Our Team

Our program operates under the leadership of a diverse and innovative faculty and student team, representing a variety of experiences and backgrounds in international programs. Interested in partnering with us? Are you an international student who would like to attend CALS? Want to learn more about study abroad? Whatever the reason, feel free to contact us. We’re happy to connect with you.


JJose Cisneros Headshot (2018)

Jose Cisneros, Director, CALS International Programs
Jose Cisneros has extensive experience in international agriculture and business, and entrepreneurial development and solutions. He has participated in numerous international agricultural projects and has trained farmers, NGO trainers, and government officers from Africa, Asia, Latin America, Eastern Europe. At NC State, Cisneros founded CALS Global Academy, an initiative to train international professionals in agriculture and life sciences. He also developed the most comprehensive database of international activities among peer colleges of agriculture. Cisneros is the founder of AgriFoodGateway and the Global Agribusiness Program at the University of Missouri. As an entrepreneur, he has started six businesses in the horticulture, poultry, consumer retail, and mobile electronics industries. Contact: jose_cisneros@ncsu.edu.

Adrienne TuckerAdrienne LaBranche Tucker, Ph.D., Program Coordinator
Adrienne has a background in agriculture and environmental science and holds a Ph.D. in environmental planning, M.S. degree in turfgrass science, and a B.S. degree in ornamental horticulture. Adrienne’s research experiences include investigating plant drought stress tolerance in response to exogenous applications of plant growth stimulants, and alternative water source planning to meet non-potable irrigation needs. Adrienne has worked as a sustainability director in higher education to provide customized training  and program development. Prior to joining the CALS International Programs Office, Adrienne lived in France for two years. As the program coordinator, Adrienne oversees and manages the CALS International Programs’ initiatives and manages programs to increase CALS global engagement. Contact: adrienne_tucker@ncsu.edu.

Amber Beseli, Ph.D., Program Coordinator for Global Academy
Amber assists in the development and coordination of new initiatives and training for students, faculty, and international visitors. She developed a passion for international work after participating in several study abroad programs. Amber has B.S. and M.S. degrees in Agricultural Education and a Ph.D. in Crop Science with a minor in Agricultural Education. Each spring, she teaches “Global Issues in Agriculture,” which she developed in her doctoral program. Contact: alwillis@ncsu.edu.

Sara Guiti PradoSara Guiti Prado, Ph.D., Program Coordinator, CREdO 
Sara has a background in Environmental and Agricultural Sciences (B.Sc), Entomology (M.Sc), and Applied Ecology (Ph.D). Broadly her interests lie in promoting sustainable agriculture practices, which she believes can be achieved through targeted research programs and direct communication with those who can benefit most from these studies. As the CREdO coordinator, Sara gets to do what she loves, working directly with countries around the globe to help them Connect Research, Education and Outreach (CREdO) efforts which can help advance their national economy.  Contact: sara_prado@ncsu.edu.

Jenny LautzenheiserJenny Lautzenheiser, Global Partnerships Assistant
Jenny Lautzenheiser is currently a MSc student in Agricultural and Resource Economics.  Prior to graduate school, she was a manager with Palladium, an international development firm in Washington, DC.  Her portfolio stretched across different sectors (health, agriculture, economic development) and continents (Africa, Asia).  Jenny came to the office eager to learn and be involved in what the International Programs (IP) team was doing.  Her service is two-fold: she works as a Graduate Student Trainer with NCSU’s Global Academy and she works as an special assistant to the IP director, José Cisneros.  In her work with José, Jenny is developing a communication tool that will showcase CALS current institutional partnerships while highlighting potential opportunities for collaboration.  Jenny also loves to travel and because she can’t do much of it whilst in school, she’s grateful for the opportunities of rich cultural exchange with groups she encounters in her role as a Graduate Student Trainer. Contact: jnlautze@ncsu.edu

