Chalkboard

GSD Network ExplaiNed

GSD gear
WHAT
Click the gears for iNfO
WHAT
WHY
WHO
HOW
WHERE
Indian teen teaching other girls
Afghan teens
4a. GSD has turned three illiterate Afghan refugee boys into healthy mentors of the most at-risk youth in Afghanistan; hundreds of formerly incarcerated teens once in the grips of extremism are now joining the GSD team. Once invisible statistics of war, they have challenged their life circumstances, turned the tables on adversity, and secured Nobel Peace Prize nominations in the process.

Who wouldn't be excited to meet them?
Indian teens
4b. GSD has also inspired girls living in one of India's most oppressive urban slums to lead the charge toward a new future. With the support of GSD partner groups, they are defying gender oppression, domestic violence, early marriage, and child labor by not just staying in school, but getting into college! They are now using the multiplier effect to train thousands more vulnerable girls as teachers and mentors.

Girl. Power.

Leadership Training Breakdown

1. GO THROUGH TRAINING
Teens begin by reading one of GSD's training programs— captivating, real-world ADVENTURE STORIES that take readers to influential world places they would likely never reach on their own. These stories introduce them to world-changing teenagers who illuminate complex global issues in a way that textbooks can’t touch. FORUM questions help students peel back layers and understand root causes while they observe, reflect, and explore from new angles. GSD teens develop critical thinking skills needed to better understand the values and motivations of other cultural groups, and, just as importantly, their own.

Forum

Screenshot of forum discussion
Throughout each Dossier adventure, thought-provoking forum discussions give students a chance to post their ideas, and see what other kids are thinking as well. This training in mindful evaluation helps readers step back from the drama, avoid overreaction and judgment, and instead observe, delve, question— and understand why things are the way they are.
2. JOIN THE GSD NETWORK
After completing the training program, qualified teens are invited to become OPERATIVES in the GSD NETWORK— an elite, action-oriented leadership team that breaks down barriers and finds new solutions where everybody wins. Even their MANIFESTO rocks. Through the GSD OPERATIVE APP, kids will get exciting news and updates, opportunities to participate in fun challenges, and help with GSD Missions.

Operatives

Operatives being interviewed on radio
GSD teens are not volunteers, advocates, or fund raisers. They don't blindly follow the media, the status quo, or the herd. While others wait for big organizations and institutions, they get stuff done (GSD— see that?), so we call them Operatives. Elite, innovative, impactful.

Malala may call them for advice.

GSD Network

GSD is an elite network of teens taking real action to make a real difference— even in the midst of the world’s toughest challenges.

GSD headquarters is located in the virtual hayloft— a top-secret site where Operatives receive updated communiques from Dina’s adventures, participate in Missions, and network with other trained Operatives via the GSD Operative App.

GSD Manifesto

From overpopulation, terrorism, and poverty, to gender inequity, ethnic tensions, and war, the world has some serious issues, that we—today’s teenagerswill be dealing with tomorrow. While experts, militaries, and world leaders continue to scramble for political solutions, the media paints a picture that leaves many feeling powerless.

We may be young, but we are not powerless. We have influence. We are not manipulated by the media, and do not blindly follow what society says and does. We are not afraid of the world’s challenges, and don’t need the news sugar-coated. We are brave, curious, and will discover the truth by exploring the world ourselves. We question, we examine, we peel back the layers until we understand why things are the way they are— and while others are talking, analyzing, strategizing, blaming, complaining, or whining, we get stuff done.

We live and lead with clear intention. We break out of the molds that society has assigned us and redefine who we really are. We are more than sports, social media, homework, and texting. We are more than volunteers and fund raisers. We do more than create awareness campaigns, or study foreign policy. We go out into the world and change it. We are explorers, researchers, teachers, and we are the heroes of our own adventure stories. Our lives are filled with drama, action, and heart-racing-mind-numbing craziness.

