Meet the GoAbroad
Meaningful Travel Insiders

GoAbroad’s Meaningful Travel Insiders (MTIs) are THE go-to experts on all things meaningful travel. We’ve vetted and developed this team of stellar writers to provide thorough, relevant, authoritative, and expert knowledge to our community of travelers. Each author brings a wealth of international experience to the table to help future adventurers travel as thoughtfully and intentionally as possible.

Dominic James Fusco

Dominic is from California and has spent much of his young adulthood traveling through Europe and Asia. He has spent several months each living in India, where he studied abroad, and the Philippines, where he worked as a content intern for GoAbroad. These days he can probably be found in San Francisco, Los Angeles, or New York City.

Julia Zaremba

Julia is an avid traveler, lifelong artist, theater geek, interior designer, future author, and occasional teacher. Originally from Germany, she was raised and started her university studies in Texas, before moving to Italy for her first formal teaching experience. Since then, she has traveled throughout Europe and the Americas, constantly on the look-out for the next adventure. Julia has a habit of getting stuck in love-and-hate relationships with various countries…but love conquers all.

Steph Dyson

Steph is a literature graduate and former high school English teacher from the UK who left her classroom in July 2014 to become a full-time writer and volunteer. Passionate about education and how it can empower young people, she’s worked with various education NGOs and charities in South America. A cheese addict and Bolivian television personality (well, almost), she’s a lover of the great outdoors and never says no to an adventure.

Kerianne Baylor

Kerianne Baylor is a curious world wanderer and a lover of languages, journaling, and random dancing. Studying abroad in Spain for a year wasn't enough, so she set her sights on South America. After teaching English on the Colombian coast, she headed to an equally-as-hot coastal city in Brazil to do the same. You'll find her scoping out ice cream spots, checking out yet another Brazilian beach, and snapping tons of pics along the way.

Jennifer Bangoura

Jennifer plans her adventures from her bungalow in Maryland where she lives with her sweet family. From floating down the Niger river in Mali on a passenger steamer to watching the sunrise on a rooftop in Morocco, she’s passionate about travel to Francophone Africa and appreciates the tender moments that traveling abroad has to offer. Her favorite artists are Yuna and Stromae, and her dream is to write a book while traveling the Trans-Siberian Railway!

Mary Ellen Dingley

Mary Ellen just finished her Master’s degree in Anthropology and Development Management at the London School of Economics. She first knew she wanted to travel the world when she was 8 years old and picked up a copy of National Geographic. She has since worked, studied and volunteered in five different countries, and currently volunteers helping to resettle refugees in the United States.

Suzanne Bhagan

Suzanne is a freelance travel writer and international educator. Although originally from Trinidad and Tobago, she first caught the travel bug when she studied abroad in the UK. Since then, she’s interned in the US, taught English to high school students in Japan and traveled to 19 countries. When she’s not working, she loves hiking, going to the beach, writing short stories and swapping recipes with other travelers.

Laura Jelich

A proud Wisconsin-native, Laura has been calling the mountains of Colorado home since 2014. She graduated from the University of Wisconsin La Crosse in 2013 with a Communication major and minors in Nutrition and Psychology. Laura has volunteer abroad in Costa Rica, interned abroad in Germany, and spent time exploring various Central American and European destinations. In addition to writing for GoAbroad, she is currently tending bar and fostering shelter dogs while figuring out her next endeavor.

Danielle DeSimone

Danielle graduated from the University of Mary Washington with degrees in English: Creative Writing and Italian. She lived in southern Italy for five years and has so far traveled to fifteen countries, in addition to studying abroad in Bath, England and Bologna, Italy. Next up: Iceland! Danielle is currently the Social Media Manager & Assistant Editor at the National Italian American Foundation (NIAF), where she gets to combine her loves of writing, Instagram, and pasta.

Rebecca Murphy

Rebecca’s desire to experience the world began as a young child during her first viewing of The Sound of Music. Four languages, 17 countries, and two misadventures to Maria’s Meadow later, Rebecca now fills her time writing about and marketing amazing places all over the world. Her travel experiences include studying abroad in Austria and Argentina, as well as backpacking Europe. When not talking up meaningful travel, she can be found playing the piccolo, enjoying the great outdoors of her Vermont home, and planning theme parties.

Niki Kraska

After intermittent volunteer stints in South Africa, Guatemala, and India, Niki decided to quit her job in the U.S. to pursue a life of full time international volunteering and writing. She uses her experience working in non-profits to volunteer wherever her heart leads her and plans to pursue an international master’s program to further her impact, because, Ubuntu.

Joe Santini

Joe emits a distinct enthusiasm that echoes across borders. Having recently graduated from Colorado State University with a bachelor’s in business marketing, Joe spent much of his undergraduate career pursuing a worldly perspective, whether that was studying abroad in Prague, mentoring exchange students, or co-founding CSU’s first international business organization. Joe aspires to learn how to surf, fight crime, and find the world’s best milkshake.

Mariel Tavakoli

Mariel is a graduate of the College of William and Mary where she studied public policy and sociology. She fell in love with meaningful travel as a study abroad student in the Czech Republic, where she returned as a Fulbright English Teaching Assistant after graduation. Mariel is dedicated to all things international exchange and spends her free time learning languages and always planning her next trip.

Previous Contributors

These all-stars will always be a part of the GoAbroad writing family!

Char Stoever

Char is an introverted lover of dragon fruit juice. She loves siting with Nicaraguan children on the side of the street while patiently breaking down North American stereotypes. With a short haircut and watermelon shaped earrings, she is passionate about mental health and the rewards that come with vulnerable travel. Not only does she write for 5 different blogs, she also teaches art and English classes in the mountains of Nicaragua.

Joe Baur

Joe Baur is a travel writer, filmmaker and podcaster who loves good beer, long bike rides and getting lost in a new city. When he's able to sit still for more than a week, his videos and editorial work have been featured in a variety of domestic and international publications. You can follow him at and @BaurJoe.

Julia Kitlinski Hong

Julia recently graduated with a Master’s in Intercultural Relations from Lesley University in Boston and moved back to her beloved Bay Area. During college, she fell in love with long term travel after spending a semester in Krakow, Poland. She has also spent time in Izmir, Turkey, teaching English and eating her weight in Turkish breakfasts. She prefers to travel through taste, learning about a country’s culture through its culinary highlights.

Christine Williams

After graduating from UC Santa Barbara with a degree in Global Studies, all this California girl wanted to do was travel! So she booked a one-way ticket to Mexico and has been hooked ever since. She's traveled to 6 of the 7 continents (coming for ya Antarctica!) and has worked in nonprofits around the world while getting her masters in International Development.