Meet Our 2018 Program Directors

Inspired by the Peace Corps, now hired by 7 Elements!


Three of our new Program Directors in the Dominican Republic share a common experience as returned Peace Corps volunteers (the fourth hails from the UK and followed her own inspired path to 7 Elements). Their training and dedication to serving people in our partner communities will provide an authentic learning experience for all of our groups. We’re pleased to introduce you to them:


Patrick Coad

Program: Building a Sustainable World

Patrick was raised in Carmel, Indiana and received his BA and MPA from Indiana University. He is a Returned Peace Corps Volunteer, and served in Nicaragua from 2007-2009. Upon completion of his Masters degree he went to Kenya and Ethiopia where he worked with rural farmers on income-generating activities. In 2014, he moved to Guatemala where he lived in the highlands and worked with Pencils of Promise on primary school education projects.


Katherine Buckingham

Program: Global Health Initiative

Katherine is from Ohio and learned the impact of experiential education by participating in various programs growing up.  After college, she moved to the Dominican Republic as a Peace Corps Volunteer working in public schools for 3 years. Most recently, Katherine was working with Timmy Global Health as a Medical Programs Coordinator in the Amazon region of Ecuador. She’s excited to be back on the island and working with a great group of people!


JoLyn Rekasis

Program: Sports Service Adventure

JoLyn is originally from Illinois and graduated with a double B.A. in Cultural Anthropology and Spanish. After undergrad, JoLyn was a Peace Corps Volunteer in the Dominican Republic, and for two years she lived in a small border town with limited access to amenities. Being immersed in the Dominican culture taught her the importance of sharing not only your food and material things, but also your time.

After her Peace Corps experience, she earned her M.A. in International Education Management at the Middlebury Institute of International Studies in Monterey, CA. She has traveled extensively through Latin America but is thrilled to return to her beloved Dominican Republic and to expose students to a different way of life and multiple perspectives.


Hilary Small

Program: Carribean Service Adventure

Hilary grew up on a sustainable organic farm in England which hosted international students through its WWOOF program. Early exposure to alternative education ignited her interest in global health, sustainable development and human security issues. After graduating in Anthropology, she traveled through Asia, India and South America while volunteering in various educational projects. She spent 3 years in Colombia as a teacher and Regional Educational Coordinator in the Caribbean, overseeing the wellbeing and pedagogical development of her team of teachers. Hilary is interested in yoga and diet and how mindfulness can be interwoven with public health. She is passionate about motivating youth and believes that empowering our future generations is key to developing a sustainable, healthy world.


Interested in signing up for a program? Teens should check out programs offered in partnership with Global Leadership Adventures and college/university students and staff should reach out directly to Crystal at