Faculty and Staff

My professors were still actively working in the field of conflict transformation and were bringing those experiences into the classroom to discuss with us. I was truly inspired by our professors and the work they were doing.”

Shayne Bell
MA in Conflict Transformation
Project Manager, Chemonics International

Meet Our Faculty

SIT Graduate Institute classroomSIT Graduate Institute faculty practice what they teach.

With expertise in conflict transformation, international development, English and foreign language learning, international education, social justice, management, and human rights, faculty at SIT Graduate Institute come together at an institution that bridges practice and theory.

SIT faculty have worked across the world as consultants, trainers, and developers in the business, nonprofit, education, and public sectors. They are the founders and directors of NGOs and have consulted on projects for the US State Department, NGOs, and other public- and private-sector organizations and agencies. Many SIT faculty are returned Peace Corps volunteers. They have published research on a diversity of topics ranging from sustainable industrial development to brain-friendly learning and the role of technology in language teaching.

SIT faculty, affiliated faculty, and practitioners-in-residence from across the World Learning network provide valuable resources and professional connections for SIT students in the areas of language teaching, international education, international exchange, and development.

Sophia Howlett
Sophia Howlett

President, School for International Training

Dr. Howlett comes to SIT from Kean University in New Jersey, where she was Associate Vice President for Academic Affairs. She holds a PhD in European Renaissance Philosophy and Literature from University of York, UK, and a BA in English Literature from Cambridge University.

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Kenneth Williams
Kenneth Williams

Graduate Dean

Kenneth Williams completed his doctorate in organization and leadership at Columbia University and his master's degree at the London School of Economics. He teaches the courses Organizational Behavior and Team Development; Organizational Behavior and Leadership; Social Identity; Research, Decision-Making, and Analysis; Qualitative Research Methodology; Quantitative Research Methodology using SPSS and Excel; Leadership, Community and Coalition-Building.

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Imraan Buccus
Imraan Buccus

Senior Practitioner
Peace and Justice Leadership

Imraan Buccus has an undergraduate degree in education and a master’s degree in social policy from the Institute for Social and Economic Research at the University of KwaZulu-Natal (UKZN). He is currently a PhD fellow at UKZN’s School of Politics, where he has also been a lecturer. He is widely published in academic journals and book chapters and is the former editor of the journal Critical Dialogue and the current editor of Democracy Dialogue.

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Udi Butler
Udi Butler

Assistant Professor and Chair
Sustainable Development

 

Dr. Udi Butler has been active in the field of ethnographic and participatory action research for the last 17 years.

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Bruce W. Dayton
Bruce W. Dayton

Executive Director, CONTACT
Associate Professor and Chair
Peace and Justice Leadership

Bruce W. Dayton (PhD, Syracuse University, 1999) has been active in peacebuilding and conflict transformation work for over twenty years as a practitioner, a researcher, and an educator. His work focuses on the intersection of social identity and intractable conflicts and the role that intermediaries can play in transforming them.

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Sora Friedman
Sora Friedman

Professor and Chair
International Education (low residency)

Dr. Sora Friedman has worked in international education (IE) for 35 years, focusing on the preparation of new professionals in the field, IE management training, exchange program management, public diplomacy, and international policy advocacy.

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Alla Korzh
Alla Korzh

Assistant Professor
International Education (low residency)

Dr. Alla Korzh is an educator, researcher, and practitioner in the field of international education with a regional focus on Eastern Europe. She holds a doctorate in international educational development from Teachers College, Columbia University.

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Nicolas Stahelin
Nicolas Stahelin

Assistant Professor
Climate Change and Global Sustainability

Nicolas Stahelin is an educator and political ecologist who has worked in the field of experiential learning, international and cross-cultural exchange, school-community partnerships, and higher education for nearly 15 years.

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Elka Todeva
Elka Todeva

Professor
TESOL online with Vermont residencies

Elka holds a doctorate in English applied linguistics and a master’s degree in British and American literature, English linguistics, and simultaneous interpretation. At SIT Graduate Institute since 1993, she teaches and does research in the areas of second language acquisition, English applied linguistics, critical pedagogy, language analysis, multilingualism, teacher cognition, and ecological approaches to teaching.

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Leslie Turpin
Leslie Turpin

Associate Professor and Chair
TESOL online with Vermont residencies

After teacher-training in refugee camps in Thailand, Leslie began teaching in SIT’s MA in teaching programs in 1989. Her interests include refugee adjustment, cultural identity and memory, cultural and linguistic revitalization, reflective practice, classroom inquiry, teaching practice, literacy non-formal education, and teaching supervision.

