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Site Leaders & Staff Partners for Fall 2021!

Well before the tires hit the road, our incredible team of student Site Leaders and Staff Partners are carefully crafting the transformative experiences that U of U students enjoy each year. These daring darlings of social change coordinate the community engagement, issue education, and reflection pieces on their Alternative Breaks experiences, and they'd love to share their enthusiasm for their work with you. Knowledgeable, hard-working, and passionate about student engagement, these folx are great resources for Alt Breaks participants to connect with the campus community in different areas and ways. While Site Leaders are the go-to for questions about their specific AB experiences, feel free to connect with our Staff/Faculty Partners with any questions about Alternative Breaks, their department and work on campus! Reach out to them if you have any questions about the experiences they're planning!

AB Fall Experience Leadership Teams


 

Joseph Ruben II

SITE LEADER FOR ANIMAL ADVOCACY & REHABILITATION

He, Him, His

Joseph Ruben II

Buloha Fam. My name Is Josefa Matanikalou Lutuniwai Mataikina Kacabotevakadua Rupeni, but you can call me JO, and I'm just a Simple Guy from Fiji. I was born and raised in Fiji which is where I also served a volunteer mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. I moved to Hawaii in 2015 where I got my undergraduate degrees in Information Technology and Systems. While there I Surfed, camped , hiked, danced, worked and just enjoyed life as it came by despite the trials that came with it. I got a wonderful opportunity to be here in Utah getting my Graduate Degree in one of the things I'm passionate about and that is Technology.

Marianne Madsen

STAFF PARTNER FOR ANIMAL ADVOCACY & REHABILITATION

She, Her, Hers

Marianne Madsen

I'm homegrown--born and raised in Salt Lake City, Utah. And I love it here! We love to travel, too, and have been around the world. My husband and I have two daughters, two sons-in-law, four grandchildren, and a cat. I teach Writing for the Sciences at the U, and I've been a scientific/medical writer and editor for many years. I got my BA at the U, then went to Utah State for a Master's degree in healthcare literacy (helping people figure out what their doctor is telling them to do). Then I became a Traditional Naturopath! So I know a lot about things like nutrition, herbs, and homeopathy. My passion is helping people get healthy before they get sick! I like to whitewater raft, and I've been skydiving. Alternative Break is the next adventure!

Marled Galicia

SITE LEADER FOR HOUSING JUSTICE

She, Her, Hers

Marled Galicia

Hi! I wanted to be a site leader for the longest time because I think this program is a great way to get to know people and build fun memorable times. I am super excited for this academic school year because it will be my last year; I want to make every moment one for the books! I am from Salt Lake City, I am Latina, and a fun little fact about me I spent my stimulus on a puppy thanks Biden!

Bryce Williams

STAFF PARTNER FOR HOUSING JUSTICE

He, Him, His

Bryce Williams

Hi All- I'm Bryce. I have the wonderful opportunity to serve as the Student Programs Manager at the Bennion Center. I have been part of the Bennion Center Alternative Breaks program for over 10 years and have experienced 10 different alternative breaks experiences prior to this year. Alt Breaks has shaped the way I live my life and how I interact with others. I enjoy spending time with my partner Katherine and two dogs, Arthur and Buster!

Kathy Tran

SITE LEADER FOR IDENTITY AND ENVIRONMENTAL EXPLORATION

She, Her, Hers

Kathy Tran

Hello all! My name is Kathy Tran and I am extremely ecstatic to be leading the Identity and Environmental Exploration trip this Fall! As someone who grew up in Utah as a first-generation Vietnamese American, navigating my pathway through education was an obstacle that life threw at me. Through the trip, I hope to connect with participants and engage on a meaningful level through active engagement. In my free time, I love tending to my beautiful orchids, listening to R&B music, and enjoying the sun in my hammock! Can't wait to meet everyone!

