Meet Our Team

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Director of Global Engagement

Amine Mechaal is a multi-faceted international education professional with a passion for bridging cultures and fostering international collaborations. As the Director of Global Engagement at Teachers College, Columbia University (TC), Amine is responsible for overseeing the College’s international initiatives and engagement with international partners (governments, donors, and organizations).


Prior to working at TC, Amine worked as Customized and Faculty-led Program Manager at IES Abroad. He developed and implemented over 120 programs in Europe, Asia, Africa, Australia, and South America for 65 U.S. universities and colleges in the northeast region. Amine also was an Assistant Director for Academics and Customized Programing at IES Abroad Rabat, where he oversaw the academic governance and operations of the center, led the center’s strategic planning, and supervised the implementation of faculty-led programs.


Amine served as Director and Managing Partner of House of Words Institute, an educational institute specialized in customized language programming for Moroccan and international adult students between 2014 and 2017.


Amine’s expertise in international education has been recognized through a Fulbright grant he received in 2017 to teach Arabic and study at the City University of New York. He also received several awards including the Teaching Excellence Award from the University of Minnesota’s CARLA Institute, Study Abroad Impact Award from IES Abroad Rabat, and the Social Enterprise Award from the World Bank and the United Kingdom’s Foreign and Commonwealth Office.


He holds a vocational bachelor’s degree in teaching from Mohammed V University in Rabat. At the graduate level, Amine studied International Relations and Andragogy at the City University of New York and Translation and Simultaneous Conference Interpreting at the King Fahd School of Translation in Tangier. As a professional interpreter, Amine was contracted by the United Nations offices in Morocco and New York, foreign embassies, the Moroccan Parliament, and other international governmental and non-governmental organizations. He is currently studying for another master’s degree in international education development at Teachers College.


Amine Mechaal’s areas of interest include study abroad, experiential learning, teaching, curriculum design, micro credentialing, international job market trends and accessibility, comparative and international education, internationalization of higher education, international governance organizations, international education CSOs, education policy, translation and conference interpreting, international affairs, and parallel diplomacy.

International Projects & Partnerships Manager

Jazmin Guardado is an International Education young professional passionate about cross cultural engagement and educational exchange. As the International Projects and Partnerships Manager at Teachers College, Columbia University, Jazmin is responsible for establishing and fostering strategic partnerships as well as managing current and new international projects in the Office of Global Engagement. 


Prior to joining TC, Jazmin worked as the Global Leadership and Internship Program Manager for Pepperdine University’s Washington DC Campus. In this capacity, Jazmin managed a robust undergraduate program focused on building professional and intercultural skills to cultivate future global leaders. In addition, Jazmin facilitated the partnership with international organizations to lead delegations abroad to provide learning opportunities for students on topics such as foreign policy, service leadership, and intercultural communication in countries including Spain, Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, and the Dominican Republic. Jazmin also worked as the Los Angeles Parent School Partnership Director for the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund (MALDEF) in order to promote educational equity across Los Angeles public schools and advocate for more substantial resources to underserved communities and schools in the Los Angeles area. 


Jazmin holds a Bachelor’s degree in International Studies from Pepperdine University. She received a Fulbright English Teaching Assistant grant to Brazil in 2019. Currently, Jazmin is pursuing her Master’s degree in International Education Development at Teachers College, Columbia University. 


Jazmin’s areas of interest include experiential learning, curriculum design, comparative and international education, human rights, peacebuilding, international governance organizations, education policy, international affairs, and diplomacy.

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International Program Coordinator

Lauren is the International Program Coordinator for the Office of Global Engagement. She received her B.A. in international studies from Kenyon College. Prior to Teachers College, she spent a combined total of three years living and working abroad—most recently, for the Spanish Ministry of Education. She is passionate about international education and the ways in which intercultural experiences can foster better global citizens.

Fulbright Program Coordinator

Victoria Alonso is a current Teachers College, Columbia University student pursuing a Ed.M. in Latino/a mental health counseling. At TC, she has previously held roles in diversity, equity, and inclusion and in career counseling. Before joining the TC community she attended Adelphi University where she received a B.A. in Psychology. She hopes to engage in research with Spanish-speaking populations in the future and has a lifelong passion for language acquisition.

Grant Researcher

Melissa is a global grant researcher at the Office of Global Engagement, currently in her second year of the Master’s program in Clinical Psychology at Teachers College, Columbia University. She has collaborated with New York-based nonprofits and served as an evaluator for asylum seekers, demonstrating her commitment to helping others. Melissa aspires to become a mental health advocate on a global scale, with a focus on establishing enduring support systems in low-to middle-income countries where mental health services are scarce. Through her work with the Advocacy Lab, she contributed to the passage of a mental health resolution at the United Nations.

Doctoral Research Fellow | Office of Academic Planning

Samaya Mansour is a Ph.D. candidate in International and Comparative Education at Teachers College, where she also serves as a Doctoral Research Fellow for the Office of Academic Planning. Prior to her current role, she was involved in multiple large scale education development projects, including policy and reform, teacher training and well-being, and youth development in the MENA region. Samaya holds a B.A. in Education and a post-graduate diploma in Educational Leadership from the American University of Beirut, as well as a MPhil in Educational Leadership and School Improvement from the University of Cambridge. Her current research interests center on the exploration of how refugees reclaim their agency and citizenship in the context of migration and forced displacement.

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