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Richard Walz
Richard Walz

Associate Professor and Program Chair
Climate Change and Global Sustainability

Richard Walz completed his PhD at the University of Florida, where he served as a foreign language and area studies fellow at the Center for African Studies. Funded by Fulbright-Hays, his doctoral research produced a 1,500-year history of human settlement and environmental change for the region between the Swahili Coast and the Eastern Arc Mountains of northeastern Tanzania.

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Marti Anderson
Marti Anderson

TESOL online with Vermont residencies

Marti Anderson has taught, trained, and supported teachers in both formal and nonformal contexts for 25 years.  She has worked with teachers of English and French as well as those who teach non-language subjects and trainers who work in the trades and other technical environments.

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Tatsushi Arai
Tatsushi Arai

Professor
Peace and Justice Leadership

Dr Tatsushi Arai is a professor of Peacebuilding and Conflict Transformation at the School for International Training (SIT) and a faculty member of Conflict Transformation Across Cultures (CONTACT), SIT’s summer peacebuilding institute.

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Susan Barduhn
Susan Barduhn

Professor Emerita
TESOL online with Vermont residencies

Professor Emerita Susan Barduhn joined the faculty at SIT in 2003. She directed the summer MA in TESOL program for 12 years and helped design and launch the low-residency MA in TESOL program. She was also director of SIT’s Professional Development and Teacher Training Institute.

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Suzanne Belleci
Suzanne Belleci

International Education (low residency)
Peace and Justice Leadership

Suzanne Belleci has been teaching conflict transformation, social justice, cross-cultural communication, and management courses at SIT for 17 years. She served as SIT’s first ombudsperson, bringing groups together, facilitating dialog circles for conflict resolution, and mediating one-on-one disputes. 

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Karen Stromgren Blanchard
Karen Stromgren Blanchard

Associate Professor and Chair
Intercultural Service, Leadership, and Management

A member of SIT Graduate Institute's faculty since 1988, Karen Blanchard developed and taught the Institute’s first course in conflict transformation. She also has directed a training program for Southeast Asian development professionals in the US and in Southeast Asia, and has been an academic director in Nepal. 

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Mokhtar Bouba
Mokhtar Bouba

Assistant Professor
Intercultural Service, Leadership, and Management

Mokhtar received a doctorate in education and leadership studies from Franklin Pierce University in New Hampshire. He also holds an MEd in education for social justice from Keene State College in New Hampshire and an MA in service, leadership, and management from SIT Graduate Institute. 

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Wil Burns
Wil Burns

Climate Change and Global Sustainability

Dr. Wil Burns serves as the director of the Center for Land, Environment, and Natural Resources (CLEANR) at the University of California, Irvine School of Law. Previously, he served as founding co-executive director of the Forum for Climate Engineering Assessment, a think-tank within the School of International Service at American University in Washington, DC.

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Ray Clark
Ray Clark

Professor Emeritus
TESOL online with Vermont residencies

Ray Clark has been involved in the world of language teaching and learning since 1963 when he was immersed in TEFL training at the University of California, Los Angeles as a Peace Corps Volunteer for Nigeria. 

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Lynée Connelly
Lynée Connelly

International Education (low residency)

Lynée Connelly holds a BA in linguistics and Italian and an MA in international education. She is currently a PhD student at the California Institute for Integral Studies. Her dissertation focuses on the influence and impact of international education during the five-year post-reentry period.

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Davina P. Durgana
Davina P. Durgana

Assistant Professor
Sustainable Development

Dr. Davina P. Durgana is an assistant professor at SIT Graduate Institute in Washington, D.C. where she served as the faculty lead for the Inclusive Security Certificate Program. She was named the 2016 Statistical Advocate of the Year by the American Statistical Association and as a Forbes Top 30 Under 30 in Science for 2017 for her work on statistical modeling, human security theory, and modern slavery.

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Javier Fochesatto
Javier Fochesatto

Professor and Department Chair
Climate Change and Global Sustainability

Dr. Fochesatto is associate professor of atmospheric sciences at the University of Alaska, Fairbanks and an expert in the physics of the atmospheric boundary layer (ABL). His research focuses on the ABL related to meteorology and various processes.

