New York University Skip to Content Skip to Search Skip to Navigation Skip to Sub Navigation

Global Student Leadership Summit

Noura Alturki

Noura S. Alturki

Butheina Kazim

Butheina Kazim

Kate Otto

Kate Otto

 David Moinina Sengeh

David Moinina Sengeh

Melody C. Barnes

Melody C. Barnes

Organized in collaboration with the NYU Abu Dhabi Institute, "Leadership across Boundaries," the public event of the Global Student Leadership Summit, brought together a panel of changemakers from across the globe to discuss their work and leadership across contexts.

The Summit was sponsored by NYU Abu Dhabi and organized in partnership with the Student Life in the GNU Committee, the NYU Leadership Initiative, and the Division of Student Affairs.

The NYU Leadership Initiative would like to offer special thanks to the Ford Foundation, HashtagNYU and the NYU Abu Dhabi Institute for their support of this event.


Noura S. Alturk

Noura S. Alturki leads Human Resources and Corporate Social Responsibility for Nesma Holding, a privately owned Saudi Arabian company that maintains a varied business portfolio across multiple sectors in Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Egypt and Turkey. She is a board member of several Nesma companies in Saudi Arabia and Turkey. Additionally, she oversees the Nesma Training Center in Jeddah, a nonprofit employability and lifelong learning center that offers training, networking and career guidance for the community.

Ms. Alturki is a member of the Saudi delegation of employers to the International Labor Organization, part of the United Nations system, where she has participated in discussions on gender equality at the heart of decent work, rights for domestic workers and green jobs. In 2012 at the 101st International Labor Conference, she negotiated on behalf of international employers on discussions related to youth unemployment.

Prior to joining Nesma, Ms. Alturki worked at the Jeddah Chamber of Commerce and Industry, where she headed research and development for Al-Sayedah Khadijah Bint Khuwailid Businesswomen Center. She then worked as a consultant with the management consulting firm Monitor Group, based in their Dubai and Riyadh offices.

She is co-author of “Businesswomen in Saudi Arabia: Characteristics, Challenges, and Aspirations in a Regional Context,” a joint publication in 2010 between Monitor Group and Al-Sayedah Khadijah Bint Khuwailid Businesswomen Center.

Ms. Alturki holds a BA in Environmental Studies from Brown University and a Master’s of Science in Nature, Society, and Environmental Policy from the University of Oxford. From January to May 2009, she was a Research Fellow for the Women, Religion, and Globalization Project at Yale University. She lives in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.

Butheina Kazim

Butheina Kazim is a Fulbright Scholar of Media, Culture and Communication at New York University in New York City. Prior to pursuing her graduate studies, Ms. Kazim was the Strategy and Business Development Manager for Dubai Media Incorporated, the largest media conglomerate in the MENA region. In 2010, she was the recipient of the Women in Leadership award for the Leading Woman in the Public Sector category.

Ms. Kazim is the Producer of the award-winning documentary film Letters to Palestine, which premiered at the Dubai International Film Festival, received a Special Jury Award at Abu Dhabi Film Festival and screened in Palestine, Spain and Argentina. Ms. Kazim also worked on a series for Al Jazeera Documentary Channel called Teenagers in the Arab World. She was a juror for the iEmmys Asia & Africa competition and a Curator for ADFF@ThePavilion, an independent films festival at the Pavilion in Dubai and was on Abu Dhabi Film Festival’s film selection committee.

In 2012, Ms. Kazim launched Green Map UAE, the UAE chapter of New York-based Green Map System, an interactive web platform mapping sustainable and conscious living establishments all over the world.

She is a regular commentator on issues of media, culture and communication and co-hosted a radio talk show Dubai Tonight. Her commentary has been published in regional media including Harper’s Bazaar Middle East, The National, MBC, Variety, Al Jazeera, Gulf News, Dubai Explorer, Dubai TV, the Hollywood Reporter, Al Khaleej and Arabian Business. Ms. Kazim was an executive committee member for Dubai Debates now called Munadhara, the UAE ambassador for A Nationless World, and has been profiled in documentary films about women in the Arab world. Her speaking activities include TEDxDubaiWomen, Insight Dubai, Bidoun’s The Big Idea at Art Dubai and representing the UAE at the European Producers Club at the 2011 Berlinale in Berlin, Germany.

