- Credential Evaluations
- Partners & Programs
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World Education Services (WES) is a 501(c)3 non-profit social enterprise dedicated to helping international students, immigrants, and refugees achieve their educational and career goals in the U.S. and Canada. WES evaluates international educational qualifications, supports the integration of immigrants into the workforce, and provides philanthropic funding to immigrant-serving organizations. Since 1974, WES has provided credential evaluations to nearly three million individuals from more than 200 countries.
We enable immigrants, refugees, and international students to make full use of their education, skills, knowledge, and experience so they can achieve economic and social mobility.
We partner widely to facilitate social and economic mobility for the individuals we serve, and we seek to build open and equitable systems that provide access to opportunity for immigrants, refugees, and international students.
We ensure growth, organizational resilience, and continued impact by anticipating and pivoting to meet the needs of customers, academic institutions, clients, partners, and stakeholders in a dynamic environment.
We foster an inclusive, mission-driven culture where every employee feels valued, encouraged, and motivated, where every employee is empowered to do excellent work every day, and where every employee becomes a catalyst for change.
We maintain the highest standard of excellence and scale as a financially independent, sustainable organization driving measurable social impact.
Architect and urban development specialist Kunle Ifesanya discusses how WES credential evaluations, tools, and resources helped him achieve his professional goals in the U.S.
“The WES evaluation is like saying, ‘Okay, she has the equivalent grade point in the U.S., although she received her grades in a differentcountry. WES gave me confidence and assured me that my education was worth something.”
“When the opportunity to participate in the Skilled Immigrant Integration Program (SIIP) came, we immediately decided to apply. SIIP really catalyzed everything we were trying to accomplish.”
Esther T. Benjamin has been a global executive in the public, private, and civil society sectors for more than 25 years. Before joining WES as CEO and executive director, Esther worked with Laureate Education, Inc., a leading global higher education organization. Esther served as the Associate Director for Global Operations of the U.S. Peace Corps, and held senior management roles with the International Youth Foundation and the International Partnership for Microbicides.
Shamira Madhany joined WES in 2018 after more than two decades of public service. She has extensive experience working with licensing bodies, settlement agencies, and higher education and post-secondary sectors in Ontario. She served as the chief architect of several government programs that enable highly skilled immigrants to obtain employment in their fields. Shamira played a key role in the launch of WES Canada in 2000 during her tenure at the Ontario Ministry of Citizenship and Immigration as Provincial Lead, Access to Professions and Trades.
As Deputy Executive Director for Global Talent Policy and Programs for WES, Paul Feltman oversees the WES Global Talent Bridge Program and develops outreach and education programs, community partnerships, and policy initiatives focused on helping immigrants successfully integrate into academic and professional settings. He serves as the steering committee chair of IMPRINT, a coalition of organizations active in the field of immigrant professional integration. Paul also serves on the advisory board of the Massachusetts New Americans Integration Institute and the National Blue Ribbon Panel of the Community College Consortium for Immigrant Education.
Cheryl Cramer Toto has spent over two decades in operational leadership and business transformation in the private sector and with non-profit organizations. Before joining WES as COO Cheryl served as President and CEO of the Marketing Science Institute. Cheryl also spent ten years at Houghton Mifflin Harcourt where she helped to turn a paper-based educational publishing house into one of the sector’s digital pioneers.
Monica Munn joined WES in 2019, bringing over a decade of experience leading social impact and economic development initiatives in the philanthropic, social enterprise, and private sectors. Monica oversees WES’ philanthropic initiatives, including the WES Mariam Assefa Fund, funding partnerships, and corporate philanthropy. Previously, Monica held several positions at the Rockefeller Foundation and worked at Next Street, a social enterprise that drives equitable economic and community development. She currently serves on the steering committee of the Workforce Matters Funders Network.
Hans de Wit, Board Chair, is Director of the ‘Center for International Higher Education’ (CIHE) at Boston College and a founding member, and past president, of the European Association for International Education (EAIE). He is actively involved in assessment and consultancy in international education for organizations like the European Commission, UNESCO, World Bank, and the European Parliament, among many others.
Hans has written and co-written many books and articles on international education and is the founding editor of the ‘Journal of Studies in International Education’ (Association for Studies in International Education/SAGE). He is a regular contributor to University World News and is on the editorial boards of multiple other publications. He has received multiple awards for his contribution to the field of international education.
He holds a bachelor’s degree, master’s degree, and a doctoral degree from the University of Amsterdam.
