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Meet the team

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Arvind Subramaniam

CEO & Founder

Arvind is a recent graduate from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, a masters student at North Carolina State University, a clinical research specialist at Duke University, and has hopes to attend medical school in the near future.

While in his senior year at UNC, it became apparent how much disparity existed in the populations of people around us. While one community could have every item or resource necessary for success, other communities were unable to provide the basic necessities due to poor representation and income inequality created by systematic oppression. How could this be changed? Conversations with mentors led him to the idea that education was the key to success for all.

While education was the key to helping people improve their situation, he was unsure as to how to do it. He felt that there were plenty of people willing to teach and plenty of students who were in our school system, but one major area was lacking…

In all of our schools, especially those in socioeconomically depressed areas, supplies are few and far between. Teachers are forced to use their own income to help their students. If we provide teachers with the supplies necessary to support their classrooms, we could not only change education, but help provide the change our future generations need.

So, he asked all his friends to join his team, build something for the future, help teachers and students, and build a brand backed by an initiative for all.

 

Welcome to The Knowledge Block family. We’re excited you are here, and remember: success is just a walk down our block.

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Elizabeth Byrd

Elizabeth is a graduate of UNC-Chapel Hill with a degree in information science. Currently she works as a technology consultant in NYC.

 

The reason I joined the Knowledge Block was more that just believing in KB's mission, but my passion to make an impact in education and information accessibility. The Knowledge Block has a simple but powerful mission to connect teachers with the resources they need to be successful. I knew I wanted to help spread their mission and apply my knowledge in tech to give back to the community and empower others. Working with the Knowledge Block has allowed me to give back to a community that helped shape who I am today and gave me a great educational foundation.

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Juan Aguilar

Juan Aguilar is an electrical designer in Raleigh, North Carolina. He joined The Knowledge Block in August of 2019.

 

I joined The Knowledge Block because I believe that everyone should have the right to an education, and as someone that came from a background whose parents did not have the means to get basic education, I know how valuable education is. I believe that economic and social backgrounds should not matter -- you should be able to have a classroom that has all the materials and supplies to run properly, no matter where you are. I joined The Knowledge Block because I believe in our vision and it’s one that is personal to me. 

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Jakob Bower

Jakob Bower is a senior music and English major at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and performs in several North Carolina-based bands. He joined the Knowledge Block in May 2019.

 

I joined The Knowledge Block because my whole life has been filled with amazing teachers. My mother has been a teacher for many years, and she is one of the first people I think of when I consider the power and joy that educators can bring to young students. By working with The Knowledge Block, I can begin to give back all that I’ve received over the years, and I cherish the opportunity to inspire educators and students alike through our mission.

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Sneha SatHish

Sneha is currently a senior at the University of Florida pursuing a degree in nutritional sciences and a masters in public health with a focus on epidemiology. She is a clinical psychology researcher with a focus in Parkinson's. She hopes to attend medical school next fall. 

 

I joined Knowledge Block because I believe that there are very few things more powerful than a good education. A student shouldn't be limited by their socioeconomic background and KB acknowledges that. To play even a small role in their overarching mission is a privilege and I can't wait to see show far our missions extends.

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Ikaagarjot Singh

Ikaagarjot is a graduate of Rochester Institute of Technology and majored in computing security. Ikaagarjot currently works in Raleigh as a systems administrator.

 

I joined The Knowledge Block because I believe technology is the way of the future and finding a way to provide technology to anybody who needs it is the best way to close the socioeconomic gap. No one should be forced to fall behind because of lack of access to technical equipment and with my IT background, this will be the best way for me to contribute to The Knowledge Block's mission.

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Teresa aguilar

Teresa is currently enrolled in Durham Tech and transferring out to UNC. She is majoring in sports medicine.

 

I joined The Knowledge Block because education is very important to me. Growing up I’ve always thought about helping people, and this is a perfect way to start! I believe everyone deserves a better education. It is a chance for them to better themselves in the best way possible! Coming from parents that didn't receive the best education has motivated me to help others .

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Rebecca Stojancic

Rebecca is an NC State University graduate with a degree in arts studies with a visual arts concentration. She is currently completing a second degree in molecular, cellular and developmental biology at NC State University, with hopes of attending medical school. She joined The Knowledge Block in December 2019.

 

I joined the Knowledge Block after hearing about their mission, and recognizing that the work being done was important to our community. Education is so valuable and being able to be a part of a team that is striving to make it more obtainable, and one that supports teachers and strengthens their classrooms, is very rewarding. My hope is we can continue to grow and support more educators in their pursuit, and help to make a difference in theirs and their students’ lives.

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Aditi Goyal

Aditi is a junior at NC State University majoring in biology. She intends to pursue a career in research upon graduation. Aditi joined the Knowledge Block in September of 2019.

 

I firmly believe that many of the worlds problems can be helped, if not solved by education. When looking for extracurriculars, Arvind suggested I help the Knowledge Block with events and small tasks, and it aligned perfectly with my values. The Knowledge Block quickly became a space where I could share my ideas and make a visible difference in other's lives, and my role grew along with the organization. There is nothing I am more proud to do than work for the Knowledge Block. I look forward to helping the Knowledge Block reach its full potential and impact all the students we can.

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Bryton Shoffner

Bryton Shoffner is a sophomore at UNC-Chapel Hill majoring in computer science. He is also a clinical research specialist at Duke University and will be at PayPal in San Jose, CA this summer as a software engineering intern. He joined The Knowledge Block in May 2019.

 

I’ve always wanted to use my skills in technology to make some sort of positive impact on educational accessibility. Being able to join The Knowledge Block has been the perfect opportunity for me to make a difference alongside other talented and passionate people.

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Jhana Parikh

Jhana is a graduate of UNC Chapel Hill with a bachelor of science in psychology and is a clinical research coordinator at Duke University. She is also a percussion instructor at Chapel Hill High School, Paradigm Percussion, and Carolina Gold Drum and Bugle Corps, and has taught at several other music programs in the state. She joined The Knowledge Block in April of 2020.

I joined The Knowledge Block because I believe education changes lives. As both a student and teacher, I know firsthand the impact of quality instruction as well as how challenging a lack of resources can be. Furthermore, education is tied to health and wellbeing, and by providing support for learning spaces we can additionally support other areas. I’m excited and grateful for the opportunity to be part of this team and make a difference.

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