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Chris Foley
Chris Foley

Sustainable Development

Christopher T. Foley has worked for the National Democratic Institute (NDI)’s Middle East and North Africa (MENA) team as the deputy regional director since 2004 and has managed field operations and program implementation throughout the region. He has developed expertise in local governance and administrative processes as well as election-day related policies and processes.

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Linda Drake Gobbo
Linda Drake Gobbo

Professor
International Education (low residency)

A former dean of SIT Graduate Institute and member of the faculty since 1984, Linda Drake Gobbo teaches courses and advises students in international education and management in both the online and face-to-face programs. She has travelled as faculty with SIT Graduate Institute programs, and has also provided administrative support from the home campus to various SIT Study Abroad programs in such areas as crisis management, health, student development, and professional staff support.

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Steven Iams
Steven Iams

Assistant Professor
TESOL online with Vermont residencies

Steve is an assistant professor in the MA TESOL program, where he teaches linguistics and curriculum design courses on campus and online. He chairs SIT’s Academic Affairs Committee and serves as faculty coordinator of the Sandanona Conference for Language Teaching and Learning. 

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Amy Jersild
Amy Jersild

Assistant Professor
Sustainable Development

Amy Jersild has over 15 years of professional experience in the field of international development as a manager, technical advisor, and evaluator specializing in migration issues, capacity building, and institutional capacity development, advocacy, and M&E

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Paul LeVasseur
Paul LeVasseur

Intercultural Service, Leadership, and Management

Paul LeVasseur has been a member of SIT Graduate Institute faculty since 1990. He teaches Intercultural Communication, Social Change, Organizational Behavior, Literacy in the ESL Classroom, Teaching the Four Skills, Curriculum Design and Assessment, Way of Council, and Leadership, Community, and Coalition Building.

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Maria Maack
Maria Maack

Climate Change and Global Sustainability

Maria Maack lives in Reykholar/Westfjords, Iceland. She is engaged in research and the implementation of renewable energy solutions and natural resource management as a professional since 1992. She holds a BS in biology and geology, an MS in environmental management and policy and is pursuing PhD studies in ecological economics on the topic of shifting from using oil fuel to renewable electricity and hydrogen for land transport in Iceland.

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Bonnie Mennell
Bonnie Mennell

TESOL online with Vermont residencies

Bonnie Mennell’s work as an educator for the last 39 years has centered on creating inviting, vital, collaborative “containers” for self-directed experiential learning in community—whether that community is a language classroom, a department meeting, a language teacher training session, or a weekend training in The Way of Council.

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Venkatesh Raghavendra
Venkatesh Raghavendra

Sustainable Development

Venkatesh (Venky) Raghavendra is a social entrepreneur with nearly three decades of philanthropy and development experience. He has successfully built global partnerships and mobilized significant resources for a number of international and national organizations.

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Deborah Robinson
Deborah Robinson

Sustainable Development

Dr. Robinson is a senior program manager with more than 20 years’ experience working with organizations in numerous countries. She has lived, worked, and traveled in 70 countries to date and has been involved in a variety of issues, including human rights, environmental justice, racism, sustainable development, emergency management, and violence against women. The thread that ties this work together is that it was all conducted from a social justice perspective and focused on issues of inclusion and marginalization.

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Sarah Roma
Sarah Roma

Sustainable Development

Sarah Roma is an independent consultant with 20 years of experience working globally and domestically on programs and policy change for women and girls. Sarah has expertise in policy advocacy, leadership development, gender analysis and integration, capacity building, curriculum development, training and facilitation, program and policy design and implementation, strategic planning, and organizational change.

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Karla Giuliano Sarr
Karla Giuliano Sarr

Assistant Professor
International Education (low residency)

Karla Giuliano Sarr is an international education practitioner and scholar. Karla's interests include basic education, multilingual education, cultural relevancy, community-school relationships, literacy, girls' education, training, and curriculum development.

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David Shallenberger
David Shallenberger

International Education

 

 

David Shallenberger joined SIT Graduate Institute’s international education program in 2006, after four years serving as director of European and Middle Eastern studies for SIT Study Abroad. He also served for one year as dean of SIT Graduate Institute.

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Alex Silverman
Alex Silverman

Associate Professor
TESOL online with Vermont residencies

Alex Silverman holds master’s degrees in Slavic and French linguistics. A faculty member of SIT Graduate Institute since 1974, he serves as a supervisor and teaches in the areas of general linguistics, methodology, culture, sociolinguistics, and English language and linguistics. 

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Peter Simpson
Peter Simpson

International Education (on campus)

Dr. Peter Simpson currently serves as an advisory board member of Ball State University’s Center for International Development and as an independent consultant in the fields of international exchange, education, and development. 

