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Introducing the Inaugural Professional Development Cohort!

Updated: Sep 14, 2018

We are thrilled to share our inaugural Professional Development cohort with our GCI community!

Educators from around the world will be joining us next week to kick-off GCI’s first PD Seminar designed to introduce GCI’s ethics-based leadership curriculum to teachers interested in fostering leadership skills and enhancing global competence and citizenship in their students. Eleven teachers from 11 different schools hailing from five countries will arrive and participate in a Design Thinking Workshop, shadow a discussion-based learning session and learn how to lead one on their own, explore the themes of excellence, engagement and ethics during academic sessions with GCI Faculty and observe the Fellows working on their Glocal Service Projects in their small groups.This will be an amazing opportunity to meet like-minded and passionate teachers as well as interact with a global cohort of students interested in taking action.


Dr. Brendan Byrne

Citizenship: United States

Job Title: Head of Middle School

School/Company: The Harvey School

NY, United States

Dr. Byrne in an education leader with over nineteen years of experience. He has been a member of The Harvey School’s faculty since 1999 and served in a multitude

of roles, from middle school coach, English teacher and student advisor, to grade level dean and current Head of Middle School. Dr. Byrne is eager to attend the Seminar as his school is revisiting elements of its curriculum that address issues related to global citizenship, diversity, ethics and design thinking. The phrase “Think Global, Act Local” is often used at his school, but he would like to more intentionally put that phrase into action. Dr. Byrne holds a PhD in Educational Leadership from Manhattanville College, an MSc in Teaching from Fordham University and a BA in English from University at Albany.

Dr. Gilles Chosson

Citizenship: France

Job Title: Director of Global Education

School/Company: King School

CT, United States

Dr. Chosson is a versatile educator and supervisor with seventeen years of teaching experience in the United States. He has spent five years of developing and managing a K-12 Global Education Program, five years of designing, conducting and supervising French language programs both at the college and high school levels, and four years of PhD research. He was inspired to attend the Professional Development Seminar by the work that his students at King School achieved during the Summit and by the exceptional teaching they received from the educators who engaged with them. He is eager to learn and yearns to train in facilitating discussion-based learning as he would like to incorporate it into his Global Studies courses in the future.

Dr. Christy Folsom

Citizenship: United States

Job Title: Instructional Coach

School/Company: King's Academy

Madaba-Manja, Jordan

Dr. Folsom is an educator with 29 years of experience. The GCI Professional Development Seminar caught her eye as it focuses on three of her favorite areas of education—preparing students for leadership, curriculum that teaches ethics, and project-based learning. She believes this seminar will give her new approaches to teaching leadership skills, provide additional perspectives on designing curricula that include the teaching of ethics, and introduce her to new ways of designing project-based learning across disciplines that will be valuable for the faculty peers at King’s Academy in Jordan. She looks forward to learning from the instructors and fellow participants and sharing what she has learned about teaching leadership skills, ethics and project-based learning during her years of teaching.

Dr. Puanani Higa

Citizenship: United States

Job Title: Curriculum Coordinator

School/Company: Kamehameha Schools

HI, United States

Dr. Higa has been part of the Kamehameha Schools community since 2010. As Curriculum Coordinator, she facilitates high school curriculum renewal efforts to develop, refine, align, asses and evaluate curricular work in collaboration with department heads and leadership. Previously, she served as Tri-Campus Design Specialist, where she developed processes to create tri-campus benchmarks and rubrics to infuse Hawaiian cultural knowledge and 21st century skills. Before joining Kamehameha Schools, Ms. Higa was an Assistant Instructor at the Hawai’i Association of Independent Schools in Honolulu. Dr. Higa is curious about discussion-based learning and how it can empower students.

Mr. Shaun D. Iwasawa

Citizenship: Canada

Job Title: English Language Teacher

School/Company: Kaisei Academy

Tokyo, Japan

Mr. Iwasawa is an educator with experience working at public and private schools, as well as universities. He has taught students ranging in age from 3 to 75. In his current role of English Language Teacher at Kaisei Academy, he is also learning how to be a university counselor for students applying to Ivy League schools. Mr. Iwasawa is interested in GCI’s ethics-based leadership curriculum training as he believes it is important to introduce his students to this style of learning, so they may be well-prepared for pursuing studies outside of Japan.

