Conducting Programs with our Communities

Gabrielle Swindle, Educational Outreach Specialist, SR 


Gabrielle Swindle is a “Lonestar Cajun" having spent her adolescent years moving back and forth between Texas and Louisiana. A proud Louisiana State University graduate, Gabrielle earned a BA in English, Secondary Education. While at LSU, Gabrielle acted as a researcher and co-teacher in the development of Humanities Amped (HA), an innovative program built around critical participatory action research and culturally sustaining pedagogies at McKinley Senior High School. After college, Gabrielle served for 27 months as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Guyana, South America. While serving as a Community Education Specialist, she developed a school library, assisted with Girls Leading Our World youth camps and clubs, and worked alongside the regional Department of Education in rural outreach initiatives.

Gabrielle’s passion for community engagement, education reform, and gender equity led her to CGEST. She is excited to work in spaces that actively strive to dismantle systemic inequity and to collaborate with inspirational leaders in the field.

Elaine Arrieta, Education Outreach Specialist

Elaine Arrieta is an Arizona native. She attended ASU where she earned her BA in psychology. She started her career  in behavioral health working at a residential treatment center for women and girls. It was there that she discovered her passion for education while helping adolescents with their studies. She returned to ASU for her post baccalaureate studies in secondary education. Elaine enjoyed the roles of classroom math teacher, administrator, and academic coach/mentor for 18 years. Her experience was predominantly in areas of poverty and she saw the barriers facing her students. Wanting to do more to affect change on a larger scale, Elaine moved out of the classroom and on to collective impact at Thriving Together, a systems change initiative through Valley of the Sun United Way. She managed educational impact programs by collaborating with schools and community organizations to enhance equity and educational outcomes for students in the Phoenix area. Because of her dedication to underrepresented populations and the opportunity to support culturally responsive programs in STEM, she found the educational outreach position a natural fit for her skills set. Elaine is excited to be a part of the CGEST team!

 Julianne Culey, AmeriCorps Member

 Originally from Michigan, Julianne moved to Phoenix after completing her four-year degree to get out of the cold and enjoy the hot desert weather. While in Arizona she was able to spend time researching, learning, and exploring the world around her, eventually completing her MA in Sociology at Arizona State University. She credits her drive and determination to her mother who always insisted she could do anything her brother could. During her studies, Julianne focused on the ways that technology has developed gender, class and racial biases due to the lack of inclusivity in the developmental process. Without proper representation in the creation of new technologies the end product is unlikely to be inclusive as well. Julianne's passion for women's rights, inclusion, and representation led her to seek out a position at CGEST, an organization that is committed to gender equity, in order to make an impact on the community she has grown to be a part of. Julianne considers Arizona to be her home and wants to do her part in creating a more inclusive environment for other girls and women in the state that encourages them to shape the technologies of their future.


Sana Ghazi, AmeriCorps Member

Sana holds an MS degree in International Education Development from the University of Pennsylvania and a BS degree in Economics from Lahore University of Management Sciences, Pakistan. Sana worked as a Fellow for Teach for Pakistan, a partner organization for Teach for All. She worked in under-resourced schools where she helped students in gaining academic, social and emotional success. She initiated a project on community empowerment through household development where she held workshops to train the locals on life skills and nutrition. This fellowship had a profound impact on her, and her future goals and aspirations which led her to focus her graduate studies in educational entrepreneurship, curriculum design, teacher training and education for the marginalized population. She worked on diverse group projects where she created a technical proposal for the All Children Reading Grant: iRead – a digital application to support Quechua literacy in Peru, developed a business plan for a social impact start-up to empower female domestic help in Pakistan and evaluated its feasibility and worked on a student consulting project for a local nonprofit organization in Philadelphia. Sana was selected to present the findings of her research on the analysis of ICT in teaching and learning in the formal education system in Pakistan at the CIES conference. She went on to complete an internship at UNESCO - International Bureau of Education in Geneva, Switzerland where she gained hands-on experience in writing proposals and designing curriculum to improve learning outcomes. Sana’s passion for community engagement and education in marginalized groups naturally drew her to a position at CGEST. She is excited to be a part of the CGEST team.