Meet the Team

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The SOMOS team is made up of a diverse group of people with all kinds of interest. Scroll down to learn more about the SOMOS team.


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Professor Carrie Dolan

Professor Dolan’s research examines the allocation of health aid within the context of effectiveness, efficiency, and equity. Through combining household panels with geographically-referenced data, Carrie’s research determines the contribution of health aid on key health outcomes. She earned a MPH in Epidemiology from Tulane University and a PhD in Healthcare Policy and Research from the Virginia Commonwealth University School of Medicine. She currently teaches Fundamentals in Epidemiology, Health Policy and Health & Development.

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Aaron, class of 2019, is a Sociology major.

“The group’s emphasis on grassroots engagement and capacity-building has fundamentally pushed me to rethink my understanding of international development. As I look to what comes after graduation, I’m incredibly thankful for this remarkable team and appreciate the fresh perspective it has given me on community engagement.”

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Kiara Williams

Kiara, class of 2019, is majoring in Psychology.

“SOMOS is different from other organizations that focus on global development because we strive to create sustainable change by increasing community engagement and basing our work on the community’s self-identified needs, not what we believe the community needs. Learning about the theory that we base our work on has changed the way I perceive global development, and SOMOS has given me the opportunity to apply my knowledge with hands-on experience in the Dominican Republic. I have learned so much being a part of this team and have made some great friends along the way!”

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Aaron Cole

Aaron, Class of 2019, is a chemistry major and applied math minor.

“SOMOS’s focus on communities, leadership, and social structures as ways of approaching public issues has opened my eyes to a whole new way of looking at the world. I love working with this team and can’t wait to learn more from them and the people we work with in the Dominican Republic!”

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Gustavo Marsillac

Gustavo, Class of 2020, is a Computer Science major and Marketing minor. He loves learning about language, culture, and working in SOMOS’ collaborative environment.

“SOMOS approaches international development in a unique and multidisciplinary way that makes the project both difficult and fulfilling. The SOMOS team is never afraid to challenge and criticize its own actions, and never assumes good intentions are enough. The field work we do in the community of Esferuzo de Paraiso is extremely humbling and the people are genuine and caring. I would never have thought I would get so much out of SOMOS.”

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Yessica Bonilla

Yessica, class of 2020, is a Biology major.

“SOMOS invites me to think differently about social change through a deeper and meaningful collaborative engagement. Critical self-reflection in order to achieve sustainability and promote capacity building is a unique core component of our team. I encourage anyone who wants to challenge their perspectives on international development and health promotion to join the team.”

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Yosselin Turcios

Yosselin, class of 2020, is a Kinesiology and Health Sciences Major concentrating in Public Health and minoring in Psychology.

“I had heard great things about SOMOS and the meaningful and complex work it does with Esfuerzo. I’m excited to be a part of an organization that partners with communities to address shared health concerns, and works to create sustainable public health solutions. I know that I will learn a lot from the SOMOS seminar, team members, and from the community.”

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Dena Bashri

Dena Bashri, Class of 2020, is double-majoring in Mathematics and Kinesiology with a concentration in Public Health, with a minor in Arabic Language and Literature.

“SOMOS is the ultimate holistic experience. It provides both personal growth as an individual in terms of leadership and working with others in a predominantly student-run group and growth in our knowledge of theories and concepts, like international development. I am looking forward to the progress that SOMOS makes as an organization, both in the Dominican Republic and at The College”.

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Jack Shangraw

Jack, Class of 2020, is majoring in International Relations and planning on a minor in Data Science.

I’m excited to be getting started working with this great team of people. SOMOS is a unique project with a long history and I’m looking forward to contributing towards strengthening our partnership with the community of Esfuerzo and learning more about the theory and practice of community-based development.

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Amy Hilla

Amy Hilla, class of 2021, is majoring in Economics and minoring in Data Science.

“Being in SOMOS is such an amazing part of my college experience. SOMOS does important research and gives undergraduate students a chance to have a positive impact on the world, but just as importantly, SOMOS is full of fantastic people that I’m so glad to have in my life!”

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Matthew Crittenden

Matt Crittenden, class of 2021, is an International Relations Major and Data Science Minor

“SOMOS’ unique blend of applied research and community-based participatory development has provided me countless opportunities to expand my intellectual boundaries. Whether I’m doing field research in Esfuerzo, discussing complex theoretical concepts in class and lab, or describing SOMOS’ work to other people, I am constantly challenged to build and fine-tune my critical thinking and communication skills. SOMOS truly is a rare opportunity for undergraduates to engage in international development in a sustainable way through partnership.”

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Nakul Dar

Nakul Dar, class of 2021, is majoring in Biology.

“Teamwork makes the dream work. Being a part of the SOMOS team has taught me so much about global health and community development. I am always learning from the diverse group of people on the team, and I feel blessed to work on such a unique project.”

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Ashley Hernandez

Ashley Hernandez, class of 2021, is majoring in Government and Economics.

“Development projects have historically been very hierarchical and, to a degree, self-righteous. SOMOS is a rare instance of a project that lacks just those qualities, bent on its doctrine of reciprocity, self-reflection and critique. The lessons I’ve learned by being on this team so far go much beyond the specific domain of international development and into my everyday life. I believe that such an experience, based in learning from history and aimed toward sustainability, is essential to anyone looking to become a more responsible citizen of the world.””

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