Current Fellows

2018-2019 Fellows

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Hannah Byrd
English Teacher - ClubAnglais
Tunis, Tunisia

Hi! My name is Hannah Byrd and I am from Bellville, Texas. I just graduated from Baylor University with a BA in International Studies and Arabic and Middle East Studies. I also completed two summers in Middlebury College’s Arabic Language School. As a Virtual Student Federal Service intern for the State Department, I have spent the last year leading an online English-language movie club for Libyan students. I am thrilled to spend the next year in Tunisia, exploring part of the Arab world and practicing my Arabic in real time. My position at ClubAnglais combines my passions for youth empowerment and the MENA region. I am excited for opportunities of growth as I teach English and immerse myself in Tunisian culture.

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Mushfiqur Chowdhury
Civic Engagement Center Coordinator - Cosmos Organization
Tunis, Tunisia

Salam! My name is Mushfiq and I am a born-and-bred New Yorker! I completed my undergrad out on the West Coast at the University of Southern California, studying International Relations and Middle East Studies. Afterward, I returned to the East Coast and completed a master's degree from Harvard Divinity School in Religion Ethics and Politics. My interests are at the cross-sections of religion, movements, human rights, and conflict, closely looking at the way the ethics of force has developed in particular faith traditions and how its gleanings can help us navigate current humanitarian crises. Most recently, I gathered experience working for the Muslim civic engagement organization, the Council on American-Islamic Relations, and persisted in my Arabic studies with another fellowship. I am continuing that experience with Cosmos, where I will be engaging with Tunisia's youth through the second-ever Presidential elections after the 2014 constitution. I am excited to return to the region and work with young Tunisians for the future of Tunisia!

Eliza Davis
Women's Programs Manager - Collateral Repair Project
Amman, Jordan

I’m Eliza, and I graduated from Tufts University in 2018, majoring in International Relations and Middle Eastern Studies. I’ve always been passionate about languages and first started exploring Arabic through the NSLI-Y summer program in Morocco in 2013. At Tufts, I began focusing on displaced populations and spent the summer of 2016 in Greece, volunteering at Katsikas refugee camp. I moved to Lebanon in the fall, where I participated in the year-long intensive Arabic program at IFPO and volunteered at the non-formal education initiative, 26 Letters. I’m excited to continue exploring these issues in Jordan and can’t wait to begin as the Women’s Programs Manager at Collateral Repair Project. I’m also looking forward to struggling to cook new Jordanian recipes and getting lost hiking some of Jordan’s beautiful wadis.

Maddie Ewbank
Civic Engagement Center Coordinator - Cosmos Organization
Tunis, Tunisia

Ahlan! My name is Maddie, and I’m part of Northwestern University’s graduating class of 2018 with a BA in Middle East & North African Studies and a minor in Film & Media Studies. The most meaningful experiences of my undergraduate career have been in service to Chicago’s immigrant and refugee populations, through organizations founded by members of these communities. I am very excited to continue serving grassroots organizations that promote community engagement, education, and empowerment as an Elite Center Coordinator with Cosmos in Tunisia. In the last four years, my pursuit of Arabic language has made it possible for me to live and study in Morocco, Qatar, and Oman. I am deeply grateful for this opportunity to partner with Cosmos to teach and develop English language curricula, so that I can open doors through foreign language education for other students. My other passions include international cinema, hiking, and homemade ice cream — you can find me in my spare time producing and designing sound for student films, walking wherever my shoes will carry me, and experimenting with new ice cream flavors.

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Bryce Feibel
Product Manager - Bayt.com
Amman, Jordan

Hello! My name is Bryce and I am originally from Chicago, Illinois. I graduated from Dickinson College in 2015 with a BA in International Studies with a concentration in the Middle East. Additionally, I received a Security Studies Certificate and a minor in Economics and Arabic. During my time at Dickinson, I had the opportunity to study abroad in Amman, Jordan for a semester. It was during this semester that I fell in love with the country and promised myself that I would return one day to work. Prior to becoming a MENAR Fellow at Bayt.com, I worked for Aon Risk Solutions in the Aon Global Client Network as an International Broker Specialist. I am extremely excited to return to Jordan as a Product Manager for Bayt.com and learn about the Middle East’s tech and startup industry!

