Faculty and Academic Leadership

ALU’s faculty brings a collective wealth of diverse professional experiences, interests, and cultures to facilitate learning and growth in every student to develop the next generation of African and global leaders.

Academic Leadership


Gaidi Faraj

Dean, ALU Rwanda

Dr. Gaidi Faraj brings a rich blend of experience in education and private sector business on the African continent. Dr. Faraj has over 10 years of senior level experience of managing large scale projects and navigating regulatory frameworks in Tanzania and broader East Africa. Dr. Faraj holds a PhD from the University of California at Berkeley and a Master’s degree in Teaching from Troy State University in Montgomery, Alabama. He is currently a research fellow at Harvard University and was a 2017 UMASS Amherst W.E.B. DuBois fellow.

Laurel Staab

Director of Learning and Pedagogy

Laurel first joined ALU as the Faculty Development Lead on the Mauritius campus, where she helped fast track faculty skill development, and designed and implemented a full 10-week English immersion curriculum.

Prior to ALU, she studied at Stanford University in the United States, where her research focused on distribution of school resources and academic achievement across socioeconomic status in Cuba and the Dominican Republic. She’s also taught history in the Rio Grande Valley through Teach for America. Her undergraduate research at Vassar College focused on the role of women’s social movements during and after the Sandinista government in Nicaragua.

Dr. Fay Hodza

Academic Director

Dr. Fay Hodza is a transformative higher education leader and educator who joins ALU with over twenty years of academic experience.

He is a human and community development expert with research interests in gender and sexuality, systemic community engagement, higher education, drug policy reform, human security, and sustainable development in Southern Africa. He also has interests in the political economy of the oil and gas industry in the SADC region. Fay believes that deeper regional socio-political and economic integration is inextricably linked to sustainable peace, stability and the overall development of the SADC region and the African continent at large.


Yovin Poorun

Yovin Poorun is currently Faculty of Computer Science Department at African Leadership University in Mauritius. He was in the IT industry for over 14 years before joining ALU. Yovin is very passionate about Cloud and Big Data and has deep interest to explore Artificial Intelligence.