2019 Speakers

 

Leticia Barr

Leticia Barr

Leticia Barr founded her award-winning Tech Savvy Mama site to empower parents raising a digital generation of kids. Since 2008 she’s used her background in child development, psychology, and education to advise parents and tech companies about current technology and trends. Leticia received an Iris Award for her ongoing philanthropic work in Haiti and invited to the White House Travel Summit on Study Abroad and Global Citizenship as one of the top 100 travel and education bloggers in the US. Leticia’s Tech Savvy Mama site was also Parents Magazine’s Editors’ Pick for Best Tech Blog.

 

Kevin Collymore

Kevin Collymore

Kevin Collymore traveled to Shanghai, China, in 2017 to explore cross-cultural counseling, thanks to an Explore the World travel scholarship from Hostelling International USA. The course helped him earn his Master’s degree in Higher Education and Student Affairs from NYU, ultimately preparing him for his current role there as Assistant Director for Advisement and Student Services at the Graduate School of Public Service. Previously, Kevin worked for Barnard College of Columbia University, working primarily with first-generation, low-income students of color. Kevin is passionate about improving college readiness, affordability, diversity, student success, fellowship and global learning.

 

Amelia Dietrich

Dr. Amelia Dietrich

Dr. Amelia Dietrich is the Director for Research and Resources at The Forum on Education Abroad and Interim Editor of Frontiers: The Interdisciplinary Journal of Study Abroad. Amelia’s work focuses on data collection and research efforts in the field of education abroad. She uses that information to develop practical resources that help professionals in the field offer their students safe, high-quality educational experiences abroad. Amelia studied abroad in Italy and Argentina and has traveled throughout Europe and the Americas. Before The Forum, Amelia taught Spanish and conducted research on bilingualism and second language acquisition at Penn State University.

 

Danielle Fossett

Danielle Fossett

Danielle is a 19-year old, first-year college student majoring in Environmental Studies from Long Island, NY. She is a freelance writer and an advocate for youth empowerment and youth involvement within the environmental realm. Danielle recently traveled to India for a semester during her gap year to study the effects of pollution within the vicinity of the Ganga river, as well as climate migration. 

 

Russ Hedge

Russ Hedge

For nearly 30 years, Russ Hedge has been serving the youth travel sector. Since 2000, Russ has been the CEO of Hostelling International USA (HI USA), the nation’s leading hostel brand and a nonprofit with a purpose to create a more tolerant world. As a thought leader within the global travel industry, Russ serves on the Boards of the UN World Tourism Organization, the US Travel Association, and the Alliance for International Exchange. He is Board Chair for the World Youth & Student Educational Travel Confederation and also serves on the US Travel and Tourism Advisory Board. Russ is frequently sought after to speak at conferences and events around the world for his expertise on youth travel, sustainability, and transformative travel.

 

Natalie Jesionka

Natalie Jesionka

Natalie is a professor, media professional and human rights advocate. She has served on the Board of Directors of Amnesty International USA and penned the column "Travel Mirror” for The Daily Muse, focusing on best practices in volunteering and international development. She serves as the Editor of Shatter the Looking Glass, an online magazine that focuses on ethical travel. Natalie is a Paul and Daisy Soros Fellow, and served as a Fulbright Scholar in Thailand researching stateless Hill Tribes and examining the origins of human trafficking. The work led to a partnership with Shine Global, an Oscar Award-winning non-profit production company, on the documentary film The Wrong Light. In 2019, Natalie launched Global Elective, a travel and learning platform that encourages students and lifelong learners to travel ethically and gain access to the world.

 

Mark Overmann

Mark Overmann

Mark is the Vice President of External Affairs at InterExchange. After studying abroad in France and teaching English in China, Mark was hooked on cultural exchange. He’s worked in the international exchange field for nearly 15 years. Prior to joining InterExchange, Mark served for seven years as Deputy Director at the Alliance for International Exchange in DC, advocating for the health and growth of exchange programs. He's also worked as the Director of College Communications at Georgetown University and the Program Associate for Communications at Global Ties U.S.

 

Tinabeth Piña

Tinabeth Piña (Emcee – Day 1 & 2)

Tinabeth is an EMMY award winning broadcast journalist and travel vlogger who has worked in front of the camera and behind the scenes for ABC, FOX, A&E, The History Channel & Oxygen, to name a few. When she isn’t vlogging at TinabethTravels.com, Tinabeth is the creator and executive producer of Globe Scholars, a travel show and web series that follows students on their study abroad trips around the world. Tinabeth is also the Managing Editor at CUNY-TV in New York City and the author of CHA-CHIING! The Unemployed's Guide to Finding Your Next TV Production Job. Follow her @tinabethpina.

 

Beth Santos

Beth Santos (Emcee – Day 3)

Beth Santos is founder and CEO of Wanderful, a global community that connects over 40,000 women together through events in 45 global cities, an international homesharing network, dynamic online content and forums, and inspired, focused campaigns with international travel brands. She is the creator and host of the Women in Travel Summit, a leading event for women travel influencers and industry members, happening on two continents each year, and co-founder of #AtTheTable, a national dinner series and community for female founders. She is a graduate of the Kellogg School of Management and Wellesley College, and is an acclaimed thought leader in entrepreneurship and travel. She lives in Boston.

 

Brooke Roberts

Brooke Roberts

Brooke is a 4x start-up founder, former travel industry executive, author, and TEDx speaker. She’s currently founder and CEO of Brazenist, an online business training and educational travel company helping people create location-independent businesses. Additionally, Brooke is co-founder of The Study Abroad Journal, a practical goal-setting field guide for savvy study abroad students. Throughout her career, Brooke has served as Sr. Vice President at GoAbroad.com, directed a university study abroad office, worked for Semester at Sea, developed international internship programs, and served as faculty for short-term programs abroad. Brooke has lived in 17 different cities worldwide, visited 54 countries on 6 continents, and been to 47 US states. Follow her on Instagram @thenewdorothy.