We're a team of two educators, Andrea Ferrero & Dyalekt, and one CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™, Pamela Capalad. We travel across the country researching, developing, and sharing lessons, workshops, and professional development that educates and empowers students, teachers, and families.
Co-Founder & CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER®
Pamela Capalad, CFP®AFC® stumbled into financial literacy because she needed a summer job and a place called the money camp was hiring. She found herself teaching week long camps where kids learned how to budget, use credit cards wisely, save their money, start businesses, and invest the stock market.
After three years of teaching scores of kids (and adults!), she was convinced that there was a crippling need for financial literacy education, so she took her Literature degree from UC Santa Barbara and made her way to New York City, where she thought she could get the best insights on how the financial industry really worked.
A decade later, she is still wading through vast amounts of information (and earned her CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ designation and Accredited Financial Counselor® certification) so she can continue to demystify the complex world of finance for Pockets Change kids and for her Brunch & Budget clients.
You can catch her on the internet waves with the Brunch & Budget Podcast.
Co-Founder & Executive Director
Andrea Ferrero became an educator over a decade ago to be part of changing the world. Teaching on the Navajo and Hopi reservation where she grew up, Andrea saw how even the brightest students faltered when money moved from math class to practical application. Looking for tools to address issues of educational equity, Andrea stepped into the world of financial literacy and ed-tech.
She brings over a decade of experience in teaching and learning, curriculum and program development, and community capacity building together to design award winning educational programs and digital products. Andrea holds a teaching credential in PreK-12th grade multiple subjects and two Master’s in Educational Leadership and Curriculum & Instruction with Multicultural Contexts.
Leading Pockets Change, Andrea works with schools, organizations, and businesses to make finance fun through innovative educational approaches and meaningful ed-tech tools. She has served as a delegate to the World Innovation Summit in Qatar, the ASCD Supervision and Curriculum Development Delegation in China, the Multi-Age Learning Institute in New Zealand, and the Mozilla Open Leaders in England. Andrea is also a board member of the California Jump$tart Coalition.
She is always happy to share coffee and a conversation about changing the world through the development of financial capability.
DIRECtor of pedagogy
Brian ‘Dyalekt’ Kushner moved from St. Croix to New York to study acting and law. He also liked to rap. After witnessing civil rights injustices at the law firm he worked for, he dropped both the job and the law classes, pursuing the arts instead. Performances at the Nuyorican led him to Hip Hop Theater, writing plays that have been performed on stages across the world. He didn’t sleep on the rapping either, releasing music and touring internationally. His first album/one man play Square Peg Syndrome helped him get named to the Public Theater’s Emerging Writer’s Group. He has been a mainstay in NYC’s theater and Hip Hop scenes, rocking everywhere from the Bowery Ballroom to the Oregon Shakespeare Festival.
When Dyalekt was invited to present at a workshop for New York SCORES, a soccer and poetry program in Harlem and the Bronx, his perspective on performance changed. Students are much better audience members than bar patrons, and Dyalekt found he had a natural affinity for facilitation. Hip Hopping with students like he did with MCs in a cypher led to better engagement, grades, and overall attitude toward school than the usual class.
After researching Howard Gardner’s Theory of Multiple Intelligences, Dyalekt designed curricula lining up the elements of Hip Hop with each learning style. Through Hip Hop, or rather, by Hip Hopping, students could assess their learning tendencies and use them to their benefit. Furthermore, the community aspects of Hip Hop show students how to be responsible citizens, peer mentors, and advocates for justice. Dyalekt brought this curriculum, along with his album/play back home to St. Croix, rocking with 17 orgs and over 400 students. They produced 2 books of poetry, an album, and a documentary. He also now teaches teachers how to MC in a classroom.
Dyalekt had been an entrepreneur since his teenage days, and tells his students that the only thing that gets him out of his house before 10am is talking to kids, because he would never make it working on a punch-clock schedule. Since the essence of Hip Hop is making something from nothing, Dyalekt has rapped, written, and performed every freelance gig available to his skill set. He ran rap based Lincoln-Douglas debate/battles to teach youths how to prepare and present at a job interview. He linked up with Pockets Change and co-hosts the Brunch & Budget podcast to help people find freedom in expression, understanding, and their finances.
Programs & operations associate
Lizette Daniel is a dedicated professional in the S.T.E.M. career field. Lizette earned her B.S. in Chemistry after completing her degree upon early admission to the University of the Virgin Islands. She is experienced and proficient at developing and executing research, curriculum, and educational program projects. After discovering her natural talent and interest in science education, she earned an Educator’s certificate in numerous states. Lizette’s drive towards effective online learning and curriculum development has intertwined with her passion for fiscal knowledge, leading her to the team here at Pockets Change.
Danyell is the Founder & CEO of Maven Media Management. An affiliate of FMI, Maven Media Management takes pride in thinking outside the box. We strive to promote as well as expose clients far beyond obvious realms. Offering both national and regional press outreach, Maven Media Management will work to grow and expand your reach, ignite interest and educate the public as you ready new initiatives and exciting advancements for your brand. Our goal is to continually work to develop your story and help to elevate your brand and lifestyle.
Marketing & Design
Simone Harvin is the Founder & Lead Creative of SC Creative Group, an Atlanta-based Brand Marketing and Design agency. Experienced in consulting both big brands and small businesses, SCCG develops strategies that align client goals with consumer and influencer interest. We help entrepreneurs and creatives build and scale businesses through well-defined branding, visually engaging design and a comprehensive marketing strategy. When not mastering the art of being an extroverted introvert, you can usually find her enjoying the company of her tribe of equally amazing and inspiring creative friends, or exploring new cultures and cuisines around the world.