CIYA Faculty Bios


John Ungerleider is the Co-Director of the Current Issues and Youth Activism Institute.

Dr. John Ungerleider is a professor of Conflict Transformation at the SIT Graduate Institute. He founded and has run the Vermont Governor’s Institute on Current Issues and Youth Activism for 25 years. John also founded and directs the Child Labor Education and Action (CLEA) project for Vermont teens to work against oppressive child labor, and the SIT Youth Peacebuilding and Leadership Programs for teens from communities in conflict around the world, such as recent groups from Iraq, Burma, Turkey, Libya, Egypt, Tunisia, Cyprus, Liberia, Yemen, East Timor, Mexico and Bangladesh. As a Fulbright Senior Scholar he facilitated conflict resolution activities in Cyprus. John wrote and performs a musical “co-opera” about global warming: Secret of the Seasons.

One of John Ungerleider’s deepest passions is the intersection of activism and the arts.  Click the song title to listen to his newly released song about global warming, “Warm Summer Rain.”


Belle Barthelmess

Belle Barthelmess is the Co-Director of the Current Issues and Youth Activism Institute for Summer 2015.

CyBelle “Belle” Barthelmess specializes in International Education and previously served as the Dean of Students/Faculty at the International Leadership Training Institute in South Africa. She holds a Master’s degree in International Education from the School for International Training, where the Current Issues & Youth Activism Institute takes place, as well as a Bachelor’s degree in Communications and Urban Youth Work. She has traveled the world leading student groups in the International Honors Program, from India to Argentina, and was the Global Program Coordinator for Rustic Pathways, a travel/service program, in Fiji. She has worked extensively with youth in a variety of immersive educational settings and is currently serving as the Program Director for World Learning’s Youth Peacebuilding and Leadership Programs. Her professional training includes intercultural communications, tribal leadership, leading diversity and multicultural teams, and racial reconciliation. She encourages students to explore their own cultural identity and challenge themselves to understand other cultural perspectives.




simonSimon Norton is the Co-Director of the Current Issues and Youth Activism Institute.
Please Note: Si is on leave for Summer 2015.

Simon ‘Si’ Norton, has been the Co-Director of GICIYA for more than 12 years, and also serves as a Faculty member, teaching an Issue Group entitled Global Children.  He is the Program Director of SIT/World Learning’s Youth Peacebuilding and Leadership Programs, running more than 25 programs each year with 800 youth from around the world.  In the spring, Si co-teaches a Graduate course for 50 students at SIT entitled Youth Program Leadership & Design.  Si is an accomplished teacher, trainer and facilitator of youth education, program design, leadership, team-building  global issues, peacebuilding and dialogue, U.S. civics, communication skills and kayaking.  He regularly runs staff training’s for his own teams, as well as training’s and consulting for many other organizations.  Si has worked with youth from more than 130 countries and all 50 U.S. states, and traveled extensively for fun and work, running youth programs in Uganda, Rwanda, Iraq, Serbia, Mexico, Northern Ireland and Panama.  He has a Bachelor Degree in World Issues from the School for International Training, and a Master’s in Global Education from Harvard University.  In his free time, Si loves to kayak, paddle board, ski, hike, mountain bike, play ping pong, work on organic farms, watch movies, and sit on his deck.  Si lives at Lake Tahoe, Nevada, and regularly commutes between the west coast and Vermont.