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Samson, a Yiya co founder and 2019 Obama Africa Leader is a physics teacher with a Bachelor of Science in  education from Makerere University and a veteran of Uganda's education system. He grew up in a rural area with limited resources. Yiya's mission has been shaped by his childhood experiences. He has a genius talent for educational design and a deep passion to leverage the power of experiential learning to end cycles of poverty endemic in Uganda. Samson's passion drives him to create learning experiences full of educational games that demonstrate difficult topics in a student-friendly way. 

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Erin, a Yiya cofounder, holds a Bachelor of Science from MIT as well as a Masters of Education from Marquette University. Her educational career began as a teacher for America fellow teaching high school math in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. She has over a decade of experience in secondary STEM education, teacher training, and curriculum development, and has worked with educators in the United States, Ethiopia, Uganda, and Sudan. Erin is interested in science and technology knowledge and ideas, as well as assisting young people in developing critical thinking and problem-solving skills.

Yiya’s  Program Coordinator, Edrine, graduated from Ghana's Ashesi University with a degree in Management Information Systems. He is a forward-thinking leader who has worked on a number of projects aimed at reducing poverty, teen pregnancy, and promoting child literacy in high-risk areas. Edrine appreciates working with people from many cultures and backgrounds, with the objective of making a positive impact on the planet. Edrine is a versatile visionary leader who has made a significant contribution to Yiya’s programs, including identifying impact.

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Sheeba, Yiya’s Innovations Coordinator, holds a Computer Engineering degree from Mbarara University of Science and Technology and is a young innovator and community activist. She is passionate about empowering people through technology. She has worked as a Robotics Tech Educator and a Tutor for Embedded Systems as part of the Technovation program. She has taken part in numerous science and technology programs, giving her a broad knowledge of the technology field. At Yiya she has expanded into curriculum design and has supported the design of the Yiya AirScience platform.

Angela joined Yiya as Chief of Staff in 2021. She has a Master’s Degree from University of Cape Town in Applied Anthropology, and experience in program development and assessment, direct service, and entrepreneurship. She has worked and studied in the U.S., Uganda, Rwanda, South Africa, South Korea and Thailand. She is passionate about wellness, personal agency, accessibility, and interdependence. She has maintained for 2 decades that good intentions do not necessarily create positive impact, and that we need to constantly be listening and learning in order to achieve the impact we intend.

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Tech Development Team

Joseph, has a 10 years experience leveraging IOT to address development challenges. He is the co-founder of ThinVoid, and a mentor, teacher, and Tech enthusiast. He advised on and spearheaded the development of the first Yiya Airscience platform. Joseph is an outstanding analytical leader who uses his extensive knowledge of software development to support team members. He is a valuable thought partner in the ongoing development of the YIya AirScience platform, as well as Yiya’s Vision. 

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Sharifah is a certified product analyst passionate about supporting projects and teams working on software and data-driven solutions. She enjoys assisting young people in reaching their technological potential. She holds a Bachelor's Degree in Computer Engineering from Busitema University, in Uganda and has worked on a wide range of software and data-driven solutions. She is enthusiastic to learn about machine learning and artificial intelligence.

Michael, Yiya’s software Developer, graduated from Makerere University with a Bachelor's degree in Software Engineering. With over 4 years experience in the software development craft, he has creatively contributed to the continuous development and improvement of the Yiya AirScience Platform. He is an immensely skilled Engineer who takes pride in effective teamwork through resilient problem-solving.

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Alan has spent 15 years as an entrepreneur, software engineer, and product manager, and holds a physics degree from MIT. He founded 4 companies and worked at the MIT Media Lab, as well as research and AI tech startups. Currently he works at Google. He developed the second version of the Yiya Airscience platform. Alan is a selfless team player who makes people appreciate the beauty of software solutions by portraying them in the easiest way possible.

User Support Team

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Felisty  is a professional teacher of Arts and Design with Diploma in Secondary Education from Gulu Teachers Training College. Her passion for teaching students how to use their talents to improve their lives sparked her interest in teaching students how to use STEM to solve community problems. She was one of the pioneer Yiya AirScience educators, and now works as a Field Officer for Yiya. Her great love for STEM and poetry was exhibited in a poem she composed about Yiya Airscience. 

