Conversations On Gender Equity, Diversity, Inclusion, and the Power of Service
Wednesday, March 22, 2023
Bennett College Global Learning Center Multipurpose Room
521 Gorrell St, Greensboro, NC 27406
Join Bennett College President Suzanne Walsh and Peace Corps Director Carol Spahn for a set of live, global conversations throughout the afternoon on gender equity, diversity and inclusion, and the power of service. Participants will join from around the country and around world to discuss the ways in which the thread of gender equity is woven throughout national and international service and development work. Speakers will share life journeys and describe career paths focused on gender equity which were launched and informed through their service in the Peace Corps.
Resister HERE to attend the event in-person or to participate virtually. (Capacity is limited to 200 in-person attendees)
IN-PERSON REGISTRATION DEADLINE IS MONDAY, March 20, 2023 AT 11:59 PM
11:15 AM – Small group discussions
Small group discussions with Returned Peace Corps Volunteers (RPCVs) and Peace Corps staff (Lunch provided. Registration Required.)
12:00 PM – Welcome and Discussion of Gender Role and Gender Equity
Join the leaders of Bennett College and the Peace Corps in a conversation around the shared commitment, by the two institutions, to preparing Bennett students and Peace Corps Volunteers to become global leaders and champions of gender equity. President Suzanne E. Walsh, JD, MSSA – Bennett College and Carol Spahn, Director, Peace Corps
President Suzanne E. Walsh, JD
Suzanne Elise Walsh became the nineteenth president of Bennett College on August 1, 2019. She was most recently deputy director of postsecondary success for the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, leading and developing a team and a portfolio of over $70 million in postsecondary investments in institutional transformation in the United States. She previously served in leadership roles with the Lumina Foundation for Education and The Heinz Endowments.
Ms. Walsh has received national recognition for her portfolio of work with organizations at the intersection of innovation, technology and learning. Ms. Walsh has been a frequent speaker and workshop leader at conferences and has published or edited several books and journal articles on the topic of educational transformation. She is the recipient of numerous awards, honors and fellowships.
Ms. Walsh earned a bachelor’s degree in social work from Cornell University, as well as a master’s degree in social work and a law degree from Case Western Reserve University. She is a member of the Ohio Bar.
Director Carol Spahn
Carol Spahn brings more than 25 years of public and private sector experience, and has worked in countries around the world on issues ranging from small business development to infectious disease prevention and women’s empowerment. Most recently, Carol served as the Peace Corps chief of operations in the Africa region covering Eastern and Southern Africa. Previously, she served a five-year term as the country director of Peace Corps/Malawi.
Carol’s Peace Corps roots extend back to her service as a Volunteer from 1994 to 1996 in Romania, where she served as a small business advisor. Before returning to the Peace Corps as country director, Carol was senior vice president of operations at Women for Women International, an organization serving marginalized and socially excluded women in conflict affected countries. Prior to that, Carol served as executive director of Accordia Global Health Foundation, a nonprofit focused on creating sustainable centers of excellence in health in Africa.
Carol holds a bachelor’s degree from the Catholic University of America and a master’s degree in international development from the George Washington University Elliott School of International Affairs.
1:15 PM – Returned Peace Corps Volunteers Thought Leader Panel
Returned Peace Corps Volunteers (RPCV) Thought Leader Panel, including student Q&A with panelists *
The Peace Corps Thought Leader Series brings together Returned Peace Corps Volunteers (RPCVs) who have become thought leaders and influencers in various fields throughout the United States and around the world. Join us as we explore, with our distinguished panelists, how their Peace Corps service informed and influenced their career choices and how the knowledge, skills, and abilities they gained through service have helped them make a positive impact in their fields and in their local communities.
