Leadership Team

Student Leadership Team

wwa-1 Anish Kanoria ‘18 is a senior international student from India and an Economics and Political Science double major. Together with Prof. Maria Hoehn, he has founded Vassar Refugee Solidarity and is the student leader of the initiative. He also serves as the President of the Vassar Student Association. 



UntitledPatrick DeYoung ’18 is a senior Political Science major at Vassar. He is a Vassar Veterans Posse Scholar and the Chair of Organizations for the Vassar Student Association. Pat is the coordinator for the initiative’s refugee resettlement efforts, currently focusing on the Albany Community and School Fundraising Project.



Sophia Slater ’18 is a senior Political Science and French & Francophone Studies double major. She spent both semesters of her junior year abroad in Paris, where she studied at Sciences Po, wrote articles on refugee issues for Newsweek, and was the local coordinator for VRS language tutoring programs. For this year she is the head website coordinator of the VRS site.



Millie Cunningham ’18  is a senior Political Science major and co-leader of the Oral Histories project. She is also captain of the Women’s Rowing team and works in the office of Athletic Communications. Millie studied abroad in Copenhagen, Denmark last semester, with coursework focusing on the European migrant “crisis,” international refugee law, and the experiences of migrant children.


Mojan Farid ‘20 is a sophomore Geography major and works with the Resettlement and Local Engagement Team within Vassar Refugee Solidarity. She is a member of Vice music and plans to study abroad her junior year. She was born in Iran and can speak Farsi fluently.



  Jonan Kiang ’21 is a prospective International Studies                major. He hopes to work in the international field to rectify            economic issues and have a hand in conflict resolution. He            serves as the local representative in the Rohingya Project.              Having spent a large amount of time in China, he speaks                Chinese and English   fluently.



Samira Afreen ’21 is a prospective Computer Science major with a correlate in Mathematics. She is the international representative of the Rohingya Project. She speaks Bangla, which is her first language.

Faculty Director

wwa-8Maria Höhn is the Marion Musser Lloyd ’32 Chair of History and International Studies. She is a German historian and scholar of the American military presence in Germany after WWII, with a special focus on the interaction between African American GIs and German society. Together with Anish Kanoria, she founded Vassar Refugee Solidarity to get the Vassar College community involved in findings ways to help with the unprecedented global movements of people and the resulting crises in states responses.

Ex-Officio Advisor

wwa-9Sam Speers is director of the Office of Religious & Spiritual Life and assistant dean for Campus Life and Diversity. He is past president of the Association of College and University Religious Affairs (ACURA). He recently completed an eight-year project as director of Secularity and the Liberal Arts, a Teagle Foundation working group of faculty and chaplains that asked what higher education leaders really mean when we call ourselves “secular.”  He is an ordained Presbyterian minister.
He advises Vassar Refugee Solidarity in the Mid-Hudson Refugee Solidarity Alliance.