshape the role that non-governmental organizations play in developing countries.  Lise is fluent in several languages and likes swimming and volleyball.

Jenna Blumenthal: Master's in Development Practice: Emory University

Jenna received her B.A. in government and politics and French from the University of Maryland at College Park.  She began studying French at an international magnet elementary school, where her interest in global issues began, and she pursued studies in the French language and literature at the University of Nice (France).  In college, Jenna tutored elementary school students in reading at a Title I (underserved) school. She also worked with her university’s Office of Sustainability on efforts to teach students strategies to reduce their impact on the environment.  Jenna served as an intern at a Baltimore newspaper, the Department of Education, and with a U.S. senator on Capitol Hill, where she became interested in policy issues.  In addition, she traveled to South Africa where she learned about human rights and HIV/AIDS.  Born and raised in Baltimore, Jenna enjoys running and yoga.  

Miranda Bodfish: Master's in Development Practice: Emory University

Miranda comes to Emory from Seattle, where she coordinated a citizenship preparation program for low-income immigrants and refugees.  She graduated from Denison University in Ohio in 2005 with a degree in International Studies and Black Studies.  She studied abroad in Dakar, Senegal where she conducted research on the role of Islam in rural development.  After graduation, she volunteered for Heifer International in California, teaching community groups about global poverty and leading agricultural service projects.  Miranda’s development interests include gender and economic opportunities for women as well as non-profit management and program evaluation.  Miranda loves bicycling, running, cooking and making handmade paper.

Grey Clevenger: Miranda Bodfish: Master's in Development Practice: Emory University

Gray was born and raised in Richmond, Virginia, where he developed an interest in international affairs and world traveling.  Upon graduating from Furman University with a B.A. in History, Gray taught English in the Japanese public school system in Ishikawa Prefecture as a participant of the Japan Exchange and Teaching (JET) Program.  He has also worked in the health care and corporate sectors for an international law firm.  Gray has traveled extensively through East and Southeast Asia, as well as Eastern Europe and Scandinavia.  His interests range from providing health services to underserved populations to children's education. Gray enjoys playing the guitar and banjo, photography, and biking.

Alicia Clifton: Master's in Development Practice: Emory University

Alicia hails from Houston, TX, and received her B.A. in Intercultural Studies and Linguistics from Houghton College in western New York and a certificate in non-profit management from SUNY at Buffalo.  Before joining the MDP Inaugural Class, Alicia served as the Director of Health and Family Services at Jericho Road Ministries, a community development organization in Buffalo, NY, where she had also previously served as an AmeriCorps VISTA member.  At Jericho Road Ministries, she focused on perinatal health, early literacy, and refugee resettlement issues.  She has engaged in service travel in many countries (Mexico, Costa Rica, Venezuela, Guyana, Peru, India, Papua New Guinea, and others) and spent a semester in the Middle East, where she practiced her knowledge of Arabic.  She is the lead author of a scholarly article on facilitating the self-empowerment of women at-risk in healthcare encounters (Gender Issues, 2009). Alicia's interests include the nexus between conflict resolution and development, as well as the linkages among community nutrition, sustainable agriculture, and global commons issues.  She likes painting, gardening, sailing with her husband, and being an aunt.

Jennie V. Dowdle: Master's in Development Practice: Emory University

JennieV comes to the MDP program from her home in Western North Carolina.  She has a B.A. in Spanish and philosophy from Western Carolina University and spent the last two years as a College Readiness Coach in low-income schools and teaching adult education and ESL.  In addition to working with various international communities and programs in theUnited States, Jennie V spent a semester in Ghana and a year in Costa Rica as a Rotary Scholar, working on environmental, housing, health, and education projects.  Her development interests include community development and social and educational programs directed to underserved youth.  In her spare time, Jennie V enjoys hiking and contradancing.  