Ms. Kazim holds an Honors Bachelors of Design York University and Sheridan College joint program in Toronto, Canada, and she is a recipient of the Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid EDAAD Scholarship. Ms. Kazim blogs at, tweets @butheina and is currently building an online platform for Palestinian cultural production and art; track its progress at

Kate Otto

Kate Otto is a global health consultant to international development institutions, including the World Bank and USAID, and grassroots organizations in Indonesia, Ethiopia, Ghana, Tanzania, South Africa, Mozambique and Haiti. She designs, deploys, and researches innovative mobile phone-based technologies to improve health service delivery in areas of HIV/AIDS care, maternal and child health and nutrition.

Ms. Otto is also the author of Everyday Ambassador: Creating Connections that Last in a Digitally Distracted World, a 21st-century guide to crossing borders, barriers and comfort zones—and making a positive difference, no matter your background or experience. She writes for The Huffington Post, Christian Science Monitor and on her website,

Ms. Otto graduated from NYU with a BA in International Relations (2008) and an MPA in Health Policy and Management (2009), and served as NYU Student Commencement Speaker in 2009. She is a proud member of many public service and social change communities including the Reynolds Program in Social Entrepreneurship, the Truman Scholarship Program, the Academy of Achievement and the Luce Scholars Program.

David Moinina Sengeh

David Moinina Sengeh is a doctoral student at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Media Lab, and a researcher in the Lab’s Biomechatronics group. Mr. Sengeh, originally from Sierra Leone, has been working on technology to improve prosthetic limbs for amputees around the world and designing the next generation of wearable mechanical interfaces.

He is the president and co-founder of Global Minimum Inc. (GMin), an international NGO that has distributed over 15,000 mosquito nets in Sierra Leone. GMin’s main project is a youth mentorship program called Innovate Salone, which is designed to foster innovation and learning through making, with a focus on high school students in Sierra Leone. The youth work in teams to create new ideas for “do-it-yourself” projects related to health, agriculture, crafts, and entertainment in their communities. The project has since expanded to Kenya and Cape Town in 2013.


The Global Student Leadership Summit is pleased to congratulate the following students who were selected to participate in the inaugural Summit in Abu Dhabi:

  • Edward Bean, Steinhardt School of Culture, Education, and Human Development
  • Martina Belloni, College of Arts and Science
  • Alana Bowers, Tisch School of the Arts
  • Victoria Cana, Steinhardt School of Culture, Education, and Human Development
  • Joal Chen, College of Arts and Science
  • Aarati Cohly, Liberal Studies
  • Hannah Dehradunwala, Liberal Studies
  • Sarah Dittmore, Gallatin School of Individualized Study
  • Anna Rosa Eckert, NYU Abu Dhabi
  • Catalina Escalona, Liberal Studies
  • Gabriela Garcia, Gallatin School of Individualized Study
  • Chloe Gbai, Gallatin School of Individualized Study
  • Benjamin Goh, College of Arts and Science
  • Alexandra Heffern, Liberal Studies
  • Anusha Jayaram, College of Arts and Science
  • Hussein Karzoumi, NYU Abu Dhabi
  • Noel Konagai, NYU Shanghai
  • Shirley LaVarco, Liberal Studies
  • Shannon Litke, College of Arts and Science
  • Noelia Mann, Tisch School of the Arts
  • Pilar Mendez, Steinhardt School of Culture, Education, and Human Development
  • Corey Meyer, NYU Abu Dhabi
  • Andy Ng, College of Arts and Science
  • Selbi Nuryyeva, NYU Abu Dhabi
  • Emma Olson, College of Nursing
  • Loretta Owens, Silver School of Social Work
  • Karthik Ramakrishnan, Stern School of Business
  • Arfa Rehman, NYU Abu Dhabi
  • Amanda Setiawan, School of Engineering
  • Austin Taylor, College of Arts and Science
  • Jialing Wang, NYU Shanghai
  • Kevin Wang, School of Engineering
  • Jessica Yang, Stern School of Business
  • Luming Zhu, College of Arts and Science
  • Claudia Zurlini, Gallatin School of Individualized Study

Leadership across Boundaries Panel
Leadership across Boundaries audience
Leadership across Boundaries panelists
Leadership across Boundaries audience
Leadership across Boundaries panelists listen to question from the audience
NYU Footer