About Mawi Learning

We Do Great Things for Students.

Mawi Learning:

  • Inspires educators and students with world-class leadership training. Founder Mawi Asgedom has spoken to over 1,000,000 students in 45 U.S. states.
  • Has worked directly with over 1,000 schools worldwide. Any student in Florida can now take Mawi Learning's online leadership class for free, and get full high school credit toward graduation.
  • Has published eight leadership books used in classrooms worldwide and founded Mental Karate, a leadership action system proven to increase student efficacy and achievement.
  • Is led by Mawi Asgedom, a former Ethiopian refugee who has inspired millions through his story and leadership insights.

Mawi has shared his insights on many prominent media including The Oprah Winfrey Show, ESSENCE, and The Chicago Tribune. Contact us to explore a partnership.

Mawi's bestselling memoir, Of Beetles and Angels: A Boy's Remarkable Journey from a Refugee Camp to Harvard, has been read as a one-book, one-community reading selection by hundreds of schools and communities including the cities of Philadelphia and Green Bay. His teen-success guides, The Code, Win the Inner Battle, and Nothing is Impossible, have also been used in thousands of classrooms. Citing the impact of his work, The Illinois Association of Teachers of English named Mawi the 2006 Illinois Author of the Year.

Our Team

Nancy Ritter
As the Communications Director at Mawi Learning, Nancy Ritter specializes in connecting business partners with opportunities. With a background in retail management and real estate sales, Nancy's focus is to provide each client with prompt, personal attention and the right resources to achieve their goals . Nancy earned her bachelor's degree from DePauw University and sits on the Professional Standards Committee for the Mainstreet Organization of Realtors.



Patrick Donohue Patrick Donohue, Director of Training, brings over 20 years experience as a teacher, administrator and coach to his passion of developing leadership and character in young people.He was an early pioneer bringing character education to schools in Illinois during the 1990s and has mentored and coached hundreds of young people as well as implementing systematic leadership programs in schools. Patrick is a master facilitator who has created and led thousand of hours of training for both students and adults. Patrick lives in Oak Park, IL with his wife Binita and his children Sarina and Shaan.


Carrie Merritt Carrie Merritt, Director of Corporate Partnerships, has over 10 years of experience in brand marketing and market research. She was most recently the Director of Branding at NorthShore University HealthSystem where she oversaw the branding and advertising efforts. Now as the Director of Corporate Sponsorships at Mawi Learning, Carrie has the opportunity to help develop customized sponsorship programs that meet other organization's objectives. Carrie has her BS in Business Economics from Miami University and her MBA from the Kellogg School of Management.


Victor Kore
Victor Kore, Director of Marketing, is a creative specialist based in Chicago who helps organizations, groups and individuals, create sustainable, profitable brands online and in the real world. He is constantly evolving a process and a culture that combine the most powerful aspects of research, design, technology and marketing.





Amanda Hofbauer
Amanda Hofbauer has recently joined our team as our Communication Specialist. She graduated Magna Cum Laude from North Park University with a BA in Communication Arts, a minor in Sociology and a certificate in Conflict Transformation Studies. Amanda has experience working in refugee resettlement, volunteer management, event planning and communication/marketing. She lives with her husband in Chicago, and will soon be pursuing licensure as a Marriage and Family Therapist.



Annie Schmidt
Annie Schmidt, Social Media Specialist, is also the Resource Specialist at the Florida Literacy Coalition. She graduated from DePaul University with a BA in International Studies and Peace Studies. She is currently working on her Certificate of Nonprofit Management from Rollins College. Annie has 6 years experience working with nonprofits and student leaders. Her goal is to utilize social media as a means to create dialogue around social change.




Advisory Board

Ana Dutra, CEO of Korn Ferry Leadership Consulting
Baratunde Thurston, Tech Maven
Michael Boraz, Principal, Lincoln Park High School
Johanna Even, Deputy Director, KIPP Houston
Corey McQuade, Managing Director, Northwestern Mutual
Merrill Mathews - Principal, New Central School
Bill Triant, VP Pearson Education