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SPA’s Leadership Program Announces Class of 2015

Washington Mentorship Program

The SPA Leadership Program is proud and delighted to announce the entering class of 2015. Selected from another year of record-breaking numbers of applicants, these 42 students come from urban, rural, and suburban communities from 19 different states. More than 40% are merit award winners.

Though they have widely divergent experiential backgrounds and political beliefs, each has demonstrated exemplary service to their schools and communities.

The Leadership Program Class of 2015:

  • Harry Adler, New City NY
  • Maria Virginia Bosio, Sparta NJ
  • Tyler Bowders, Waynesboro PA
  • Dylan Boyer-Weaknecht, Mertztown PA
  • Laura Bruns, Baltimore MD
  • Amanda Casoni, Elizabethtown KY
  • Angelo Curto, Clifton Park NY
  • Benjamin Derby, Auburn NY
  • James Duffy, Newark DE
  • Donald "Tripp" Frank, Redwood City CA
  • Joanna Heaney, Exeter RI
  • Cassandra Henry, Bronx NY
  • Emily Horowitz, Scotch Plains NJ
  • Jasmine Jones, Lynchburg VA
  • Kendall Karr, Saint Charles IL
  • Christian Knoch, Garden City NY
  • Emily Kvalheim, Westerville OH
  • Caroline Ladzinski, Columbia MD
  • Trevor Langan, Roanoke VA
  • Marc Lewis, West Haven CT
  • Lydia Manchester, Raymond ME
  • Herman Marigny, New Orleans LA
  • Samuel McBee, Center Moriches NY
  • Gabriel Menchaca, Bloomfield Hills MI
  • Ta Lynn Mitchell, Oakland CA
  • Madison Mullen, Chicago IL
  • Cassondra Murphy, Auburn NY
  • Jennifer Newman, Los Angeles CA
  • Sarah Pagliocco, Gillette NJ
  • Joshua Parrish, Nampa ID
  • Christine Porter, Tucson AZ
  • Ian Powell, Brookline NH
  • Elyse Preston, Towson MD
  • Kristen Pulkstenis, Lafayette NJ
  • Julia Reinstein, Wyckoff NJ
  • Lauren Reiser, Ellicott City MD
  • David Shadburn, Brooklyn NY
  • Tyrees Smith, Browns Mills NJ
  • David Stauffer, Carver MN
  • John "Jack" Szeltner, North Olmsted OH
  • Chandler Thornton, Frederick MD
  • Harry Weiss, New City NY

Following this competitive application process, these students will advance together through the four-year, 15-unit course of study that culminates in a Certificate in Advanced Leadership Studies from SPA. Topics covered include theories of leadership, famous leaders, social justice, ethics, negotiation, conflict resolution, public speaking, teamwork, and community-based learning.

To be selected for the Leadership Program students must demonstrate a strong commitment to leadership development, dedication to community service, superior academic achievement, and capacity to contribute to a diverse community.

The SPA Leadership Program, created in 1990 and directed by Assistant Professor Margaret Marr, offers students the experience, skills, and knowledge to prepare them for leadership roles in public service and in life. The Leadership Program provides a venue for leadership development through simulations, readings, discussions, seminars, team activities, hands-on social activism, and internships - training students to think creatively, act honestly, and make constructive community-oriented decisions.

We welcome with great enthusiasm the American University School of Public Affairs Leadership Program class of 2015.