Lynn Shotwell, Board Vice-Chair, is President and CEO of Worldwide ERC, the leading trade association for talent management and global mobility. She previously served as Head of Global Outreach and Operations for the Society for Human Resource Management. Lynn is on the European Commission Expert Group on Economic Migration, the B20 Employment Task Force, the Business Mechanism of the Global Forum on Migration and Development, and the editorial board for the Journal for Migration and Human Security. She is a frequent lecturer on mobility policy and has testified before the U.S. Congress, United Nations, and World Trade Organization.
Lynn received her Juris Doctorate degree from the University of Michigan and a bachelor’s degree in International Relations from James Madison College and the Honors College at Michigan State University.
Audrey Hendley, Board Secretary/Treasurer, leads Global Travel and Lifestyle Services at American Express, one of the largest multi-channel consumer travel agencies in the world. Audrey is responsible for delivering premium services to card members, overseeing the digital travel booking experience, travel benefits and programs, supplier partnerships, and marketing and engagement strategies for the premium card member base. In 20 years at American Express, Audrey has earned many of American Express’ top awards. Her teams have also won the Chairman’s Award for Innovation.
Audrey is Chair for the New York Women’s Interest Network (WIN) and is an honors graduate of Trinity College in Dublin, Ireland, where she received her master’s in Marketing Management.
Helen Hayward was born and educated in Hong Kong and came to Canada as an international student. She has a successful track record of advising and leading change in high profile and complex environments. Hayward recently retired as a National Partner with Western Management Consultants (WMC), a Canadian management consulting and executive search firm. She was previously with Mercer Delta International Organizational Consulting, a consulting firm based in New York. As a Certified Management Consultant, she has consulted extensively with national, provincial, and municipal governments and their agencies. She serves on multiple health care, justice, and education boards.
Samuel Artmann is General Manger at Sonder, Inc. He was previously Vice-President of Strategic Partnerships at Web.com. He has also worked as a management consultant for Oliver Wyman and Bain & Company, as an investment banker at Lehman Brothers, and as an entrepreneur, co-founding Guiato, a location-based online marketing platform, and OndaLocal, an online marketing company that provides automated online marketing solutions for small businesses and franchise brands. Samuel currently serves on the Boards of Sanctuary Ventures and I Love ECommerce, both in São Paulo, Brazil. He is a graduate of the University of Karlsruhe (Germany) and the IESE Business School in Barcelona, Spain.
Ann Buller is widely recognized for her groundbreaking work in global citizenship education. A visionary leader who recently retired from her position as president and CEO of Centennial College, Ann has spearheaded many award-winning mentoring and outreach programs to help underrepresented individuals succeed in post-secondary education. She has earned several prestigious awards recognizing her excellence as a leader and mentor, most recently the 2016 World Federation of Colleges and Polytechnics Leadership Award, the Top 100 Most Powerful Women Award (2016, 2010) and the 2015 CBIE President’s Award for Distinguished Leadership for International Education. Ann is a graduate of Humber College, York University and Central Michigan University.
Misha Esipov is the Co-founder and Chief Executive Officer of Nova Credit, the world’s first cross-border consumer reporting agency. Nova has built a global network of credit bureaus to empower consumers to transport their financial identity wherever they move. Esipov oversees the overall strategic direction of the firm and leads Nova’s mission to “enable immigrants to access credit to realize their potential.” Before Nova, Misha was a private equity investor at Apollo Global Management. He started his career at Goldman Sachs where he was involved in corporate financing, mergers, and acquisitions. Misha was born in Russia and immigrated to the United States in the 1990s. He is a graduate of New York University and the Stanford Graduate School of Business.
A professor of mechanical engineering, Dr. Feridun Hamdullahpur has served as an educator and leader over the span of a more than 35-year career in research and higher education. His focus as president of the University of Waterloo has been twofold: fostering excellence in academics and research, and deepening the institution’s focus on innovation. Feridun previously served as the Provost and Vice-President Academic and as the Vice President Research and International at Carleton University in Ottawa. He holds a PhD in chemical engineering from the Technical University of Nova Scotia and bachelor’s and master’s degrees in mechanical engineering from the Technical University of Istanbul in Turkey.
Sidney Hargro is the executive director of the Philanthropy Network Greater Philadelphia. He is the former Executive Director of the Community Foundation of South Jersey, a startup community foundation, and has also served as the Senior Officer of Strategy and Organizational Learning at The Columbus Foundation, the nation’s 7th largest community foundation. He is the author of “Lessons Learned,” a chapter in the Foundation Center’s fundraising guide After the Grant: A Nonprofit’s Guide to Good Stewardship. Sidney serves on the Board of Grantmakers for Effective Organizations. He has served on boards of regional and national organizations including Wells Fargo Regional Foundation and CDC, United Way of Greater Philadelphia and Southern New Jersey, New Jersey Council for the Humanities, and the advisory committee of the New Jersey Nature Conservancy. He is a graduate of North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University, Ohio State University, and the United Theological Seminary.