Daniel is a consultant for Yiya and employed as an IT Technician at Oysters and Pearls Uganda. He is in charge of hardware and software troubleshooting, inventory management, installation and configuration of peripheral devices such as CCTV cameras. He enjoys learning and teaching robotics. He has been a valuable partner for Yiya in supporting user and teacher engagement, and supporting experimentation for the technologies Yiya teaches. 

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Harriet is a highly qualified teacher who holds a Bachelor's degree in teaching with a major in Geography from Makerere University. She has 8 years of teaching experience and has taught at Trinity College and Nile Progressive Secondary School, both in Gulu City. She has a great passion for science and technology. She is a passionate Yiya Airscience educator, excited about science and technology, who encourages more girls to venture into STEM courses.

Moses is a teacher of physics and mathematics at St Katherine S.S in Lira, Uganda. He was awarded by FAWE-Uganda as a teacher implementing their STEM . He is also one of the pioneer Yiya Airscience Educators. He was nominated by students and the administration of St.Katherine S.S for being the best science teacher in school. Moses is committed to continuous professional development.

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Fosca is a teacher of Biology at Dara Chrisitan high school in Lira, Uganda. She is one of the pioneer Yiya Airscience educators and she is so passionate about more females engaging in STEM. Fosca understands student sensitivities and differences, brings science lessons to life with real-world applications. She also enjoys assisting other science educators in learning new techniques for teaching students.

Ivan is a professional teacher of Arts and Design with a Diploma in Secondary Education from Kyambogo University. He is also a professional Visual Artist,  and is training a group of youth on environmental waste management. Passionate about STEM, poetry, and creativity for quick problem solving, Ivan's perspectives and drawing framing influenced him to bring his expertise to the Yiya Airscience program.

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Our Board Members

CAROLINE LOWENTHAL,
M.S, BOARD CHAIRPERSON

Caroline is the Alliance Manager in the MIT Office of Strategic Alliances and Technology Transfer. As Yiya Solutions board chairperson, she brings a wealth of experience in strategic planning and partnership building. 

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MERCY KATAIKE VICTORIA, M.S. PHYSICS

Mercy is starting her Doctorate studies in Medical Physics this year at the University of Melbourne in Australia, where she will be researching ischemic stroke. She aspires to become a certified professional medical physicist. 

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JOSEPH KAIZZI KASOLO

Joseph is the founder of ThinVoid, a software company in Uganda that is leveraging technology to empower SMEs in the transportation and agricultural Sectors. He is a mentor, a teacher and a tech-enthusiast.

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ANGELA FORCIER, M.A., SECRETARY,
YIYA-US

Angela career spans program development, direct service, research, program evaluation, 

and education, resulting in successful leadership, outcomes, and networking across lingual, socioeconomic, and cultural diversity. 

MIRIAM R. KABAGOROBYA,
PhD. CANDIDATE

Miriam is an instructional/Curriculum Design & Training professional. She is a lifelong learner and teacher, always looking for learning opportunities to empower others. She is a STEM enthusiast and Math tutor at Syracuse University. 

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RAINA ECKHARDT, PhD, TREASURER, YIYA-US

Dr. Eckhardt is a mathematics professor at MCC, and also serves as the department’s Program Coordinator. Raina received her Doctor of Education with research in technology-enhanced mathematics education and program evaluation from Plymouth State University (PSU). 

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RICHARD JEONG

Rich is the Science Technology Officer on the RV Odyssey (formerly the Alucia, best known for Blue Planet 2). He worked in IT for nearly twenty years in Denver, DC, Uganda, and the US Antarctic Program, which included a winter at McMurdo Station and work on their Research Vessels. 

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JAMES KATUMBA

Katumba is a co-founder and executive director at Wezesha impact with rich knowledge in education and fundraising.

FRED BARUNGI

Fred is a contributor to the ICT industry in Uganda as a Hardware support, Lecturer and Researcher for over 17 years,he has a wealth of experience in ICT.

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