Mr. Thomas Kennelly

Citizenship: United States

Job Title: Program Director, History and Global Understanding

School/Company: Boston Latin School

MA, United States

Mr. Kennelly leads the 17 member history department at Boston Latin School, teaches world history and is Associate Director of the Clough Center for Global

Understanding. The Clough Center supports faculty in their work developing students into global citizens and leaders by planning professional development, school programming and faculty/student travel that sustains the school’s mission of advancing active and engaged global citizens. He established the BLS-Beijing Home Stay Exchange Program between Boston Latin School and Experimental High School Attached to Beijing Normal University and has presented at global education conferences on his work with the Clough Center.

Ms. Humairaa Mahomed

Citizenship: South Africa

Job Title: Faculty Member

School/Company: African Leadership Academy

Honeydew, South Africa

Ms. Mahomed currently designs curricula for the Leadership module of the Student Enterprise Program, a core component of the Entrepreneurial Leadership course at African Leadership Academy (ALA). An engineer by training, Ms. Mahomed’s intention is to engage with educators from diverse backgrounds and to learn ethics-based leadership curriculum design, which can be implemented in ALA’s Student Enterprise Program. She seeks to develop her capacity for effectively designing learning experiences that build students’ abilities to engage in meaningful conversations, understand the art and science of learning and transformation, and enable others to practice self, community and environmental leadership, using effective, efficient, innovative and sustainable design and operational methods.

Ms. Heather Pritchard

Citizenship: United States

Job Title: Teacher

School/Company: The Town of Belmont

MA, United States

Ms. Pritchard is a high school social studies teacher with over five years of experience. She holds a Masters in Education from the Harvard Graduate School of Education, a Masters in Theological Studies from the Harvard Divinity School, and a Bachelor of Arts in History and Political Science from Capital University. As an educator, she strives to help her students acknowledge and understand the perspectives of others. Ms. Pritchard is looking forward to learning strategies that she can implement in her classroom that will help all students realize the individual potential that her students perceive in themselves. Her hope is to better help students realize that they should and can do things in the world to improve the lives of others.

Mr. Kevin Schooling

Citizenship: United States

Job Title: Vice Principal

School/Company: United World College Changshu

Changshu, China

Mr. Schooling is an educator with over 25 years of experience who has led educational institutions in both China and the United States since 2001. He holds

a Master of Arts in Teaching from the University of Louisville, a Master of Arts in Educational Leadership from Cairn University, and a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science with a Minor in History from Carson Newman College. Mr. Schooling believes firmly in developing as an educator alongside peers in trust and self-reflection. He looks forward to furthering his professional development serving with colleagues within collaborative teams.

Ms. Kim Young

Citizenship: United States

Job Title: Social Studies Teacher

School/Company: Weston Public Schools

MA, United States

Ms. Young is a high school social studies teacher with over 11 years of experience. As an educator, she strives to bring the world into her classroom, so her students come into contact with the unfamiliar and see how their local context is connected to the world around them. Promoting global education is her passion, and she believes it is important for students to develop skills for constructing their own frameworks of knowledge to be fully-informed as they make decisions on how to take action. Ms. Young enjoys the process of seeing the world one way, discovering new diverse perspectives, and radically or subtly reshaping the way she thinks. She looks forward to continuing this process of learning and professional development at the Seminar.

Mr. Tomio Yamamoto

Citizenship: Japan

Job Title: English/ESL Teacher

School/Company: Keio Senior High School

Fujisawa, Japan

Mr. Yamamoto has been an English teacher since 2007. He strongly believes in nurturing students to spend time outside of their comfort zone and serves as an International Affairs official at Keio Senior High School in addition to his role as an English teacher. Mr. Yamamoto hopes to acquire a new way of teaching, one that provides his students with 21st century skills. He looks forward to sharing the GCI Method with the Keio system and eventually with the Japanese educational system to educate exceptional leaders. Mr. Yamamoto serves as head coach of the school basketball team, where he aims to create not only good basketball players but also greater people through the experience. He holds a Bachelor of Arts in Ethics from Keio University.


Thank you for your continued support. We are so excited to share these new GCI Educators' journeys as global educators with you!


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