Joanna Harries is the Senior Vice President of Expansion at Endeavor Global, the world’s leading organization working with high-impact entrepreneurs in more than 30 countries. Endeavor identifies, mentors, and co-invests in entrepreneurs that build world-class businesses and grow entrepreneurial ecosystems. The organization has tripled its footprint over the last decade. Joanna has launched Endeavor offices across the Middle East, North Africa, Europe, Asia, and North America. Prior to Endeavor, Joanna was an Acumen Fellow working in Mumbai and a brand manager at Unilever. Joanna is a graduate of Wilfrid Laurier University’s School of Business and Economics. She has been recognized as a Kauffman Fellow and serves on the advisory board for the Lazaridis Institute
An Egyptian-American, Maryana Iskander immigrated to the United States when she was young. She is currently CEO of Harambee Youth Employment Accelerator, which based in South Africa. She has a track record of scaling organizations through partnership models, data-driven delivery, talent management, and technology innovation. Prior to joining Harambe in 2012, she was Chief Operating Officer for Planned Parenthood Federation of America, a US $1 billion organization that is the nation’s largest provider of women’s reproductive healthcare. Maryana has been an associate at global business consulting firm McKinsey & Company, a strategy consultant for W.L. Gore & Associates, and a law clerk at Cravath, Swaine & Moore in New York, and Vinson & Elkins in Houston. She received her bachelor’s degree from Rice University and earned a Master of Science from Oxford University, where she was a Rhodes Scholar. She also holds a Juris Doctorate from Yale University.
Shakti Jauhar was most recently Senior Vice President of Global HR Operations and Shared Services for PepsiCo. In this role, he led PepsiCo’s strategic HR Digital Transformation which deployed and established Global Operations and Shared Services across 83 countries with 300 employees and contractors for PepsiCo’s HR and Payroll processes, technology, and services. The scope of the transformation included all HR functions comprising Board and Executive Total Rewards, Global Mobility, Compensation, Talent Management, and Talent Acquisition. Shakti also served as a member of PepsiCo’s Security Council. Throughout his career, Shakti has held various leadership roles in Manufacturing, Finance, and IT. Shakti has a Bachelor of Engineering from Thapar Institute of Engineering and Technology in Patiala, India.
Francisco Marmolejo has spent his career in international education leading and advising higher education, governmental, and non-governmental institutions. He has held leadership roles at the World Bank as its Global Coordinator for Higher Education and, more recently, as the Education Specialist for India and South Asia; and as Executive Director of CONAHEC, the Consortium for North American Higher Education Collaboration, a network of more than 160 colleges and universities from Canada, the U.S., and Mexico. He has been a fellow with the American Council on Education (ACE), and a consultant with the Organization for Economic and Cooperation Development (OECD). He is now based in Doha, Qatar, as the Education Advisor of the Qatar Foundation for Education, Science and Community Development. He was born in Ojuelos, Mexico, and holds an MBA from the Universidad Autónoma de San Luis Potosí.
Dewayne Matthews is a Fellow at the Lumina Foundation, an independent, private foundation committed to making opportunities for learning beyond high school available to all. In his prior role as Vice President for Strategy, he led the development of the Foundation’s goal to increase postsecondary attainment in the U.S. to 60% by 2025 and its first three strategic plans. Dewayne has served as Executive Director of the New Mexico Commission on Higher Education and Vice President of the Education Commission of the States. He is a graduate of the University of New Mexico, New Mexico Highlands University, and Arizona State University.
Aaron Williams has extensive experience in the strategic design and management of assistance programs in Latin America, Africa, Asia, and the Middle East. In addition to his role as Director of the Peace Corps, he was for 22 years a diplomat and senior official at the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), where he reached the rank of career minister in the Senior Foreign Service. He is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and serves on the boards of directors of the Ron Brown Scholar Program, and ChildFund International, as well as the George Washington University Elliott School of International Affairs’ Advisory Board. Aaron has also served on the board of directors for the U.S. Global Leadership Campaign, CARE, the National Peace Corps Association, and the Institute for Sustainable Communities. He earned his bachelor’s degree from Chicago State University, and an MBA from the University of Wisconsin – Madison.
We are diverse, passionate, and committed to our mission. We speak over 37 languages and represent more than 40 countries.
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