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Liberty + Leadership News: April 29


We hope you enjoy these news stories about TFAS activities, alumni and events this week. Sign up to receive TFAS updates, and visit us on social media for additional up-to-the-moment TFAS news!

Alumni Feature: Nicole Jain ’08

“A Mental Health Journey,” co-authored by Jain and Sharma.

Education policy expert and mental health advocate Nicole Jain ’08 adopted a new title during the pandemic: published author. Collaborating with her brother Ravi Sharma, the sibling duo coauthored the children’s book, “Our Mom, Our Superhero – A Mental Health Journey,” which reflects their shared childhood experiences and individual passions for mental health education.  

Based on their own childhood story, the book focuses on a set of siblings dealing with societal stigma while seeking treatment with their mother’s mental health challenges. Written from the children’s perspective, Jain and Sharma combine narrative elements with informative definitions to engage young readers with easy-to-understand definitions to provide an educationally meaningful look into understanding mental health matters. 

TFAS is proud to be one of many partners in Nicole’s journey to courageous leadership. When reflecting on her time in the program, Jain emphasized the importance of the relationships she still has with several alumni, happily noting that she regularly keeps in touch with them. 

“When you’re in the program, you don’t recognize the impact until later on,” Jain said of her TFAS experience.  

By following her passion, Jain has had the opportunity to enact meaningful change in the world around her. Learn more about her journey and the book at TFAS.org/Jain. You can learn about more recently published books by TFAS alumni at TFAS.org/BookDay22.

“Lessons for Remote Learning after Two Years of the Pandemic”

After two years of navigating remote learning and education during the COVID-19 pandemic, what lessons can be gleaned? Ted Tucker, executive director of TFAS high school division, the Foundation for Teaching Economics (FTE), answers this question in a recent op-ed for eSchool News.

Tucker offers a positive outlook taken from his personal experience offering both in-person and virtual classes for high school students and teachers. For example, TFAS learned that online courses can be a partial solution to the existing inequities in education that cause some students to fall behind. This is because any student, no matter where they are or what time constraints they face, can engage with educational content.

“At FTE, we found that virtual tools allowed us to serve more students and teachers from across the country, which has created a fuller and more diverse student body, thanks to reduced travel costs,” Tucker writes.

For virtual education to be effective, technology must be used creatively, and students must be engaged in the content like they would be in an in-person class. That is where TFAS comes in – FTE offers innovative and interactive activities to teach students and to educate teachers on how to better engage with their students.

This summer, TFAS high school programs will offer 18 in-person and four fully virtual tracks. Discover Tucker’s thoughts on other lessons from two years of pandemic education in the full op-ed in eSchool News.

Post of the Week

Ambassador Paula J. Dobriansky will speak to TFAS alumni in a special virtual session on the current crisis in Ukraine and the humanitarian repercussions of the conflict next Thursday, May 5.



TFAS Vice President of Academic Affairs Dr. Anne Bradley delivered a lecture on democratic socialism at John Brown University’s Center for Faith and Flourishing.

TFAS Grewcock Senior Scholar Dr. Donald Devine writes about the failures of bureaucracy in an article for The American Spectator.

Sarah Westwood, Novak ’15, describes the newest battle in the education culture war, a Supreme Court case on school prayer, in the Washington Examiner.

Mollie Hemingway, Novak ’04, joined the Core Principles podcast to discuss her latest book, “Rigged.”

Michael Brauer ’09 has been promoted to data analytics officer, managing marketing automation, research and database initiatives at Security National Bank.

Naomi Schaefer Riley, Novak ’01, writes about termination of parental rights in the foster care system for the Washington Examiner.

Dimitri Simes, Novak ’20, writes about the Battle of Slavyansk and the Donbas War rebels for The American Conservative.

Curt Mills, Novak ’18, analyzes the recent elections in France for The American Conservative, noting that President Macron’s reelection is the first in nearly 20 years.

Robby Soave, Novak ’17, argues that Elon Musk’s Twitter takeover will not erode democracy or freedom of speech in a Reason article.

Bill Wirtz ’17 explains how Ukraine upended Europe’s agriculture and energy policies in an article for National Interest.

Laura Lee Burkett ’14 has returned to the Hill this month as the legislative director for Sen. Deb Fischer.

Matthew Continetti, Novak ’08, discusses his new book, “The Right: The Hundred Year War for American Conservatism,” in an interview with C-Span.

Christian Townsend, Law ’19, writes about a property rights battle in Nashville in a piece for The Cannon.

Eliora Katz, PPF ’19, is now the director of government relations and policy for FTX US Derivatives.

Arkansas’ Sen. Tom Cotton has endorsed Kent Keirsey ’02 in the primary race for North Carolina’s 13th Congressional District.

Frederico Bartels, PPF ’18, opines for The Washington Times on President Biden’s unclear strategy for the 2023 defense budget.

Jennifer Kabbany, Novak ’02, writes about a recent federal appeals court decision on some University of Central Florida policies that has implications on free speech in an article for The College Fix.

Carmen Geha ’08 is quoted on her personal experience in Lebanon in this article for The Frontier Post.

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