Meet the VACorps Team.

Sean Walpole

Finance & Faculty Programming

Sean Walpole graduated from the University of Cape Town in 2002 with a Bachelor of Social Science in Philosophy, Politics, and Economics. Sean is a South African with extensive experience working with international students and university professors and describes his position at the VACorps as his dream job. He has a passion for travel and an insatiable desire for exploration. Since 2001, Sean has organized and led trips to Mozambique, Namibia, Botswana, Zimbabwe and along the Garden Route in South Africa. He provides all logistical support for university faculty-led programs in South Africa facilitated by VACorps. In his spare time, Sean has also taught more than 300 people to SCUBA dive! He is one of the most enthusiastic and hard-working individuals you will ever meet!

Oliver Hagan

Director of Admissions & Partnerships

Oliver is a proud graduate of the University of Oregon School of Journalism and Communication (’05). He fell in love with South Africa in 2003 while an exchange student at the University of Cape Town and later returned to the country in 2005 to work as a PADI SCUBA instructor after failing to find a job as a magazine editor in New York City. This early professional setback allowed him to return to South Africa and eventually discover his dream career within the field of international education. When not engaged in VACorps affairs, Oliver can be found hiking, mountain biking, trail running, training for triathlons or surfing one of Cape Town’s many amazing waves.

Thomas Hill

Admissions Team

Thomas Hill graduated from the University of Alaska Anchorage in the spring of 2013 with a Bachelor of Science in Kinesiology and a minor in Athletic Training. Originally from the city of Thunder Bay in Canada, Thomas first came through the program as an intern in the fall of 2012 working as a pediatric physiotherapist at local school in Belville. After completing his internship he decided to pursue other interests and now has the privilege of heading the applications team here at VAC. As an ardent traveler and adventurer, Thomas brings both passion and knowledge to interns as someone with great insight of both the program and the city. When he’s not out pursuing his next adventure or indulging in the many spoils Cape Town has to offer, he can be found surfing, scuba diving, on his bikes, or running with our local club. He is a great source for interns unsure of what to expect in Cape Town, and will communicate with you every step of the way to assure your best possible stay here in the Mother City. If you ever need to get in touch, be sure to contact him at thomas@vacorps.com

Athena Lamberis

Placements & Media Coordinator

Athena Lamberis, also known as Tina, was born in the multicultural town of Evanston, IL, USA with a passion for education and travel. She first touched down in South Africa in 2005, during a semester exchange at University of Kwa-Zulu/Natal in Durban, where she continued her studies in Education, Socio-linguistics, and Ethnographic Studies. She has lived, worked and studied in over twelve countries around the world before graduating from Michigan State University. Cape Town has been home since 2008, where her love for cross-cultural experiences, natural beauty and the search for the next best meal collides. She has a wealth of knowledge to connect you to adventures that align with your personal interests and can answer any of your questions about living, studying and working internationally.

Loyiso Jaji

Placements Coordinator & Local Outreach

Loyiso is the only true “Capetionian” on our team, having spent his entire life living in the majestic city of Cape Town. He has a professional background in sales and marketing and loves working with people. Interns will get to know him for his friendly nature and famous smile. Outside of his work at VACorps, Loyiso is a popular DJ who goes by the name, DJ Lloyd. When he gets the dance floor moving, he is at his happiest!

Kuselwa Webhu

Program Assistant

Kuselwa, also known as Kous Kous or Kusie is notorious for her laughter and smiles, which in turn makes everyone around her feel happy! She loves music and dancing and spending time on the beach in summer. Kuselwa has been making friends with VACorps interns for years while working at FOREX and for the Mama’s Kitchen meal plan — but now she’s officially on the VACorps staff as a program assistant. She enjoys showing interns around Cape Town and explaining cultural differences and Xhosa phrases. Kuselwa is originally from Idutywa in the Eastern Cape province but has been living in Cape Town for many many years.
Carmen Kingwill VACorps

Carmen Kingwill

Program Coordinator

Carmen Kingwill, better known as Carms, is a born and bred adventure-loving Saffa (South African). She Au-Paired in America for a year, has travelled and been a Teen Counsellor at an Adventure Camp in Europe to children from 27 countries. Carmen therefore has an understanding of various cultures and what it is like to visit a foreign country.

She studied Educational and Sport Psychology in the USA, did an Honours Degree in Sport Science with majors in Child Development and Psychology and studied Education and Business Project Management. Carmen has a passion for serving and connecting with people and loves the outdoor and adventure sports. She enjoys organizing events such as hikes, cycles, beach days, Boardgames and movie nights or fundraisers for local charities. She worked at an orphan village in rural KZN and in 2014 moved to Cape Town to start working with local businesses and organisations and was involved in helping with upliftment and training in the townships.

Carmen is passionate about South Africa and loves exploring and being involved in different sporting, cultural and religious events in Cape Town. She has built an extensive network in South Africa, but specifically in Cape Town, and therefore she will be a valuable asset to you as you embark on your journey in South Africa.

Nomakhawuta Moshani

Xhosa Language Instructor

Nomakhawuta or Noma for short is originally from the Eastern Cape of South African in Cofimvaba. She has an honours degree in psychology from UCT, a post-graduate certificate in education (PGCE) and is currently doing her second honours specializing in educational psychology at UWC. Noma has been fond of the Xhosa language since primary school and took it as one of her subjects at university. She has been teaching Xhosa for more than five years to non-native speakers and finds it very rewarding as the students from different backgrounds inquire about certain rules, which in turn keep her on her toes and constantly learning as well. When Noma is not teaching or studying, she is thinking about traveling and what new cultures she can learn about!

Dana Alloy

Program Admissions

Dana graduated from Vanderbilt University in the spring of 2016 with a Bachelor of Science in Human and Organizational Development and International Development. Originally from outside of Washington D.C., Dana fell in love with South Africa while working at a township farming cooperative as a VACorps intern. After such an incredible experience, she was inspired to assist in growing the program so others could enjoy the same opportunity. When Dana is not expanding VACorps outreach, she can be found on the trail, at the farmers market, or trying out all of the best coffee shops in town. 

Jon Wilson

Safety Officer

Native to Cape Town, Jon was involved with VACorps back when the program first started as director of local support & outreach. He then went on to work with the police department where he served almost 10 years of service. At the moment, he’s involved in a tech company and now our VACorps after-hours safety officer. When he’s not helping others, he can be found scuba diving and spending time outside with his dog.