Moderator: Yvonne Hubbard, Peace Corps
- Latanya Mapp-Frett, President and CEO, Global Fund for Women (RPCV Lesotho)
- Jaynice Del Rosario, Program Officer, Girls First Fund (RPCV Ethiopia)
- Besem Obenson, Representative, United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) Guatemala (RPCV Paraguay)
Representative in Guatemala of the office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR)
After graduating from the Ohio State University, Besem served as a Peace Corps Volunteer in rural Paraguay as a health specialist from 1991 to 1994.
Jaynice Del Rosario
Program Officer, Girls First Fund
Jaynice Del Rosario is a RPCV who served in the Southern Nations, Nationalities, and Peoples’ Region (SNNPR) region of Ethiopia from 2013 to 2015.
Latanya Mapp Frett
President and CEO, Global Fund for Women
Latanya Mapp Frett is an RPCV who served in Lesotho from 1994-1996. An attorney by training, she began her career at the NAACP Legal Defense and Education Fund in Washington, DC.
2:30 PM – Global Conversations with Peace Corps Country Directors
Join Peace Corps global leadership from four countries in a moderated and participatory session led by Bennett students on Peace Corps service and its transformative nature for both the Volunteer and local partners. In addition to country-specific information and the challenges and benefits of service, topics will also include program information on the following Peace Corps sectors: Education, Economic Development, Environment and Health.
Melissa Meno, Director of Programming and Training in Panama, Focusing on the Environment
- This breakout session with Melissa Meno, Director of Programming and Training in Panama, will focus on environmental work. Ms. Meno has had an international career of nearly 20 years focused on training and programming management. Her overseas assignments have included Bolivia, Mexico, and Panama, where she currently calls home. She has an entrepreneurial spirit and hold a Bachelor of Arts and Master of Business Administration degrees. Melissa loves living in Panama with her husband Jake, currently Grants Officer at the Embassy in Panama, 4-year-old daughter Rafaela, as well as their dog Melo.
Stephanie Joseph de Goes, Country Director, Peace Corps Tanzania focusing on Education
- Ms. de Goes has led a career dedicated to addressing the challenges of HIVAIDS, globally. She has brought leadership and inspiration to large and complex PEPFAR programs in countries which include Vietnam, Angola, Guyana and Rwanda. She has built and strengthened multicultural teams and focused on building local capacity and talent. Ms. de Goes has managed and led HIV/AIDS, orphans and vulnerable children, family planning/reproductive health, maternal child health, malaria, health systems strengthening, gender and youth livelihood programs. She completed her bachelor’s degree at the University of Maryland and her master’s at Johns Hopkins.
Nadine Rogers, Country Director, Peace Corps Guyana focusing on Health
- Dr. Rogers has nearly 30 years of experience in management, health policy implementation, science administration, and education and communication across the private, public, and non-profit sectors. Her career in public service has included time with the U.S. State Department, the National Institute on Drug Abuse and as PEPFAR Country Lead for the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Administration in Vietnam. Her overseas experience includes long and short-term assignments in Vietnam, Cambodia, Uganda, Ethiopia, South Africa, Zambia, and the Caribbean. She has lectured in health program planning and design at the Morgan State University, School of Community Health. She holds a Ph.D. in Health Policy and Management from the John Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health; a Master of Science in Communication from Clarion University of Pennsylvania; and a Bachelor of Arts in English Literature from the University of the West Indies, Cave Hill Campus, Barbados.
Carolyne Siganda, Country Director, Peace Corps Kosovo focusing on Economic Development
- Dr. Siganda’s career experience spans over 20 years in leadership and management positions in United States, Africa, Asia and Latin America in domestic and international development programs. Her international development work has included providing strategic leadership to regional teams in the management of emergency, disaster preparedness and mitigation programs in Africa, Asia and Latin America for United States Agency for International Development, Office of Foreign Disaster Assistance (USAID/OFDA). She holds a Doctor of Management from University of Maryland University College, Masters in Business Administration & Economic Development Policy from American University (DC).
3:30 PM – Networking Opportunity
Networking opportunity with program attendees.
Peace Corps Recruiters will be present to answer any questions about applying to the Peace Corps
* These program elements will also be live streamed via Zoom.