Leslie Cepeda Echeverria

 

STAFF PARTNER FOR IDENTITY AND ENVIRONMENTAL EXPLORATION

She, Her, Hers, Ella

Leslie Cepeda

Hi everybody, I was born and raised in Colombia, and moved to the US 11 years ago as a political asylee. I graduated from the U with a B.A. in Anthropology and a minor in Human Biology, and later with my M.Ed. in Educational Leadership & Policy. As a Student Success Advocate and a first-generation college student, I am passionate about access and retention for students from underrepresented backgrounds. I believe  students should engage in opportunities where they are exposed to issues that impact marginalized communities, and learn tools to support their communities and grow as advocates. Overall, I love people, family, singing, dancing, traveling, K-drama, and pink color.

Aastha Sharma

SITE LEADER FOR IMMIGRATION

She, Her, Hers

Aastha Sharma

Hey everyone ! My name is Aastha Sharma and i am currently majoring in Finance-AFA. My hometown is New Delhi, India. I love travelling and trying new cuisines. I believe, being a site leader will help me see the wider issue in our society and help me understand how as being a youth global citizen, I can help our society and environment grow in a positive direction.

Christine Schulz

STAFF PARTNER FOR IMMIGRATION

She, Her, Hers

Christine Schulz

Hello! My name is Christine Schulz. I am a student in the Latin American Studies master's program. I am particularly interested in studying civil society organizing, local government, and resource extraction policy in Ecuador and Bolivia. I am really excited to be able to guide and serve as mentor in this experience, as well as grow my own knowledge of planning and participating in community projects. A couple fun facts about me are that I love murder mystery books and I am currently making my way through the Agatha Christie collection and most of my life is spent hanging out with my dog, Bear. Looking forward to this experience!

Alondra Morales

SITE LEADER for school-to-prison pipeline

She, Her, Hers

Alondra Morales

Hello, my name is Alondra Morales! I am a sophomore at The University of Utah, and I am really excited to be part of my first AB experience, I am going to be leading Prison to Pipeline Break, I can't wait to be able to teach others more about this issue and also learn more as well. I love helping part of my community and I am happy that I can be part of this experience! Some cool facts about me are, for a whole summer I listened to Hamilton Album on repeat, I don't like fish but I will eat sushi, and strawberry horchata is the best drink ever (Period)

Asma Hassan

STAFF PARTNER for school-to-prison pipeline

She, Her, Hers

Asma Hassan

My name is Asma (Us-Ma) and I work as the Utah Reads Program Manager at the Bennion Center. I studied Psychology and SPED/Ed. Psych at the U. I am excited to be part of AB this year! I hope to learn more about the program, people, and causes, as I do appreciate the justice framework and implementation. In my free time, I love watching YouTube videos, hanging out with my sisters, and eating Thai food.

Izzy Fuller

SITE LEADER for Urban Environmentalism

She, Her, Hers

Izzy Fuller

Hey everyone, I'm Izzy! I grew up in Wisconsin and came to Utah for college, and I am a fourth year studying urban ecology and environmental & sustainability studies. I am so excited to be leading the Urban Environmentalism Alt Break and sharing my knowledge about topics I'm passionate about. I'm vegan and love cooking/baking, Noah Kahan, and learning new outdoor activities. I'm looking forward to spending a week in a new city learning about urban environmentalism with an awesome group of people (fingers crossed we get to go!).

Grace Hymel

STAFF PARTNER for Urban Environmentalism

She, Her, Hers

Grace Hymel

Hi everyone, I'm Grace! I am the Alt Breaks Program Coordinator in the Bennion Center and I'm excited to participate in my third official AB experience and my first at the U!  I just graduated with my M.S. in Student Affairs from Miami University in Ohio (confusing, I know) and graduated from Loyola University Maryland with my B.A. in Sociology. I am really looking forward to a meaningful week of community, engagement and collaborative learning & unlearning. Some fun facts about me are that I have cage dived with great white sharks, I haven't seen most "classic" movies, and I have a MASSIVE sweet tooth! 

Last Updated: 8/31/21