Eli Nance, Undergraduate Intern
Eli is currently pursing a B.S. degree in Horticultural Science at NC State.  Eli is working as an undergraduate intern to develop the Agrifood Gateway weekly newsletters to share international agricultural research journal articles. His future occupational interests include greenhouse production and nursery management. Contact: ehnance@ncsu.edu

Graduate Trainers

Josh HenryHorticultural Science  & Crop Sciencejbhenry2@ncsu.edu
“I have always considered international relations to be a crucial aspect of agriculture that is often overlooked. Among all countries and cultures, the need for agriculture is one of the primary commonalities we all share. It is essential that we work together to learn how to protect our environment and natural resources while optimizing production practices and feeding the world. In the short time since starting as a graduate trainer, I have had the amazing opportunity to work with fellows from China and Ghana. These experiences have given me a better idea of what issues these counties face in agricultural production, ranging from regulation to resource management. This program provides an excellent opportunity to share knowledge and expertise, benefiting all involved. I sincerely appreciate working with our international visitors and gaining personal experience and knowledge regarding other cultures. I am so happy to be a part of this program and am determined to continue developing and cultivating international relationships throughout my career.

Mara Cuebas-IrizarryPlant and Microbial Biology – mfcuebas@ncsu.edu
“I am a PhD student in Microbiology, and previously got a MSc and BSc in Industrial Microbiology from University of Puerto Rico. One of my goals as a “Latina” is to be an active listener to our “latinx” community members’ ideas and concerns in order to develop research goals. Being able to work as a trainer with groups of Venezuela, Ecuador, Perú and Ghana, has given me an opportunity to learn about other cultures, and problems that they are facing in agriculture. I feel that I am actively learning about new topics natural resources, food systems and sustainability.  This has been a great opportunity to grow as a scientist and educator.”

Janel MartinCrop and Soil Sciences – jlmart17@ncsu.edu
“I am a first year PhD student in Soil Science in the College of Agriculture and Life Science. I have a M.S. in Agricultural Science and a B.S in Sustainable Agriculture and Food Systems from the University of New Hampshire. I am deeply committed to the working toward a more sustainable and equitable food system. I am a classically trained chef and prior to returning to school I worked in the hospitality industry for 20 years. As owner and operator of the Wakefield Inn, I was an active member of the New Hampshire Sustainable Lodging and Restaurant Association, and due to the changes I made in reducing the environmental impact of the 200 year old structure and the daily operations, my establishment earned the highest level of sustainability as an Environmental Champion. I believe in making an impact by being part of the conversation, whether that be to advocate for a change in our food system or to help create professional development training that more inclusive, robust and pertinent to the needs of today’s graduate students regardless of the career path. I am honored to be part of the Council, and hope that my industry, business, and community service skill can add to the conversation.”

Raymond Garcia Rodriguez – Entomology and Plant Pathology – rogarcar@ncsu.edu

Jonathan Kinczyk Horticultural Science –jpkinczy@ncsu.edu

Laura Kraft Entomology and Plant Pathology –ljkraft@ncsu.edu


Past Staff and Graduate Trainers

Past Staff

Katie Dungan

Sydney Robling 

Mackenah Simmons


Nat Mansfield


Emily KennedyEmily Kennedy


Chelsea GarrisonChelsea Garrison


Marisol MataMarisol Mata


James FreemanJames Freeman


Past Graduate Trainers

Manal AskarManal Askar

Shannon BannerShannon Banner


Amarilys D. Irizarry


Mahmoud ShehataMahmoud Shehata


Hande UlusHande Ulus

Redife A. UcarRedife A. Ucar


Seyit YuzuakSeyit Yuzuak


Emily KennedyEmily Kennedy


Kelsey Hample

Amanda Clayton


Marcus Reason


Olivia Pearson


Mike Jones

Chelsea GarrisonChelsea Garrison


Luis Artioli


FemiAdioFemi Adio


Thiago Marino


Chen Jiang


Travis Hootman

Contact Us

Campus Box 7642
13 Ricks Hall
1 Lampe Drive
Raleigh, NC 27695
Phone: 919-515-1240
Email: cals_international@ncsu.edu