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Kelly Teamey
Kelly Teamey

International Education (low residency)

Kelly Teamey is a filmmaker, writer, educator, and mother. She is an adjunct instructor in education and sustainable development at SIT and co-founder of the nonprofit organization Enlivened Learning. 

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Syed Aqeel Tirmizi
Syed Aqeel Tirmizi

Intercultural Service, Leadership, and Management

Dr. Aqeel Tirmizi’s professional portfolio includes more than 20 years of international experience in teaching, research, management, and capacity building. The major focus of his work deals extensively with managing and leading in global and multicultural environments as well as working with themes of social justice and social innovation. 

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John Ungerleider
John Ungerleider

Professor
Peace and Justice Leadership

John has been teaching about conflict transformation at SIT for 25 years — a timespan he finds hard to grasp. John started the Youth Peacebuilding and Leadership Programs at SIT, which over the years have brought together future leaders from communities — in locations such as Cyprus, Northern Ireland, the Middle East, Iraq, Rwanda, Pakistan, India, Liberia, and Burma — facing conflict to dialogue about issues and conflicts they have inherited.

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Peter Weiss
Peter Weiss

Climate Change and Global Sustainability

Since its founding in 2005, Dr. Peter Weiss has been director of the University Centre of the Westfjords and its graduate and other programs. Previously, he taught linguistics and literature at the University of Iceland’s Department of Nordic Languages and German.

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Jill Welter
Jill Welter

Climate Change and Global Sustainability

Dr. Jill Welter received her PhD in aquatic ecology and biogeochemistry from Arizona State University. She completed a postdoctoral fellowship at the University of California, Berkeley, and is currently a faculty member at St. Catherine University.

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Ryland White
Ryland White

Professor
Intercultural Service, Leadership, and Management

Ryland White, professor, has been a member of SIT Graduate Institute faculty since 1993. She teaches courses in training design for experiential learning, training for social action, dismantling disability, and ethics and intercultural training design.

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Ray Young
Ray Young

Assistant Professor
International Education (low residency)

Ray received his doctorate in teacher education and curriculum studies and his master’s degree in international education from UMass Amherst.

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Susan Barduhn
Susan Barduhn

Professor Emerita
TESOL online with Vermont residencies

Professor Emerita Susan Barduhn joined the faculty at SIT in 2003. She directed the summer MA in TESOL program for 12 years and helped design and launch the low-residency MA in TESOL program. She was also director of SIT’s Professional Development and Teacher Training Institute.

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Ray Clark
Ray Clark

Professor Emeritus
TESOL online with Vermont residencies

Ray Clark has been involved in the world of language teaching and learning since 1963 when he was immersed in TEFL training at the University of California, Los Angeles as a Peace Corps Volunteer for Nigeria. 

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Alvino Fantini
Alvino Fantini

Professor Emeritus
Language Teacher Education

Alvino E. Fantini holds degrees in Latin American studies, anthropology, and applied linguistics. A senior faculty member since 1964, Alvino helped turn the Sandanona estate into the present SIT Graduate Institute.

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Beatriz Fantini
Beatriz Fantini

Associate Professor Emerita
Director, Language and Culture Department
Language Teacher Education

Beatriz Fantini, director of the Language and Culture Department at SIT Graduate Institute, has worked at World Learning since 1966. She has served in various capacities, including as a Spanish teacher, a teacher trainer, and a supervisor for both the Graduate Institute and Study Abroad. She also ran the summer language programs in Mexico.

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Paula Green
Paula Green

Professor Emerita
CONTACT

 

Dr. Paula Green has 40 years’ experience as a psychologist, peace educator, consultant, and mentor in intergroup relations and conflict resolution.

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Claire B. Halverson
Claire B. Halverson

Professor Emerita

Claire Halverson holds a doctorate in education. A member of SIT Graduate Institute's faculty since 1986, she teaches the courses Organizational Behavior, Multicultural Organization Development, and Social Identity.

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Diane Larsen-Freeman
Diane Larsen-Freeman

Professor Emerita
TESOL online with Vermont residencies

Diane Larsen-Freeman holds a PhD in linguistics from the University of Michigan, where she is professor emerita, having served on faculty from 2002–2012. She is also professor emerita at SIT Graduate Institute, where she was on faculty from 1978–2002. Currently, she is a visiting senior fellow at the University of Pennsylvania.

