Announcing Stoneleigh's 2017-2019 Emerging Leader Fellows

We are excited to announce the selection of our newest cohort of Emerging Leader Fellows!  Each of the five young professionals selected to pursue Fellowships this September bring substantial policy, research, and advocacy expertise to these important projects.  We look forward to supporting them in their efforts to improve postsecondary outcomes for vulnerable young people, enhance services provided to youth experiencing homelessness, and end school pushout for LGBT and gender non-conforming students.   

Seth Morones, MSEd

Organization: The Field Center

Project: Seth will increase the postsecondary supports available to youth aging out of foster care through research, direct technical assistance to a cohort of Pennsylvania colleges, and the development of a statewide directory of postsecondary services for these youth.

About the Fellow: Seth is a compassionate leader with a commitment to improving education outcomes for youth in foster care or experiencing homelessness. Seth received an MSEd in education policy from the University of Pennsylvania, and a BA in sociology from the University of Northern Colorado. Prior to moving to Philadelphia, Seth focused on postsecondary support systems for youth aging out of foster care as a Ronald E. McNair Scholar. In addition to Seth's work to improve outcomes for homeless and foster youth, Seth has a strong passion for social justice education, economic and racial equity, and LGBTQ rights. Since receiving a master’s degree in 2015, Seth has worked with youth development programs at the Urban Affairs Coalition and on early childhood education issues with Action for Early Learning at Drexel University.

Rashni Stanford 

Organization: People’s Emergency Center

Project: Rashni will establish two aligned coalitions–one comprised of young people who have experienced homelessness and another comprised of youth-serving agencies–that will advocate for improved policies and generate new resources to address youth homelessness in Philadelphia.

About the Fellow: Rashni is a social worker dedicated to expanding and evolving how social workers effect social change in Philadelphia. For the past ten years, she has worked in a direct service capacity with Philadelphia-area youth and their families in shelters, residential and juvenile justice placement facilities, and the child welfare system. Most recently, she conducted qualitative interviews with young people facing housing insecurity with the national research initiative Voices of Youth Count. She will receive her MSW from Bryn Mawr College in May of 2017, and is a proud graduate of the Community College of Philadelphia’s behavioral health program and Chestnut Hill College's psychology program.

Whiquitta Tobar, JD

Organization: Community Legal Services’ (CLS) Youth Justice Project

Project: Whiquitta will improve access to civil legal services for young people experiencing homelessness by directly representing these youth, advocating for policy change, and developing new legal practice tools.

About the Fellow: Whiquitta is an attorney with experience in juvenile justice and child welfare policy advocacy. As a Zubrow Fellow at Juvenile Law Center, Whiquitta co-facilitated work on issues related to youth experiencing homelessness, eliminating juvenile court fees and fines, and securing an appropriate education for youth in the justice system. Outside of work, she devotes her time to mentoring and creating wide-scale academic and cultural experiences for underprivileged and marginalized youth. Whiquitta received a BA in political science from Alabama A&M University and a JD from Georgetown University Law Center, where she was a Public Interest Law Scholar, Dean’s Certificate recipient, and a Pro Bono Board member. 

Amber Wilson

Organization: Philadelphia Youth Network

Project: Amber will advance policy and practice reforms designed to increase postsecondary access for Philadelphia's opportunity youth (16-24 year-olds who are neither in school nor working).

About the Fellow: Amber is a social worker specializing in working with youth and young adult populations. In May of 2017, she will graduate with her MSW from the University of Pennsylvania’s School of Social Policy and Practice, with a specialization in Child Welfare and Well-Being.  While studying at Penn, Amber interned with the Youth and Workforce Development department at Episcopal Community Services of Philadelphia, where she focused on program design and delivery, as well as an evaluation of a pilot mentoring program. She also worked closely with the Youth Sentencing and Reentry Project as a Research Fellow on a collaborative project between the School of Social Policy and Penn’s law school.  Amber received her BSW from the University of Georgia.

Lizzy Wingfield

Organization: Education Law Center

Project: Lizzy will promote policy and practice changes focused on decreasing exclusionary discipline, reducing discrimination, and removing educational barriers that disproportionately affect LGBT and gender non-conforming youth in Greater Philadelphia schools.

About the Fellow: Lizzy brings significant experience working with young people who have experienced trauma, both due to domestic violence and to incarceration. She is currently finishing her JD at Temple University's Beasley School of Law, where she serves as a Staff Editor for the Temple Law Review. Both in law school and while pursuing her BA in philosophy at Haverford College, Lizzy has worked for a number of public interest law organizations in Philadelphia, including Women's Law Project, Philadelphia Legal Assistance, Philadelphia Volunteers for the Indigent Program, and Community Legal Services.