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Civic Semester Fellows Fall 2022

The 2022 Civic Semester Fellows are a diverse group of 8 students who will be spending the first semester of their Tufts education in Peru, exploring themes of environment and agriculture, arts and culture and community health. These young leaders come from around the world and all across the United States, but they are all united by their shared commitment to civic engagement and a more just and sustainable future. 

The 2022 Tufts Civic Semester Fellows are:


Fatima Eisa

Fatima was born in Saudia Arabia, is a native of Sudan, and grew up in Denver, Colorado, the mile high city. As a child, Fatima visited Sudan many times, sparking her interest in traveling the world. Her love of food, languages and meeting new people only drove her further in wanting to explore the rest of the world and she can’t wait to get to Peru for her first visit to South America! In her down time she plays on her Switch, does volunteer work and works with young English learners at Kumon. Fatima also enjoys design and has worked on the production of her school’s yearbook and served as president of her school’s speech and debate club, both of which helped her realize her desire to pursue a degree in International Relations. She hopes that the Civic Semester in Peru will expand not only her food palette, but also her perspective on the world.


Sahana Krishnakumar

Sahana is originally from Buffalo, New York, but lived abroad her whole life. While living in Shanghai and Frankfurt, she developed a passion for civic engagement and environmental sustainability, resulting in her supporting communities in the Kalahari Desert while promoting eco-friendly practices at school. Sahana strongly believes in a wholistic education and engaging with local communities, which drew her to Civic Semester. She is beyond excited to explore Peru, learn Spanish, and make connections within her cohort and the local community. She looks forward to diving into the Peruvian way of life to expand her cultural awareness and gain a deeper understanding of the history, traditions, and customs that shape life in Urubamaba.


Mathew Letua

Mathew is from Samburu, Kenya. He attended Murang'a High School where he was Captain for Wings to Fly Scholars, the Games and Sports Captain and Governor of a house in the school. As a KenSAP Scholar, he is looking forward to joining Tufts University majoring in Economics with a minor in Peace and Justice Studies. He previously worked as a Thrive Fellow and with KEY Trust Libraries, a charity program that donates libraries to sub-Saharan communities. Currently, Mathew works with Equity Global Scholars where he is coaching the top students from DRC Congo to get access to elite schools in the USA and other parts of the world for their undergraduate studies. He's also an upcoming clerk for the Kenya General elections in August, where he will be helping with voter turnout, language interpretation and counting of the votes as part of the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC).

Yazan Maaita

Growing up in the heat and humidity of the Middle East, Yazan is eager to start this new chapter of his life in the valleys of Urubamba. A Jordanian-Palestinian who lived most of his life in Jordan, Yazan has an intimate love for the outdoors, devotion to sports, and an eagerness to take action. A King’s Academy graduate, he served on the Student Leadership Council for 3 years, captained the varsity basketball team, and led the expansion of the school’s student-led newspaper The Rexonian. In Peru, Yazan looks forward to building on his past and paving the way for new passions and interests. From unraveling the mysteries of Peruvian food to fully immersing himself in the Spanish language to enjoying “friendly” games of football with fellow cohort members, Yazan is all in! With ties to the oppressed Palestinian community, Yazan hopes to utilize this experience to distill and dissest the roots of civic engagement to further his activism and continue his fight for the Palestinian cause as it forms a huge part of his identity. Through this transformative semester, Yazan will lay the foundation to his career in law, while also engaging in a unique abroad experience with like-minded individuals.


Jordan Quiles

Jordan is a Rhode Islander at heart. He attended a charter elementary school in the south side of Providence, one of the most diverse areas of the city, an experience that stuck with him as he felt out of place in a high school lacking this same diversity. As the club leader of the Students of Color Union, he used his role as a Lead Ambassador to promote the school to a more diverse student body. Outside of the classroom, he participated in protests for the Black Lives Matter movement, marching on the State House building to protest police brutality. In addition, Jordan pursued his childhood passion for science, where he particularly excelled in chemistry. He played violin for the school band, picking up the harmonica on the way, and continued playing baseball in high school. He even revived the school’s wrestling team! Volunteering with local organizations made Jordan realize he loves helping others just as much as he loves science, combining these passions into a desire to become a physician. During the Civic Semester, Jordan hopes to learn deeply about community health and another culture and to boaden his own perspective on a global scale. He also hopes to learn some more Spanish to improve his communication with family back home.

Pablo Tomberlin Profile Picture

Pablo Tomberlin

Pablo grew up near Washington, DC and enjoys folding origami, dancing, and playing guitar. Having been to Quito, Barcelona, Costa Rica, and having had a tutor from Guatemala, he hopes to continue to approach Spanish fluency while exploring the Andes and learning about Peruvian culture during Tufts Civic Semester. He also looks forward to opportunities to apply what he has learned from his magnet engineering program in high school. An athlete and a lifeguard, he wants a different experience that will help him learn about himself through delving into the challenges that face the environment and communities. Over recent summers, he has written a research overview on carbon offsets for the Carbon Lockdown Project and volunteered at a local organization aimed at improving food insecurity.


Charles Wang

Charles was born in Boston and grew up in New Haven, CT. In high school, he was an avid participant on the Model UN and varsity fencing teams and was involved in numerous volunteer organizations. At Tufts, he hopes to major in International Relations and continue a lifelong study of music. Some of Charles’ hobbies include playing piano, eating, and exploring the outdoors. Before the pandemic, Charles traveled extensively with his parents to dozens of countries across the world, including Peru. His first time in this spectacular place inspired him to return five years later to study, serve and savor the incredible culture and landscape of the Sacred Valley. Charles hopes to make the most out of his semester in Peru and looks forward to developing bonds with his newfound peers.


Cassie Yao

Cassie was born and raised in Shenzhen, China. The Civic Semester will be her first time in Latin America. As an aspiring anthropology student, she is thrilled to explore Peruvian culture and establish lifelong friendships with her cohort. With a passion for social justice, she also can’t wait to learn from people and organizations there by seeing how they are taking actions to make their community a better place. In her spare time, she enjoys music and traveling. She has participated in several musical performances and visited many places during high school, and she is so excited to spend her first semester in Peru - exploring a new place while listening to her favorite songs!