Achievement Academy of Durham

Allie Brown
Allie moved to Durham in August 2016 from Utah, after graduating from BYU with a degree in Sociology. She found the Achievement Academy of Durham and started volunteering there a few hours a week while trying out a few temporary jobs. When they told her about the chance to serve through AmeriCorps, she jumped at the chance to spend more time with the amazing students at AAD. She has been married to Zach, her high school sweetheart, for a little over a year and in their free time they like to play tennis, hike, try new recipes, and watch movies.

AVID of Chapel Hill-Carrboro City Schools

John Wright

My name is John Wright and I am from Wilmington, NC. I received a degree in Communication- Media from NC State University. After working for a time at a news station in Wilmington, I decided I wanted to affect and engage the world around me differently through nonprofit. I hope to be a strong advocate for education and a positive role –model for those in our community in my time serving with AmeriCorps.

Blue Ribbon Mentor-Advocate

Michelle Kim
Michelle Kim is originally from Iowa but has lived in North Carolina for the past two years. After graduating from Grinnell College in 2014 with a Bachelor of Arts in psychology, Michelle moved to North Carolina to work as a research technician at UNC Chapel Hill. She is excited to serve students in the community through NCLC and Blue Ribbon Mentor-Advocate and to develop skills to best enable students to reach their full potential. In the future, Michelle is interested in working in the fields of health behavior and mental health care and tackling issues such as disparities and stigma surrounding mental health care.

Monroe Square
Mandy Monroe
Mandy Monroe joined North Carolina Literacy Corps in 2015 to serve with Communities in Schools of Orange County at McDougle Middle School and is excited to serve a second year – this time with Blue Ribbon Mentor-Advocate! She came to NCLC after receiving an MA in Latin American Studies from the University of Florida. While studying she worked as an outreach assistant for the Center for Latin American Studies helping coordinate professional development opportunities for K-12 educators.  Her thesis research sought to understand how children in an indigenous community in Oaxaca, Mexico learn about plants and animals in an emerging bicultural education system.  She holds a BA in Biology and Environmental Studies from Warren Wilson College and spent three years volunteering as an environmental educator for AmeriCorps in northern California and Peace Corps in coastal Ecuador. Born by the sea and raised in the Finger Lakes region of Upstate New York, Mandy feels most at home in outdoor settings and enjoys sharing her curiosity and playfulness about our natural surroundings with kids of all ages.

Nicola Zollinger
Nicola Zollinger
Nicola Zollinger is a native of Ohio, and recently earned her B.A. in Psychology from Lafayette College. Her passion to serve others along with her belief in the welfare of each and every individual motivated her to join NC LiteracyCorps. Nicola hopes to utilize her experience working with multicultural learners to promote academic achievement and encourage empowerment amongst Blue Ribbon Mentor-Advocate students.

Boys and Girls Club (Wake County)

Shagufta Hakeem
Originally from Queens, New York–I relocated to the RTP area more than 10 years ago.  I graduated with undergraduate degrees in International Business and Criminal Justice from UNC-Charlotte and successfully completed my Masters Degree in Liberal Studies at Duke University.  I am excited to begin my journey as an educator and give back to my community with NCLiteracyCorps!

 Communities in Schools of Durham County

Stephanie Liss

Stephanie Liss grew up in northwest Georgia and graduated from Rice University in 2011 with a bachelor’s degree in Psychology and Linguistics. After graduation she spent 3 months volunteering at the University of Houston’s Cognitive Development Lab where she enjoyed helping design experiments and working with children. She has spent the last five years living in Spain where she learned Spanish and taught EFL to students of all ages.

During her service year with Communities in Schools of Durham, she hopes to explore her interests in the educational sector, grow professionally, and give back to the local community. In her free time, Stephanie enjoys hiking with her dog Nacho, trying new foods, dreaming up future travel plans, and reading.

John Wolf
 John Wolf is a North Carolina native who remains neutral when it comes to Duke Vs UNC. He graduated just this year from Lees-McRae College with a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration. He joined NC Literacy Corp as a way to give back to his community, and to explore the career possibilities in nonprofit management.

Aya Zouhri
Aya Zouhri
Aya Zouhri was born and raised in Durham, North Carolina. She majored in Global Studies at the University of North Carolina (go heels!), graduating in May of 2015. After pursuing an Americorps teaching program in NYC for the 2015-2016 year, Aya moved back to the triangle area with the hopes of impacting and learning from the communities closer to home. She is currently serving with Communities in Schools of Durham at Eno Valley Elementary School, and is beyond excited for all the growth and fun in store for the upcoming year!

Duke Program in Education

John-Patrick Grillet
Jean-Patrick Grillet is from Charlotte, NC, where he attended the public Language Academy and became engaged in community service at a young age. After receiving a dual degree in French and English Literature from UNC Asheville, Jean-Patrick worked as an assistant English Teacher in Lyon, France.  Now, upon his return to North Carolina, he is eager to pursue a career in service through education and community uplift. Jean-Patrick practices yoga, is a coffee geek and supports the Arsenal.

