BROOKE BACH-TANG PHAN | Co-founder/Director

Brooke Bách-Tầng Phan is a PhD student in Education at the University of California, Los Angeles, in the division of Social Studies and Comparative Education. Her diverse research interests include transnational networks of music, global citizenship education and social studies curriculum reform for civic engagement. Prior to coming to UCLA, she taught in France, Singapore, Taiwan and California. She holds a BA in political science and anthropology from Haverford College, a MAT from the UC Irvine and a MA in French with concentration in civilization, culture and society from Middlebury College.

William Geibel | Co-founder/Director

William (Billy) Geibel is a PhD candidate and FLAS Fellow at UCLA, specializing in international and comparative education. As a former Fulbright Scholar and GAANN Fellow in MENA Studies, his research interests include the internationalization of higher education, educational exchange, citizen and educational diplomacy, and intercultural communication, particularly between the US and Middle East. Prior to coming to UCLA, Billy received a M.A in Politics from Brandeis University, a B.A. in Political Science from UCSB, and has worked for the U.S. State Department, the Foundation for California Community Colleges, and the California State Assembly. 

Andrew swindell | Co-founder/Director


Andrew Swindell is a doctoral student in the Social Science and Comparative Education program at the Graduate School of Education & Information Studies, UCLA. His research interests include school choice policy in the United States and Non-State schooling in Myanmar. He has worked as a foreign aid practitioner in Africa and a K-12 teacher in Thailand and Myanmar. He holds a master’s degree in education from the University of Missouri and a bachelor’s degree in economics from Bucknell University.

Andrew can be reached at aswindell@ucla.edu

Team members



Veronika Rozhenkova is a PhD candidate in the Social Sciences and Comparative Education division at UCLA. Currently, she holds the position of a Research Analyst at the BRAID Project (Building, Recruiting, and Inclusion for Diversity), which aims to increase the percentage of women and minority students majoring in computer science. Prior to joining BRAID, she received a fellowship from the Hilton Foundation and has been conducting research as a Conrad N. Hilton Scholar with the WORLD Policy Analysis Center at the UCLA Fielding School of Public Health. Her research has focused on measuring various aspects of public policy in all the UN countries. Veronika’s most recent project with the WORLD has been related to gender equality and girls’ education and empowerment programs in African countries. Prior to her doctoral studies, Veronika received an Ed.M degree in International Education Policy from Harvard University, a Diploma in Philology from Yaroslavl State Pedagogical University, and worked as a university faculty member in Russia. Her current research interests are in international education policy, higher education policy and reform, and diversity and inclusion in higher education.

Deborah Shin


Deborah (Debbie) Shin is currently a PhD student in Social Sciences and Comparative Education at UCLA Graduate School of Education and Information Studies. She serves as an editorial assistant for the Global Commons Review magazine. Her professional experiences include education programs and projects with UNESCO (United Nations Education, Scientific and Cultural Organization), APCEIU (Asia-Pacific Center of Education for International Understanding), the World Education Forum, UNESCO-UCLA Chair on Global Learning and Global Citizenship  Education, and the Paulo Freire Institute-UCLA. She holds a Masters in Public Policy and a B.A. in Sociology. As a former FLAS Fellows and Hiroshi Wagatsuma Fellow, her research topics include comparative study between Korea and the US, internationalization of higher education, and diversity initiatives on campus. Her current research focuses on Global Citizenship Education as a means to reduce and prevent social injustice, inequities, and discrimination.

Lucas lundbye cone

Lucas headshot.jpg

Lucas Lundbye Cone is a PhD student at the Danish School of Education. He earned his MA in Social Sciences and Comparative Education at the Graduate School of Education and Information Studies, University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA). Having taught and conducted educational research in Kenya, the Philippines, Singapore, and Greenland, his current research centers on comparative investigations of educational privatization and its impact on the policies, practices, and values of public education on the primary and secondary levels of schooling.

Yuqing Hou

Yuqing photo.jpg

Yuqing Hou is a second-year PhD student in the Social Science and Comparative Education (SSCE) division of the Graduate School of Education and Information Studies at UCLA. She holds a B.A. in International Studies and Education Studies, and M.A. in Secondary Education both from Brandeis University. Her research interests include comparative education between China and the United States and international students' education. 

Paulina Morales


Paulina is a Ph.D. candidate in Education at the Department of Education & Information Studies at UCLA. Prior to coming to UCLA, she finished her Bachelor degree in Chile, where she also got her teaching credentials in mathematics and physics at the high school level. She also holds a MA in Education from UCLA. Her research is mainly focused in Chile, and how the neoliberal policies implemented during the 80s are still affecting student achievement gaps in standardized test scores. She is using quantitative methods to analyze databases from SIMCE (national standardized tests which measure students at different levels) and looking at which variables affect student scores, including parental involvement, socioeconomic status, and schools administrative dependency, among others. She is also using qualitative methods to capture teachers' perspectives in how they perceive that SIMCE reflect their students' achievements. 

