Meet the team

Holly Wise



Holly graduated from Murray State University with her master’s degree in mass communications and has spent the majority of her career managing newsrooms in various media markets in New Mexico and Texas.

Holly is passionate about multimedia storytelling with an emphasis on solutions journalism. To that end, she founded VoiceBox Media in 2012 and has reported in Ethiopia, Kenya, Haiti, and led reporting trips to multiple locations in the United States.

She is the founding faculty member of the Texas State Global News Team.

Communications Team 2018

Ashley Skinner


Ashley Skinner is a journalism major with a minor in psychology at Texas State University. She graduated from Bandera High School in 2016 and will graduate from Texas State in May of 2019.

She won a state championship in news writing while in high school, and worked for the Texas State newspaper, The University Star, as the news editor her freshman year in college.

She wanted to embark on this journey to Guyana to broaden her understanding of a different culture and country.

Skyler Jennings


Skyler Jennings is a journalism major and honor’s studies minor at Texas State University. She’s a junior and will graduate in May of 2019. Skyler has been published several times in the school’s newspaper The University Star.

Skyler is excited to go to Guyana to learn about a culture while also covering the people and their stories. She is also excited to learn more about the respiratory care students going with the team and covering their work in Guyana.

Lindsey Blisard

Public Relations Practitioner

Lindsey Blisard is a Public Relations major and Sociology minor at Texas State University. She is awaiting her graduation in the summer of 2018.

After graduation, she plans to work closely with non-profits around Austin and continue to build her career at Texas’s only cooperatively run grocery store.

She is excited to travel to Guyana and learn about the people that live there and their culture.

Katie Burrell


Katie Burrell is a journalism major at Texas State University with a minor in communication studies. She started her journalism career as a contributing writer for her junior college paper in Dallas, Texas and worked as a public relations intern for Champion Management. Later, she transferred to Texas State and started working for the University Star.

She is a national winner for the Young Spurs contest from the Mayborn School of Journalism. As a member of the Global News Team, Katie hopes to gain more experience in news reporting and gathering before she applies to graduate school for journalism.

Alana Zamora

Public Relations Practitioner

Alana Zamora is majoring in public relations with a concentration in digital media and minoring in leadership studies at Texas State University. Her interests include photography, traveling, and visiting museums.

Zamora has a passion for promoting educational programming and bringing awareness of resources to local communities. As an emerging young professional with experiences in increasing online brand visibility, and coordinating promotions and events, she will be seeking a communications position at a museum upon graduation in May of 2018.

In Guyana, Zamora hopes to strengthen her storytelling skills, and use her photography and videography skills to capture memorable moments during her study abroad experience.

Communications Team 2017

Darcy Sprague


Darcy is finishing up her last year at Texas State University and is awaiting her graduation in December 2017.

After graduation, she hopes to begin working on a newspaper in central Texas as an investigative or political journalist. Currently, she is excited for her plans to adopt a puppy, move in with her boyfriend and travel to New Zealand for a month.

In her free time she enjoys fashion, interior design, reading, writing novels and spending time outside. Darcy’s most important goal is to change the world just a little through her reporting and the novels she hopes to write.

Taeler Kallmerten


Taeler is a junior electronic media major with a minor in honors studies. Her interests include photography and film as well as ukulele and playing soccer in her free time. She has a passion for documentary style of film and hopes to one day make her own documentary.

In Nicaragua she hopes to put her camera skills to practice and create some visually stimulating videography, while learning to tell a story through the lens of a camera.

Exsar Arguello


Exsar is a senior at Texas State University studying journalism and political science. When this study abroad was presented to him, he knew he couldn’t pass up this opportunity.

Exsar has always loved traveling and learning about different people who help make our societies so interesting. He says that going to Nicaragua will be beneficial for him both professionally and personally as he will be gaining experience in his field of study, along with that personal adventure he craves. He’s looking forward to creating content that the world can see, and hopefully shed some light on different issues, and of course give voice to the beautiful people of Nicaragua.

Allison Fluker


Allison is a senior at Texas State University where she is majoring in mass communications with a concentration in digital media innovations as well as having a minor in anthropology. She has a passion for photography and volunteering.

Her interest in mass communications began during high school when she had the opportunity to be apart of the school news team and take film classes. Allison had the opportunity to study abroad in high school with her French class and once again in the summer of 2015. This time, she studied the language in France as well as the culture and it’s history. She became intrigued learning about anthropology and furthering her studies in French early on in college after taking her first cultural anthropology class.

She hopes to incorporate mass communications and anthropology in the future to aid underprivileged indigenous societies. When Allison is not busy studying for classes, she likes to relax by reading a good book, having a got cup of coffee, or taking photos while on a hike.

Monica Grice


Monica is a senior at Texas State University. Her love for writing and sharing stories is what inspired her to go on this trip.

This will be Monica’s first time traveling abroad. She is most excited to see the people and culture of Nicaragua and share that through her writing. She hopes that this trip will give her an amazing and unique experience and help open doors for her journalism career.

Outside of school, Monica works and loves being outdoors. She will be graduating in August 2017 with a journalism degree.

Communications Team 2016

Magdalena Avila


For as long as Magdalena can remember, traveling the world has been on her to-do list. Being able to learn and help others all while visiting a new country is what inspired her to join this team.

Magdalena graduated in May 2016 from Texas State University, and hopes to inspire other first generation college students. As she begins this new adventure, Magdalena is excited to share the stories of others around the world.

Elisha Colip


Elisha graduated from Texas State University in May 2016. She jumped at the opportunity to partake in the Nicaragua study abroad her last year at Texas State.

One of the big reasons she was drawn to this study abroad is because of its unique chance to help people as well as practice the art of storytelling in multimedia forms. Elisha is excited to see what this opportunity has to share with her.

Amanda Gibson

Public relations practitioner 

Amanda Gibson graduated from Texas State University in May 2016. She is a public relations major and minors in business administration. Upon graduation, Gibson hopes to move to her home town of Houston, and begin a career working in corporate PR. Eventually, she hopes to start a nonprofit organization working in other countries assisting locals with healthcare and manual labor.

Maggie Sheppard

Public relations practitioner

Maggie graduated from Texas State University in May 2016. She chose to major in public relations because of her passion to address social issues in the world through spreading awareness. Upon graduation, she hopes to begin working at a public relations firm specializing in consulting nonprofits.

Alicia Vazquez

Public relations practitioner

As a first-generation college student, Alicia has dedicated herself to breaking through her own boundaries. She graduated from Texas State University in December 2016.

Alicia’s passion for travel and helping people drove her to become part of this team. Alicia hopes to motivate others to pursue their passions and is looking forward to sharing the stories from this experience with the world.

Mary Edmon

Public relations practitioner

Mary graduated from Texas State University in December 2016.


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An immersive study abroad program in the School of Journalism & Mass Communication