Durham Literacy Center

Nick Patten
Nick graduated from Iowa State University in 2011 with a degree in Sociology/International Studies. Since graduation, he has worked in the nonprofit setting – serving an AmeriCorps term in a legal aid office and working public relations for a technology nonprofit. He will be serving his second year as the Computer literacy tutor at the Durham Literacy Center. In his free time, he enjoys movies, PC gaming, and drawing.

Jake Price
Jake graduated from UNC Chapel Hill with an English degree in May 2016. As a college student, he volunteered as an ESL tutor at Culbreth Middle School. More than writing about himself in third person, Jake enjoys reading, trail walking, and composing poetry.

Durham Literacy Center- Youth Education Program

Andrew Deibert
Andrew graduated from High Point University in 2016 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Sociology and Anthropology. He has lived in Florida for most of his life, but has recently moved to Durham, North Carolina to serve at the Durham Literacy Center. He chose to serve because he is passionate about promoting educational equity and wants to learn more about complex social issues associated with education. He is interested in the career fields of teaching, social work, and social policy. He loves reading, traveling, eating, and playing sports.

Fairview Family Resource Center

Evelyn Dixon
Evelyn earned a BA in Education from Belmont Abbey College in 2011, she was a nontraditional adult student. She is a native of High Point North Carolina where she currently lives and serves as the primary caregiver for her 87 year old Father. Evelyn previously worked for 10 years in the Charlotte Mecklenburg Schools system, District Office before venturing off to explore new horizons! Evelyn is currently working as a Project Coordinator at North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University as well as completing a halftime assignment through Americorps. She plans to pursue a Master’s degree In Social Work and is excited about branching off into a new career through the vehicle of Americorps. The site where she is serving is called the Fairview Family Resource Center. She is excited about the experience she will gain and it is a great place to learn about the field of Human Services.

Helps Education Fund

Mia Avendano Galdamez
Hey my name is Mia Avendano, I was born in El Salvador but grew up in Carrboro, NC. I moved to Raleigh to continue my education at North Carolina State University. During my junior and senior year of college I volunteered for Helps Education Fund, Inc at a local elementary school and Homework Haven, an after- school program. During those two years my interest in non-profits became bigger and knew I wanted to continue doing the same kind of work in my post grad years. Luckily the non-profit I worked with was looking for a coordinator the year I graduated. Now I am serving Helps Education Fund as their full time Metropolitan Organization of Volunteers for Empowering Student (MOVES) Coordinator.

Literacy Connections of Wayne County

Michael Allen
Michael Allen lives in Goldsboro, NC. He holds Master degrees in both Social Work and Library Science.  Michael received his Bachelor of Arts in Anthropology and History from the University of Hawaii. Michael has worked in video production as well as the mental health/substance abuse recovery field. He hopes to continue working in the nonprofit sector and learning new methods to better help others.  Michael is motivated to serve at Literacy Connections of Wayne County due to his passion to see more people utilize literacy as a means to be further engaged in the democratic process.

Tiffany Evans
Tiffany Evans is originally from Goldsboro, NC.  She graduated from Park University with a Bachelor of Arts in Business Administration. Tiffany is excited about sharing her passion for learning with the adult population in her city. After her service is complete, she plans to continue her education to become a Naturopathic Doctor. Her hobbies include: reading, camping, learning about nature, and making crafts.


Literacy Council of Buncombe County

Niki Paganelli
Niki Paganelli is originally from the Tampa, FL area, but has long accepted North Carolina as home. She earned her Bachelor’s in Political Science, with a concentration in Public Policy, at North Carolina State University and completed her Master’s in Higher Education Administration at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. As a long time advocate for public education, Niki joins NCLC to deepen her own understanding of the inequities faced by learners from all backgrounds.

North Carolina Central University

Jessica Bullock
Jessica was born in Wilson, NC and is currently majoring in Dance Education at North Carolina Central University. She first attended East Carolina University where she received her Bachelor’s Degree in Elementary Education and then her Master’s Degree in Reading Education. She recently taught for 4 years in Wilson County Schools before relocating to the Durham area.  She is looking forward to serving with AmeriCorps to learn more ways to give back to her new community.

Kenadra Rice
Coming soon!

Bria Yates
Bria Yates is a Raleigh, NC native and senior undergraduate student at North Carolina Central University. She is an aspiring Neurosurgeon who is completing her bachelor’s degree in Biology. Although, her passion is to becoming part of the medical field, she does have experience working with Kindergarteners as a Teacher’s assistant and as a Mathematics Coach for grades 6-8. Bria is an active learner and has a hands on, engaging approach when it comes to tutoring. She plans to implement these skills in the AmeriCorps Program.

N.C. State Women’s Center

Madison Poupard
Madison is a junior majoring in Social Work and minoring in Women’s and Gender Studies. She is serving at the NC State Women’s Center as a program coordinator for Read to LEAD. Working with and educating children has become one of Madison’s passions as she’s progressed through college, and she hopes to make an impact on her community by serving as a member of NCLC. She really enjoys baking for the kids that participate in the Read to LEAD program.

