We are pleased to formally introduce two new colleagues here at the Belin-Blank Center!
Dr. Nesibe Karakis is a Postdoctoral Research Scholar in STEM Excellence and Leadership at the Belin-Blank Center in the College of Education at the University of Iowa. She earned her doctorate in Gifted, Creative, and Talented Studies from Purdue University. She is a former middle school math teacher in Turkey. Dr. Karakis’ research focuses on STEM education, professional development, student achievement, quantitative (e.g., statistical analysis, machine learning) and qualitative data analysis, and students from underrepresented populations (e.g., students from ethnically diverse or low-income backgrounds) in gifted education.
Dominic Balestrieri-Fox is the Belin-Blank Center’s new Administrative Services Coordinator. He works to support many programs across the Center, including the Iowa Online AP Academy, AP Summer Institute, and the Scholastic Art & Writing Awards. He earned his B.A. in Political Science from Northwestern University in 2020, where his studies focused on international security and environmental policy. His most recent position before joining the Belin-Blank Center was a US Student Program Fulbright appointment in Trabzon, Turkey, where he taught English speaking lessons at Karadeniz Teknik University. His interests include the intersections between the environment and security, diplomacy, and sustainable agriculture.
Nesibe and Dominic are fantastic additions to our staff, and we are delighted to work alongside them. If you encounter them when you contact the Belin-Blank Center, please join us in welcoming them!