It takes a community to plan and support the Mandela Washington Fellows who have participated in the Leadership Institute at Bridgewater State University over the past three years. Toward that end, the university convenes a cross-divisional group comprised of faculty and administrators who, together, meet regularly to plan and implement all aspects of living and learning on campus and across the commonwealth for the Fellows.
The team develops a six-week schedule full of robust experiences for the Fellows from their academic, cultural and professional development to meeting members of the larger community on campus, in town and across the region, to planning fun experiences and exercises that are truly unique to New England.
Led by Dr. Wendy Haynes, Director of the Mandela Washington Fellowship Institute at BSU, members of the team include:
- Dr. Wing-kai To, Coordinator of Curriculum and Experiential Learning
- Dr. Michael Kryzanek, Academic Coordinator
- Jennifer Currie, Assistant Director, International Student and Scholar Services
- Kara Lees, Comptroller, CPA
- Jennifer Maus, Coordinator, Institutional Events
- Susan McCombe, Director, University and Community Partnerships
- Meghan Olbrys, Administrative Assistant, Office of the President
- Mary Waldron, Director, Institute for Policy Analysis and Regional Engagement
- Mia Zoino, Director, Grants and Sponsored Projects
Academic Team Leaders, under Academic Coordinator Dr. Michael Kryzanek, include:
- Jennifer Currie, Associate Director of International Student and Scholar Services
- Dr. Kevin Donnelly, Professor of Political Science
- Dr. Jibril Solomon, Assistant Professor in the School of Social Work
- Dr. Meghan Healy-Clancy, Assistant Professor of History and Coordinator of the African Studies Program
- Dr. Uma Shama, Professor of Mathematics and Computer Science and the Co-Director of the Geographics Laboratory
Please contact MandelaWashingtonFellows@bridgew.edu with any questions.
About the Mandela Washington Fellowship's BSU Team
Dr. Wing-kai To, Ph. D.
Dr. Wing-kai To, Ph.D., serves as the Institute Director. Dr. To is the Assistant Provost for Global Engagement and Senior International Officer at Bridgewater State University. He holds his BA and M.Phil from the Chinese University of Hong Kong and his Ph.D. from University of California at Davis. As a professor of history and Asian Studies, he is also the Vice-President of the Chinese Historical Society of New England. His scholarship focuses on China and the world, Asians in the United States, global migrations, diaspora and cultural change. As the leader of the Minnock Institute for Global Engagement, Dr. To currently oversees international initiatives, study abroad, global learning, international students and scholar services, English language learning, and international partnerships at Bridgewater State University. In addition to supporting the Mandela Washington Fellows Program over the last three years, he received a reciprocal exchange grant to Uganda and developed the Mandela alumni visiting program.
Contact Information for Dr. To: Minnock Institute for Global Engagement: firstname.lastname@example.org
Michael Kryzanek, Ph. D.
Michael Kryzanek, Ph.D., serves as the academic director for the Institute. Dr. Kryzanek received his degree from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, in 1975. He is currently the Special Assistant to the President of Bridgewater State University (BSU). Dr. Kryzanek’s areas of expertise are in American government, US foreign policy and comparative politics. For a number of years Dr. Kryzanek was Chair of the Political Science Department and was named as the Executive Director of the Minnock Center for International Engagement with responsibilities for all international programs at BSU. He retired from full time service in 2015 but remains as the Special Assistant to the President. As a member of the graduate faculty at Bridgewater and the first coordinator of the Master’s in Public Administration program, Dr. Kryzanek taught courses in leadership and executive decision-making. During his time as the Executive Director of the Minnock Center, Dr. Kryzanek traveled to over twenty countries to sign agreements with universities and governmental ministries that expanded BSU’s global reach and offered students and faculty international educational opportunities.
Contact information for Dr. Kryzanek: President’s Office: email@example.com
Wendy Haynes, Ph. D.
Wendy Haynes, PhD, is currently the Special Assistant to the Vice President for University Advancement. She will direct the leadership curriculum for the Institute, including the CliftonStrengths® assessment. Dr. Haynes earned an interdisciplinary doctoral degree in law, policy and society from Northeastern University in 2002. She brings to her work at BSU a rich career as a leader in public service at all levels of government. She is the former coordinator of the Master of Public Administration (MPA) program at BSU, where she spearheaded the successful effort to achieve national accreditation for the program – the only program at a public institution in Massachusetts to achieve this distinction. Dr. Haynes is a Fellow of the National Academic of Public Administration, a body charter by the U.S. Congress, and served as president of the national American Society for Public Administration, the premier association for practitioners and academics in the field. Prior to joining the BSU faculty, Dr. Haynes served as 1st Assistant Inspector General for Megaproject Oversight in the Massachusetts Office of the Inspector General.
Contact information for Dr. Haynes: University Advancement: firstname.lastname@example.org
Jennifer Currie earned a Bachelor’s of Arts degree in English and Communication from Simmons College in Boston and received her Master of Education in Student Affairs Counseling at Bridgewater State University. She has worked professionally in international education since 2004 where she began her journey working with inbound international students at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). She currently serves as the Associate Director of International Student and Scholar Services where she continues her work in expanding the leadership and advocacy of incoming international students.
Dr. Kevin Donnely
Dr. Kevin Donnelly is an Associate Professor Political Science and Chair of the Master of Public Administration Program. Dr. Donnelly received his Ph.D. from Northeastern University in Boston. He is also the 2015 recipient of the President’s Award for Distinguished Teaching. His research interests are in the areas of language in politics, and U.S. health and social policy. Dr. Donnelly co-authored a book titled “Foreign Remedies: What the Experience of Other Nations Can Tell Us about Next Steps in Reforming U.S. Health Care (with David Rochefort)”. He has also published in Polity, the Journal of Policy History, Harvard Health Policy Review, and Medicine and Health Rhode Island, and authored a number of book chapters.
Dr. Jibril Solomon
Dr. Solomon is an assistant professor in the School of Social Work. He earned his bachelor’s degree in human biology; a master’s in social work education and a Ph.D. in psychometrics assessment in learning. His areas of expertise include biopsychosocial, human behavior and brain, and body mind connections in the understanding of disorders. His current research projects focus on the use of social justice in social work practice and the effects of limited duration course required volunteering on social work students ’learning outcomes and preparation for the profession. His major research agenda is on the biological aspects of social workers’ understanding of disorder assessment, diagnosis and treatment.
Dr. Meghan Healy-Clancy
Dr. Healy- Clancy is Assistant Professor of History and Coordinator of the African Studies Program. Dr. Healy-Clancy is a social and cultural historian of southern Africa. She holds a Ph.D. in African Studies and an M.A. in History from Harvard University, and a B.A in History from the University of Chicago. She is the author of A World of Their Own: A History of South African Women’s Education and numerous articles. Her recent publications include “The Family Politics of the Federation of South African Women: A History of Public Motherhood in Women’s Antiracist Activism”, which won the 2017 Catherine Prize for Outstanding Feminist Scholarship.
Dr. Uma Shama
Dr. Shama is Professor of Mathematics and Computer Science and the Co-Director of the Geographics Laboratory at BSU. Dr. Shama received her Ph.D in Mathematics from the University of Connecticut. She has received numerous awards including the Lifetime Faculty Research Award, the Martha Jones Outstanding Dedication to Students Award, and the Presidential Award for Distinguished Teaching. She has been the principal investigator for numerous technology grants, especially in the area of transportation. A team leader in the Mandela program since 2015, Dr. Shama’s primary area of research is in applied mathematics.