Olivia Sandin
Being a military brat, Olivia Sandin considers herself from everywhere.  She was born in Maryland, then lived in Germany, New Jersey, and Maine, and her parents currently live in Leland, North Carolina.  She is a junior at N.C. State University, where she is majoring in Social Work and Women and Gender Studies with a minor in Spanish.  After graduation, Olivia wants to receive her MSW from N.C. State University and use it to open a coed home for survivors of domestic violence and sexual abuse. She is extremely passionate about social justice and gender equity, and hopes to inspire youth to do anything they want and to challenge themselves to grow and learn something new everyday.

Destinie Statum

Orange Literacy

Tyler Gilmore
Tyler Gilmore is a native of Winston-Salem, NC, but has lived in Chapel Hill/Carrboro for several years. He graduated from UNC in 2011 with a BA in English and Philosophy. Beginning as an undergraduate and continuing until he received his MLS in 2014, he worked with rare books and manuscripts in UNC’s Wilson Library. In this capacity, he worked frequently with genealogists and amateur historians and developed a fondness for continued, untraditional learning. He began volunteering at Orange Literacy as an Adult Basic Education tutor in 2015 to put this new appreciation to use, and he is now expanding on that work through AmeriCorps and the NC LiteracyCorps. He devotes his free time to rock-climbing indoors and outdoors, playing chess, and watching as much NBA as possible.

Zach Rubin
Raised in Chapel Hill, Zack graduated the University of North Carolina with a Bachelor of Science in biology and a minor in chemistry. Before joining Orange Literacy, he brought the joys of science to elementary students of diverse backgrounds through a program called UNC ScienceDays and spent a year with the AmeriCorps VISTA program in Research Triangle Park. He enjoys runs with his dog Zoë and trivia. He plans to go to dental school upon completion of his service year.

Reading Connections

Yolanda Hernandez

Yolanda Hernandez

Yolanda R. Hernandez is originally from Queretaro, Mexico. But grow up in the small town of Gaffney South Carolina. She will be obtaining her BA in business administration in December 2016, from South University. Yolanda will be the first in her family to graduate from college and persuing her MA in business administration with a focus on accounting. Through South University, Yolanda obtained an internship to work with Reading Connections, she has been there for about 2 and a half years. Now that she will be graduating in December, She is very excited to keep on serving Reading Connections through AmeriCorps.

Hill Square
Erik Hill
Erik came aboard Reading Connections as a volunteer tutor two years ago, and loved it so much that he jumped at the chance to become this year’s full-time NC LiteracyCorps member at the site. In addition to continued tutoring, his responsibilities include program coordinator support, student orientations, and student assessments. Erik will also be given the opportunity to instruct new arrival refugees in job-related language proficiency as part of an initiative that involves the site’s community partners and local employers. In a former life, Erik was a California native who lived and traveled around the world, studied Philosophy at the University of Chicago, and worked for more than a decade as a trader in the equity markets.

Taylor King
Taylor King
Taylor was born in Tallahassee, Florida and recently moved to North Carolina to study Speech-Language Pathology at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. Taylor is proud to be a first generation college graduate. She received a Bachelor’s degree in Linguistics from the University of Florida in 2014.  During her studies, Taylor worked with  international students by leading conversational English classes at Tsinghua University in Beijing, China and the University of Florida English Language Institute in Gainesville, Florida. After receiving her degree, she began a year of service as an AmeriCorps VISTA member, serving as a Volunteer Coordinator at Big Brothers Big Sisters in Tallahassee, Florida. Following her service year she joined the agency as a Program Coordinator, overseeing a mentoring program that serves elementary and middle school students at Title 1 schools in Tallahassee.

UNC America Reads

Erica Deshields
Erica is a current Junior at the University of North Carolina. She majors is Communication Studies with a minor in Business. She really enjoys the tutoring and helping others.

Erica Ellliott
Erica is from Gastonia, North Carolina and currently attends the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She is a Political Science and Peace, War, and Defense double major with an computer science minor. She is excited to serve with NC LiteracyCorps because she wants to help students gain new insights into the world of literacy and to help them become more interested in reading, writing, and comprehension skills.

Emily Greenwood
Emily is an undergraduate student at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She has a strong passion for social justice, especially educational equity. Emily is planning on majoring in Quantitative Biology with hopes of joining the Peace Corps after graduation

Brianna Moody
Brianna Moody is a current Senior Undergraduate Student at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She is a Biology and Psychology double major with a minor in Medical Anthropology. Brianna is incredibly passionate about decreasing health and educational disparities among marginalized populations and plans to use her experiences gained in AmeriCorps to assist her in her future career. She hopes to serve in the Peace Corps after she graduates and then earn her Master’s in Public Health.

Atif Rafique
Atif Rafique is a current Senior Undergraduate Student at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He is majoring in Public Policy. He was born in Pakistan and moved to the United States in 2010. He wants to have a career in public service and focus in fields related to social justice in education and health policy.

Crystal Yuille
Crystal Yuille
Crystal Yuille is a current Senior Undergraduate Student at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill by way of Frederick, Maryland. With an intended double major in Global Studies and Public Policy and a minor in Hispanic Studies her academic passions and career goals focus on advocacy for marginalized people whether through direct service, community organizing, or legislation.