Aline Soares

Foto Aline.jpg

Aline Zero Soares is a Ph.D. student in the Social Sciences and Comparative Education Program at UCLA. She is a member of the Public Policy and Public Management senior executive service in Brazil’s federal government. Her research interests are focused on transformative paradigms of education that seek to address barriers related to poverty, racism, social inequality and other structural issues that impair equality of opportunities in education in Brazil. Aline ’s MA thesis in Public Management and Public Policy discussed the expansion of early childcare services in the City of São Paulo. 

Joseph wright

Screen Shot 2018-10-16 at 7.58.26 PM.png

Joseph Wright is a PhD candidate in education at the University of California, Los Angeles. His research focuses on several aspects of education in developing and emergency contexts including public health education, micro-finance and entrepreneurship education, and technology in education. He has a particular focus on the issue of gender equity. He also has a research interest in comparative religious education. Joseph received his BS from Brigham Young University, MSc from Oxford University, and has worked for USAID, UNESCO, and various NGOs in Africa and the Middle East. 

Yawen Yu

Screen Shot 2018-11-29 at 1.53.03 PM.png

Yawen Yu is a PhD student in the Graduate School of Education and Information Studies, University of California, Los Angeles, in the division of Human Development and Psychology. Her research interest is primarily in language development, more specifically, understanding the role of environmental factors in early language and bilingual language development. Prior to coming to UCLA, Yawen received a M.A. in Humanities Study from the University of Chicago, a B.A. in Philosophy from Zhejiang Gongshang University, China. 


Linli Zhou is a Ph.D. student at the Graduate School of Education and Information Studies, University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA). She earns her B.A. in Pedagogy from the Faculty of Education at the Beijing Normal University in Beijing, China. Her interests center on diversity and inclusion in institutes of international higher education. Specifically, she examines student development in university peer mentoring programs to foster organizational agendas and strategies for an inclusive and diverse campus for undergraduate and graduate students.

Christine Liboon


Christine Liboon is a Master's student in GSE&IS Social Research Methodology program. Her research interests are focused on program evaluation related to newcomer, immigrant and migrant populations.  Christine graduated from the University of California, Riverside with a B.A. in Ethnic Studies in 2009. She received her Certificate of English Language Teaching to Adults (CELTA) at International House Language School of Barcelona in 2012. She has worked for IRC, WestEd, and as an assistant evaluator for educational programs through TIDES. 

Bilgehan Ayik


Bilgehan Ayik is a Master’s student in Social Research Methodologies at UCLA. She has bachelor degrees in elementary mathematics education, business administration, and law education (in progress), and a Master’s degree in secondary mathematics education. Her schooling at UCLA is funded through a scholarship from the Ministry of National Education in Turkey. Her academic focus is on refugee education, especially in the Middle East and Turkey. In addition to having seven years experience as a teacher, she is currently the Executive Director of TASC-UCLA and a writer for Al-Talib Newsmagazine.


Edith Omwami


Edith Mukudi Omwami is Associate Professor in the Graduate School of Education and Information Studies at UCLA. Previously she served as Coordinator for the HIV/AIDS in Africa Initiative of the UCLA Globalization Research Center- Africa and was Coordinator for the UCLA/ USAID Collaborative Research Support Program Child Nutrition Project in Kenya. Her research focuses on educational access, participation and funding of education; nutrition and education linkages, education policy and practice; gender and education; and African education.

Jason dorio

Dorio_Photo copy.JPG

Jason Nunzio Dorio, Ph.D., is a Lecturer at the Graduate School of Education and Information Studies, University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) and is a former Visiting Scholar with the Graduate School of Education at the American University in Cairo, Egypt. His interests center on critical citizenship education within North Africa, Southwest Asia and Southern Europe. Additionally, he examines student activism as well as explores social and environmental justice education and transformative pedagogies of global citizenship education.

            Jason is an Honorary Founder of the Paulo Freire Institute-UCLA, served as the Assistant to the President of the World Council of Comparative Education Societies (2013-2016). He currently serves on the Advisory Committee for the UNESCO-UCLA Chair on Global Learning and Global Citizenship Education, is the Co-Chair of the Comparative and International Education Society (CIES) Middle East Special Interest Group, is a member of the Academic Network on Global Education & Learning (ANGEL), and is an International Peer Advisor for the Civic and Peace Education Initiative supported by the Salzburg Global Seminar at the American University in Cairo. Recent publications include a co-edited book (Dorio, Abdou, and Moheyeldine, 2019), The Struggle for Citizenship Education in Egypt: (Re)Imagining Subjects and Citizens, Routledge.