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Why I Became A
Surge Fellow




Disclaimer: Our intended audience for our virtual gatherings are African-American and Latinx leaders in the Las Vegas education and youth-serving space.


Session 1 & Opening Retreat

May 2-4, 2024

Session 2:

May 24, 2024

Session 3: Mid Retreat

June 27-29, 2024

Session 4

July 26, 2024

Session 5:

August 23, 2024

Session 6: Closing Retreat and Graduation

September 26-28, 2024

The fellowship cohort participates in monthly full-day sessions: 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM (virtual sessions) and 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM (in-person sessions). Fellows are expected to attend all retreats and monthly sessions.


  • Las Vegas-based African-American or Latinx leader
  • Bachelor’s degree (minimum)
  • Minimum of six years of work experience
  • Employed in education or youth-serving role (district, charter, public policy, philanthropy or advocacy/non profit) at the initiation of and for the duration of the fellowship
  • Passion for positively impacting the lives of young people and their communities


Sponsoring organizations are expected to pay a tuition of $2,500 per fellow for the six month program. Limited scholarships are available for accepted candidates with financial needs.


  • Completed application, including a résumé and responses to four essay questions
  • Two recommendation surveys: one must be from current supervisor
  • Memorandum of Understanding signed by applicant and employer

Surge Fellows leave this experience having enhanced their competency in both technical and adaptive leadership skills, including relationship management, problem-solving, negotiation, conflict resolution, communication, anti-racist design, and project planning, management and execution. Surge Fellows also gain a deeper understanding of the sociopolitical and economic context, history and structure of public education. And, importantly, Surge Fellows rediscover themselves, their power and their dreams, and become a part of a community of leaders who see, support and affirm each other.

Las Vegas Academy Leadership

Executive Director
Andrea Black Evans
Andrea Black Evans
Executive Director
Andrea is a former school principal of a high-performing elementary school in the city of Chicago. Andrea worked to create a strong instructional environment that supported the growth of a Golden Apple Award winner. Andrea worked to create a strong instructional environment that supported the growth of a Golden Apple Award winner. Her career began in Atlanta, GA, as a Teach for America corps member. Her content knowledge, instructional aptitude, leadership dexterity, and commitment to excellence for all scholars, regardless of perceived deficits, quickly led her to aspirations beyond the classroom. Andrea values learning and professional growth, and sought our personal learning opportunities to continue to grow via fellowships with the Surge Institute, Cambiar, and Accelerate Institute. Her leadership mantra is, “If you base your decisions on what’s best for kids, you will never have to question your decision.”
Program Director
Susan Garcia Jones
Susan Garcia Jones
Program Director
Susan Garcia Jones (she/they) is the Academy Program Director at Surge Institute. Her passion for education equity developed when she was an undergrad at Dartmouth College. The experience of going from a majority Latinx community to an Ivy League in New Hampshire made them realize the deep structural inequities in their own education. This experience led her to education and justice work. Susan has spent 10 years working in various educational settings from supporting after-school programs at the Boys & Girls Club in her hometown of Oxnard to most recently leading Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion initiatives at KIPP Northern California. Along with a passion for K-12 education, they are a lifelong learner, recently earning their MA from the Graduate Theological Union. Their research focuses on how Black sci-fi literature offers radical lessons for dreaming justice movement work.
National Operations Coordinator
Kevin Oneale
Kevin Oneale
National Operations Coordinator
Kevin graduated from Baruch College at the City University of New York in 2020, earning his Bachelor of Arts in Psychology. Born in Canada and raised in St.Lucia and the United States, he has enrolled in 11 schools across two countries. The constant moving equipped Kevin with the ability to adapt quickly sharpened his interpersonal and communication skills and allowed him to experience education in multiple cities and countries. Kevin enjoys coaching and playing in table tennis tournaments in his free time. His love for the game came about when a non-profit organization donated three tables to his middle school, where he went on to lead his team to second place in the 2012 NYC middle school championships. It wasn’t until Kevin’s sophomore year in college that he realized the impact the donation had on his life. He realized that having access to those tables led to travel, network, and exposure that he would have never even dreamt of having. This realization set Kevin on a mission to help in the effort to provide students of color access and exposure to opportunities, networks, and activities that they’ve been deprived of.

If you have specific questions, contact Surge at