Mia Gallegos: Master's in Development Practice: Emory University

Mia graduated from Wake Forest University in May of 2009 with a degree in political science and is completing a certificate in Community Preparedness and Disaster Management from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.  While in college, she studied and volunteered in multiple developing countries, including Honduras, Vietnam, Jamaica, Thailand and Tanzania.  Since her graduation, Mia has worked as a teacher and youth program coordinator in the greater Atlanta area. Her interests include migration, social policy, poverty reduction, human rights, and disaster assistance.  Besides traveling, Mia loves the outdoors; hiking, kayaking, swimming, and scuba diving as well as drawing and painting.

Haley Holt: Master's in Development Practice: Emory University

Haley graduated from Carson-Newman College with a BA in Applied Psychology, a minor in Mathematics, and a concentration in Conflict and Justice Studies.  She also studied at the Imperial College of the University of London.  Haley has worked as a certified teacher in mathematics in underserved U.S. secondary schools and has served as a tutor, mentor, and supervisor for many youth programs.  Haley’s considerable international experience includes teaching English and Swahili in rural Tanzania, providing health education to women in Myanmar and Thailand, and working with orphans in South Africa.  These experiences instilled in her the desire to work with development organizations that seek to provide opportunities for people who do not have access to adequate education and healthcare.  Haley enjoys traveling, working out, dancing, reading, cooking, and chocolate.

Betsy Root: Master's in Development Practice: Emory University

Betsy’s interest in development began when she studied abroad in Ecuador through the Minnesota Studies in International Development program.  In Ecuador, Betsy spent time in a rural town working with a women's cooperative and teaching in an elementary school.  Betsy graduated from Grinnell College in Iowa in 2006 with a double major in Political Science and Spanish.  After graduation she volunteered in Santiago, Chile with the nonprofit organization VEGlobal, which seeks to expand children's educational and social opportunities.  After returning to the United States, Betsy taught Spanish for two years in Washington, DC as a Teach for America Corps member and earned a Master Degree in Education from the American University. Before joining the MDP program, Betsy was teaching Spanish in Atlanta, her hometown.  She is particularly interested in the role of education in development.

Claudie Sossah: Master's in Development Practice: Emory University

Claudie is originally from Togo, West Africa and is interested in health, education, community development and social entrepreneurship. She graduated from the University of Paris II and the University of Pennsylvania with a specialization in non profit management.  She has significant work experience in project development and grants management with universities, non-governmental organizations and foundations. Prior to joining the MDP, she worked with the Women’s Health Coalition on reproductive health and rights and with the International Institute of Education, managing grants on critical languages programs.  As an IFESH Fellow, she implemented community based programs on onchocerciasis control, health education, adult literacy and income generating activities in Nigeria.  Claudie is currently assisting an orphanage in Benin, West Africa, to become financially self-sufficient and provide education to the children.  She is fluent in French and English and plans to learn Arabic.  An experienced hairdresser and tailor, Claudie also hopes to master the art of fine cuisine.

Stephanie Stawicki: Master's in Development Practice: Emory University

Stephanie graduated from Lafayette College with a B.A. in both international affairs and Russian and Eastern European studies.  While in college, she studied abroad in Australia, Russia, Poland, Kenya, and Tanzania. Upon graduation, she worked as a district representative of immigration for a U.S. Congressman.  In 2007, she joined the Peace Corps and served for two years as a health and community development volunteer in The Gambia, West Africa.  While in The Gambia, she worked with women’s groups to revitalize their community gardens and organized maternal and child health campaigns focusing on malaria and diarrhea prevention. Stephanie also served as lead trainer for the Peace Corps administration to design, implement, teach, and evaluate training for Peace Corps trainees and volunteers.  Stephanie’s development interests include public and environmental health, community assessment methods, appropriate technology, and training curricula and tools for development practitioners.  In her free time, she enjoys biking, hiking, painting, and cooking.

Molly Winston: Master's in Development Practice: Emory University

Molly has a Bachelor's in Political Science and Sociology from Fordham University. Molly has worked as an intern with an international philanthropy consulting firm, with the American Red Cross in Greater New York and with Senator Hillary Clinton's constituent affairs office. In addition, she worked with the NGO Unite For Sight to improve vision care among the youth in Ghana. Born and raised in a small town in upstate New York, Molly plays guitar and loves music.