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Volunteer OverseasVolunteer Overseas

North American Personnel

Projects Abroad Inc., which has offices in New York City and Toronto, is responsible for helping Americans and Canadians pick out the projects that might suit them. They also help spread the word about our projects by managing contacts with high schools, universities, student groups and gap year advisors.

Tom Pastorius - Head of Global Recruitment Tom Pastorius
Head of Global Recruitment

Hometown: Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA
Education: B.A. in Philosophy, Princeton University, M.S. in Business in Administration, New York University
Favorite travel experience: Crossing a glacier in Patagonia
Projects Abroad countries visited: Argentina, Bolivia, Botswana, Cambodia, China, India, Italy, Jamaica, Ghana, Mexico, Mongolia, Nepal, Peru, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Vietnam

Ashima Dhingra - Director for Canada Ashima Dhingra
Director for Canada

Hometown: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Education: B.A. in Business Administration, Schulich School of Business
Favorite travel experience: Climbing Mt. Kilimanjaro and making it in time to see the sunrise from the top of the mountain.
Projects Abroad countries visited: Bolivia, Botswana, Cambodia, China, Ghana, India, Italy, Mexico, Peru, South Africa, Tanzania, Thailand, Vietnam

Christian Clark - Deputy Director for USA Christian Clark
Deputy Director for USA

Hometown: Tuftonboro, New Hampshire, USA
Education: B.A in History and Expository Writing, Skidmore College; M.A. in Irish and Irish-American Studies, New York University
Favorite travel experience: Watching the Thai countryside slowly pass by and making new friends on the 17-hour train ride from Bangkok to Chiang Mai, Thailand.
Projects Abroad countries visited: Belize, Botswana, Cambodia, Costa Rica, Ghana, India, Italy, Jamaica, Mongolia, Morocco, Nepal, South Africa, Thailand.

Khadija Benchlikha - Program Advisor Khadija Benchlikha
Program Advisor

Hometown: Rabat, Morocco
Education: B.A. & M.A. Communications and Marketing, Institute for Leadership and Communication Studies
Favorite travel experience: Teaching locals about environmental issues and how to prevent them in Senegal
Projects Abroad countries visited: Mexico, Morocco, Senegal

Kaisa Partanen - Program Advisor Kaisa Partanen
Program Advisor

Hometown: Tampere, Finland
Education: B.A. in French Studies, Concordia University; M.A in French Studies (Translation and Linguistics), York University
Favorite travel experience: Learning about traditional African folktales around a beach bonfire in Ghana
Projects Abroad countries visited: Costa Rica, Ghana, Mexico, Mongolia, Morocco

Alejandra Estrada Guzman - Program Advisor Alejandra Estrada Guzman
Program Advisor

Hometown: Cochabamba, Bolivia
Education: B.A. in Translation and Linguistics, University of San Simon
Favorite travel experience: Visiting the “end of the world” in Patagonia, Argentina- especially canoeing and ice trekking while I was there.
Projects Abroad countries visited: Argentina, Bolivia, Ghana, and Mexico

Nathalie Claessens - Program Advisor Nathalie Claessens
Program Advisor

Hometown: Born in Belgium from a Belgian father & Rwandan mother, grew up in West Africa
Education: B.A. Political Science, Universite du Quebec
Favorite travel experience: Traveling in the Caribbean and South America
Projects Abroad countries visited: Ghana, Italy, Morocco, Peru, Senegal, Togo

Monica Alarcon - Program Advisor Monica Alarcon
Program Advisor

Hometown: Culiacan, Sinaloa, Mexico
Education: B.S. in Communication & M.A. in Marketing, Monterrey Institute of Technology
Favorite travel experience: Road tripping through Spain with my family
Projects Abroad countries visited: China, Italy, Mexico

Carly Ruberti - Program Advisor Carly Ruberti
Program Advisor

Hometown: Madison, Connecticut, USA
Education: B.A. in Political Science, Shippensburg University
Favorite travel experience: Zip-lining through the jungles of Thailand
Projects Abroad countries visited: Thailand

Laura Kaer - Program Advisor Laura Kaer
Program Advisor

Hometown: Berkeley, California, USA
Education: B.A. in Government Studies, Georgetown University
Favorite travel experience: Backpacking through Vietnam for 5 weeks
Projects Abroad countries visited: Fiji, Italy, Mexico, Thailand, Vietnam

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