Maddie Fisher
English and Arabic Teaching Assistant - EMIS
Tel Aviv, Israel

Hi! My name is Maddie Fisher and I am the MENAR fellow for 2018-2019 at Eastern Mediterranean International School (EMIS). I graduated Magna Cum Laude from Georgetown University in 2017 with a degree in Arabic. Last year I was a Fulbright English Teaching Assistant in Amman, Jordan at the Islamic Educational College for Girls in Jabal Amman teaching fifth through tenth grade Spoken English classes and interning for Jordan's Royal Institute for Inter-Faith Studies. As someone who is passionate about the MENA region and using education and religion as tools for peace-building, I look forward to joining the EMIS community that is committed to dialogue, sustainability, and peace. I am excited to continue teaching both English and Arabic as a language department fellow at EMIS and helping lead dialogue groups and work with the school's reconciliation center this year!

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Hazlett Henderson
Classroom Teacher - Elm International School
Alexandria, Egypt

Hello! I'm Hazlett, originally from Kansas. I graduated from Swarthmore College in 2017 and spent last year working as an English assistant on Reunion Island, a French overseas department in the Indian Ocean. Having studied Arabic at Swarthmore and having spent a semester in Morocco, I am grateful for the chance to return to the MENA region to learn more about teaching in a multicultural context. I am especially excited to be a MENAR fellow for Elm, a school whose mission aligns closely with my values of open inquiry and global citizenship. I'm looking forward to a year of learning and teaching all around.

 

Lisa MacKenzie
Product Manager - Bayt.com
Amman, Jordan

Hi, my name is Lisa. I am from Underhill, Vermont and graduated from Bowdoin College in May 2017 where I studied International Relations. I was drawn to the Middle East and Arabic through participation in the Kennedy-Lugar YES Abroad program in Oman as a high school student, and I continued to pursue interests in the region and language as a student of Arabic in Amman, Jordan in 2015 and 2017. I spent the past several months working as a consultant in Portland, Maine, and I look forward to combining interests in growth strategy and the Middle East as a part of the Bayt.com team. In my free time, I look forward to frequenting cafes, playing football, and walking the hills in Amman.

 

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Jessie Miller
Community Center Programs Manager - Collateral Repair Project
Amman, Jordan

Hey there! My name is Jessie, and I will be moving to Amman, Jordan from Madison, Wisconsin. During my MENAR fellowship, I will be working for Collateral Repair Project as their Community Center Programs Manager. I recently graduated from the University of Wisconsin Madison with majors in Biology and African Literature and Languages. During my time as an undergraduate, I started a non-profit organization called Cardiac on Campus, which advocates for cardiovascular health and awareness. I also conducted neurobiology research during my time at UW Madison and engaged in public health advocacy at a local primary care clinic. I plan on attending medical school in 2020 with the eventual goal of serving Arabic-speaking refugee populations as a physician. I delved into Arabic language studies as a freshman, and they truly took flight in the summer of 2017 when I spent two months in Amman as a Critical Language Scholarship finalist. I love cooking food, going for runs, and reading good books in my free time, and I cannot wait to spend a year in Amman with Collateral Repair Project.

 

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Aiesha Savage
Classroom Teacher - Elm International School
Alexandria, Egypt

My name is Aiesha and I'm originally from Boston, Massachusetts. This year I graduated from Williams College where I double majored in History and Arabic Studies. I was fortunate enough to spend my junior year and the following summer abroad, first in Tunisia and then in Jordan, where I continued my language study and focused on topics critical to the region today. I was also able to do research on civic education in public schools in Tunis and Amman, and that's when I really became interested in education and decided I should try teaching. I'm thrilled to be joining the staff at Elm International School in Alexandria, Egypt to continue learning about international education and curriculum development in a more hands-on setting!