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Patrick Moran
Patrick Moran

Professor Emeritus
Language Teacher Education

Patrick Moran holds a doctorate in educational studies. A member of SIT Graduate Institute's faculty since 1977, he has a special interest in courses related to French and to the interface of intercultural communication and second language education, a topic he explores in Teaching Culture: Perspectives in Practice (Heinle & Heinle).

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Elizabeth Tannenbaum
Elizabeth Tannenbaum

Professor Emerita
TESOL online with Vermont residencies

Elizabeth Tannenbaum has been a practitioner in the field of ESOL teaching and teacher training for the past 40 years. As an English language teacher, teacher trainer, and curriculum developer, working both internationally and domestically, Elizabeth’s work has focused on adult literacy, refugee resettlement, teaching practice for a variety of contexts, and curriculum development.

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Jeff Unsicker
Jeff Unsicker

Professor Emeritus
Sustainable Development

Jeff Unsicker completed graduate studies in international development, education, policy analysis, and administration. His research focused on the political economy of foreign aid for adult education, rural development, and Ujamaa socialism in Tanzania. A member of SIT's core faculty from 1990-2016, Jeff has also served as academic dean and interim president of SIT Graduate Institute.

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Eric Wirth
Eric Wirth

Associate Dean, SIT Admissions
802 258-3580
eric.wirth@sit.edu 

Eric has worked in the field of education abroad for almost two decades and held roles in admissions, programing, teaching, and senior administration for study abroad and university programs. He holds an MA in applied Hispanic linguistics from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst. He enjoys languages, technology and traveling.

Meghan McMillan
Meghan McMillan

Graduate Programs Outreach Manager
802 258-3421
meghan.mcmillan@sit.edu 

Meghan joined SIT as the graduate programs outreach manager in October 2018 and is based in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Prior to joining SIT, she worked as an enrollment associate at DIS – Study Abroad in Scandinavia, where she advised students during the registration process, managed course enrollment, and helped build relationships with partner institutions. 

Mary Kay Sigda
Mary Kay Sigda

Senior Admissions Officer
802 258-3103
marykay.sigda@sit.edu

Mary Kay is a senior admissions officer with eight years of experience working with students at SIT. Her goal is to help students determine their goals and to align them with their best experience options here at SIT. She is also a member of our adjunct faculty—so the students she helps admit are often in her classroom!

Maira Tungatarova
Maira Tungatarova

Graduate Admissions Officer
802 258-3326
maira.tungatarova@sit.edu

Maira currently serves as a graduate admissions officer. She has worked as a program officer for US Government–sponsored programs such as the Global Undergraduate Program, Teaching Excellence and Achievement Program, and Edmund Muskie Graduate Program at International Research and Exchange Board (IREX), a nonprofit US organization with headquarters in Washington, DC.

Michael P. Smallis
Michael P. Smallis

Dean of Students
Michael Smallis has been SIT’s dean of students since summer 2008. Michael has over twenty-five years of experience in student affairs and is particularly skilled in the areas of student development and leadership, conflict resolution, parent relations, risk mitigation, and crisis management.

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Jennifer Core
Jennifer Core

Assistant Dean of Students for International Programs
Jennifer Core has been working in the field of experiential education, program management, and student affairs for more than 15 years. She holds a master’s degree in intercultural service, leadership, and management from SIT Graduate Institute and a bachelor’s degree in comparative religion and English literature from Pacific Lutheran University; she is currently pursuing a master of arts in teaching.

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Andrea Crommett
Andrea Crommett

Assistant Director of Disability Services​
Andrea “Andee” Crommett has been a member of Disability Services since 2015. She is the Assistant Director of Disability Services.

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Laurie Granger
Laurie Granger

Executive Assistant to the Dean of Students
Laurie Granger is the executive assistant to the dean of students and has worked in various capacities for SIT since 1991. She holds a BA in psychology from the State University of New York at Albany.

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Caitlin Holden
Caitlin Holden

Student Affairs Coordinator, Graduate Programs
Caitlin Holden is the student affairs coordinator for graduate programs and has been working with SIT since the fall of 2016. 

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Cheryl Pennie Williams
Cheryl Pennie Williams

Manager of Student Health Administration
Cheryl Pennie Williams is the manager of student health administration for SIT Study Abroad and SIT Graduate Institute. She holds a bachelor of science in social work, a master’s in information systems from Pace University, and a second master’s in social policy and planning (with a concentration on health, welfare, and urban/rural development) from the London School of Economics.

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