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The Roots of AGC

Sarah Elizabeth’s life mission is to broaden the world’s assumptions about the purpose of education.  Since earning a Masters of Philosophy from the University of Cambridge in England, she has traveled to over 80 different countries across 6 continents, extensively immersing herself in educational philosophies and world languages, as well as creating international alliances that have informed the design and culture of the Academy for Global Citizenship.

Our Founder

In addition to studying the application of the International Baccalaureate framework in various cultural contexts across the globe, her earlier initiatives included the development and implementation of globally cooperative literacy programs for orphan children in northern Tanzania.  Sarah Elizabeth has further completed studies in Nonprofit Management at Harvard Business School.

During her five-year term as Vice President of Education on the governing board of the United Nations Association, Sarah Elizabeth fostered broader implementation of The Growing Connection, an organic gardening initiative established to cross-culturally connect children and educators across continents through technology. She has also served on the Chicago Chapter of the United States Green Building Council Green Schools Advocacy Committee, Chicago Public Schools’ Environmental Action Plan Taskforce, and is an active founding member of Conservation International’s Generation Conservation. Sarah Elizabeth's additional leadership and civic contributions have also included executive board memberships with Northwestern Memorial Hospital and the Art Institute of Chicago.

Sarah Elizabeth was selected as a United States Delegate to Terra Madre in 2010, where she met with representatives from over 60 nations to discuss the sustainability of our local and global food systems.  In 2011, she was named one of Monocle’s Top 20 International Pioneers in Education alongside Michelle Rhee, and visited the White House to receive a national award from Michelle Obama.

In 2012 and 2013, Sarah Elizabeth was appointed as one of 100 Delegates from 20 countries across the globe who assembled for the G8 Young Global Leaders Summit, preparing recommendations for a communiqué that was presented to President Obama and the U.S. Department of State.  In 2013, Sarah Elizabeth was recognized by Forbes as one of the nation’s “top five game changers in education”, was the recipient of the GOOD 100 list of “people pushing the world forward through doing” and was selected by the Council on Global Affairs as an Emerging Leader Fellow. When she is not traveling around the world, giving TED talks and sharing the Academy for Global Citizenship’s vision for systemic change, Sarah Elizabeth enjoys working on her plans to build a net-positive energy home in Chicago.

“The Academy for Global Citizenship is a learning laboratory that was founded to foster broader systemic change. Our larger vision is focused on extracting and scaling modules of innovation to change the way districts across our nation envision teaching and learning in the 21st century.”

– SARAH ELIZABETH IPPEL