PiA Fellow Facebook


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Forest Abbott-Lum

Beijing, China
Bennington College '15 
Majors in Chinese and Environmental Studies
Hometown: Kailua, Hawaii 
Forest is absolutely stoked to be doing environmental work where it feels most urgent, in smoggy Beijing. Still in persuit of the Chinese Dream, she will be looking to travel as far west as possible within Chinese borders when she isn't busy struggling over legal translations. Come crash on her couch ANYTIME. 


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Tim Aberle

Jakarta, Indonesia
Montclair State University '11
Major in English
Hometown: Oakland, New Jersey
Tim was born and raised in the small, but woodsy town of Oakland, New Jersey. Since 2012 he have lived and worked in Detroit, Michigan as a middle school math teacher (although his last year he was a dance, social studies, and science teacher as well), coached the soccer team, and helped build the school uo from scratch (almost literally). He's truly passionate about educating, being educated, being outdoors, fishing, rock climbing, freeze pops snd home made iced tea. Tim is greatly looking forward to a successful year in Indonesia: learning from the locals, understanding their culture, and sharing all he has to give with the community and his work with Smarty Ants. 
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Louis Albertini

Almaty, Kazakhstan
University of Michigan '13
Majors in Russian East European Studies and International Studies
Hometown: Grand Rapids, Michigan
Louis has been called "the homie" for the last five year. He hopes to continue on that success in Almaty, Kazakhstan. Having spent the past year or so in the contract furniture industry (space matters!) Louis is looking forward to reengaging with the Kazakh culture, the Russian language, and impromptu escapades to Medeu. 
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Alyssa Atain

Yangon, Myanmar
Princeton University '13
Major in Politics
Hometown: Hawthorne, California
In 2013, Alyssa was one of the fellows who jumped on a plane less than a week after graduation (andher family would say she hasn't slowed down since). For her first post, she traveled to Satree Secondary School in the beautiful, tranquil and welcoming town that is Phangnga, Thailand. As she writes this, she is 3/4 or the way through her second post in the hills of northern Laos PDR. She has loved wearing a Lao sinh and learning funny Lao phrases that make her sound like a local. Her older brother recently reminded her that before she started PiA, she only liked lettuce, tomato and mayo on her burgers, but her palette has definitely matured after repeatedly eating cricket, ant larvae, chicken eggs with little fetuses inside and other wild things in Lao PDR. If you're traveling to Myanmar, you can definitely sleep on her couchor floor in Yangon. She can't wait to hear about your amazing adventures across Asia!!!
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Meghan Duarte-Silva Barry

Bangsak, Thailand
Princeton University '15
Majors in Civil Engineering and Architecture
Hometown: Princeton, New Jersey

"I'm making short term goals, wonder where foes just put away the leathers and put ice on the gold chilly with enough bail money to free a big Willy high stakes, I got more at stake than Philly"

-Meghan Duarta-Silva Where-Did My Blurb Barry-Go (or Jay-Z??)

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Rachael Barton

Singapore, Singapore
Whitman College '15
Major in Biology
Hometown: Clackamas, Oregon
Rachael hails from a small suburb outside of Portland and can almost always be found with trace amounts of caffeine in her bloodstream. She is passionate about building pillow forts and petting every dog she encounters. As a PiA fellows, she is looking forward to teaching biology at Ngee Ann, and of course exploring new cultures (not the bacterial ones)!
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Phil Baumgart

Beijing, China
Columbia University '12 
Major in English 
Hometown: Denver, Colorado
One year in the Middle Kingdom with PiA just wasn't enough. For Round 2, Phil is relocating to the capital where he'll enthusiastically resume teaching and (perhaps slightly less enthusiastically) continue the woefully uphill battle that is learning Mandarin Chinese. Aside from gastrointestinal harmony, aspirations for the coming year include: 
1. A visit (finally!) to that one Chinese wall everyone's talking about
2. Eating all of the Beijing roast duck
3. Owning the most technologically advanced smog mask known to man
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Brian Bell

Phnom Penh, Cambodia
 Princeton University ‘15
Major in Computer Science
Hometown: Ponte Verde Beach, Florida
Just a boy in the world. 
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Cliff Bersani

Beijing, China

Princeton University '15

Major in Philosophy

Hometown: Hong Kong, S.A.R.

The prodigal son returns to Beijing to promote microfinance in rural China. Having spent a year in Beijing on a home stay program during high school, Cliff could not be more excited about returning to the city. Cliff is a fluent Chinese speaker and well-versed in Chinese culture thanks to the 16 years he spent living in Hong Kong. The most exciting thing about the post is the opportunity to travel all over rural China. Cliff is fei chang excited!

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Sonya Bhan

Vientiane, Laos
University of Pennsylvania '14
Majors in Political Science and South Asia Studies, minor in International Development
Hometown: New Delhi, India/Milford, Connecticut
Sonya is extremely excited to embark on a life of sinh during her year in Laos. Growing up in India, a tropical baby at heart, she is looking forward to the warm, balmy weather and lots of spicy food! She can't wait to learn more about the local culture & language in Laos and anticipates spending an obscene amount of her salary on traveling around the region {fellow PiAers, consider this a heads-up!}. Sonya loves to cook, and is also a budding photographer, an outdoor adventure sports junkie and a self-proclaimed foodie - she can't stress enough how happy she is to be heading to the land of exotic fruits. Moreover, she has an unhealthy and a dangerous obsession for dumplings and is so excited to be in dumpling heaven super soon! Sonya's couch will be open for business upon arrival in Vientiane and she is beyond thrilled to be a part of the PiA family and to have the opportunity to go on this amazing adveture of a lifetime. 
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