Meet the Team

Rohesia Hicks, Founder and Executive Director

Rohesia Hicks serves as an Elder at the Church of the New Covenant, East Orange, NJ. She also serves on the Intercessory Prayer Ministry, Servant Ministry, Hospitality and Fresh Anointing Dance Ministry. She has more than 15 years of experience in program administration and implementation, youth development and organization development.

In August 2014, she joined the staff at Rutgers University—Newark focusing on providing incoming students with 21 century skills and showing the importance of civic engagement with incoming first year college students. Currently, she is a Student Counselor for TRiO Educational Talent Search providing low-income, first generation students 6th-12th grade with academic enrichment and counseling services. She also functions as the Site Director of Cooperman College Scholars program for rising 12th graders. She is the Founder of Visions of Belle, an organization that is devoted to Building and Empowering Lovely Ladies to Excel for girls 14 years old and older. Prior to joining Rutgers University—Newark, she served a Care Manager and Developmental Disability/Mental Illness Liaison at Partnership for Children of Essex (PCE) providing case management services through a Wraparound Model for youth (5-21 years old) with emotional and behavioral challenges.

She has worked nationally, as a facilitator and instructor for the Corporation for National and Community Service, school based, nonprofit and faith-based constituencies in diverse areas of need. She has served as a Behavioral Assistant and Mentor. Training and technical assistance areas of expertise include: Youth Development, Community Development Initiatives, Community and School Collaborations, Organizational & Management Development along with Faith Based Community Initiatives.

Rohesia attended New Jersey City University for undergraduate studies where she received her Bachelor of Arts in Psychology. She also received her Master of Public Administration from Rutgers University—Newark.


Afia Khatun, Director of Programming

Afia Khatun has held several positions working with adolescents in 6th-12th grade with transitioning into high school and college/university. in the pre-college field currently and in the past. Afia Khatun has developed and facilitated workshops regarding healthy relationships, self-awareness, healthy boundaries, and professional development through healthy and positive discussions by connecting young ladies to community based resources that are short/long term.

Tamara Massay-Trotz, Education & Career Liaison

Tamara Massay-Trotz has an extensive background with grant funded programs for disadvantaged youth in the Greater Newark area and currently the Program Coordinator for TRiO Educational Talent Search program at Rutgers University—Newark. Her role is to ensure thousands of low-income, first generation youth (6th-12th grade) in the cities of Orange, East Orange, and Irvington to receive pre-college academic enrichment and counseling. Tamara Massay-Trotz holds a Masters in Public Administration with a concentration in Leadership of Public Organizations from Rutgers University—Newark so that she can improve inner-city communities through the reconstruction of education, as well as increasing the resources made available to the low income families.