We refuse to sit on the sidelines. We don’t just read the news we create the news. We follow and collaborate with teens living on the front lines of the world’s crises. We empower them by sharing our time, care, and friendship, and assist in providing tools and resources to help THEM make a difference in their OWN communities. No longer invisible statistics, they show us the world in a human way and inspire us to get stuff done— anywhere, anytime, anyplace, anyhow. They are not our “projects,” they are our partners and we have their backs. Regardless of race, religion, or nationality, they are our brothers and sisters.

We spread truth. We smash stereotypes. We put “passion” in compassion. We help turn victims into heroes. We are part of something meaningful, magical, and larger than ourselves. We can be anything, do anything, and we are not afraid. We were born to do this.

Together, we are operatives of change, and technology is our secret weapon. Through it we have the power to learn, connect, create, and support each other. We are flexible, stealth, tech-savvy, and the status quo doesn’t see us coming.

We aren’t afraid of our ideas—we act on them. We offer sustainable solutions –not charity. We innovate. We help the world, and the world helps us back. We are creative, competitive, and powerful. We are weird, and weird is the new normal.

We are defining our own generation— a generation empowered, a generation revolution. We will do more, be more, than any other generation before us. We are making an impact—not years down the road, but RIGHT NOW. We are making history and will be able to look back and say “I was a part of this.”

We are role models, we make a difference, and we rock.

We get stuff done .

GSD Operative App

Operatives stay in touch with the GSD team via the Operative App. Here, teens will receive updates, opportunities, and assist with GSD missions.
Smartphone
GSD OPPORTUNITY
microphone
Get interviewed on KYMN about last GSD leadership conference
(click to know more)
GSD CHALLENGE
Classroom
Make a classroom presentation about your latest Mission
UPDATES FROM INDIA: Operative Arti recruits more teens to join movement
(click to know more)
Indian Operative Karishma
GSD MISSION
Teen helping make app
Help develop new teaching content for the Afghan Operatives
Operative in newspaper
Operative Olivia enlightens a 6th grade class!
(click to know more)
SEND A SHOUT OUT
GSD MISSION
Teen using tablet
Join a 4-week exchange with an Indian Operative
Afghanistan Operative updateAfghanistan operative update
UPDATES FROM AFGHANISTAN: new Operatives join!
(click to know more)
3. HELP WITH GSD MISSIONS
Operatives are now ready to help Dina with her international Missions. Whether virtually— or occasionally, literally— GSD Operatives are invited to connect and partner with the featured international teens in the training program, creating world-changing exchanges that can alter the course of their collective future. Could anything be more exciting???
Poor Indian kidsSyrian refugees coming off raftBombings in SyriaSyrian refugees sleeping on train tracks

Tomorrow

Bored studentBored student in class
Unfortunately, too many teens are under the false assumption that adults have the answers; believing that governments, militaries, or global organizations will— or can— solve them. Although many teens long to find meaning in their lives and become part of something larger than themselves, too many assume that mere fundraising or service learning is enough. Others remain too disconnected, disengaged, uninformed, or apathetic to recognize that they already have the power to influence their world.

GSD is here to change that.
Dina Fesler and Andy Zweber, GSD Network co-founders
PERSONNEL PROFILE
IMPORTANT
Dina Fesler
Name: Dina Fesler
Gender: Female
Occupation: Co-Founder, GSD
Whereabouts: Globally on the move; GSD virtual HQ
Current Status: Leading global GSD movement
Skills: Dangerously creative; Out-of-the-box thinker; Brilliant communicator/storyteller
Known Associates: Hundreds of teens located worldwide
Remarks: Dina is a creative writer, designer, and armchair-anthropologist who spent decades exploring far-flung locales. During her earlier career as a fashion designer she lived in New York, Hong Kong, Shanghai, and Japan. These days she resides on a Midwestern hobby farm with adopted daughters from China, India, and Ethiopia. Inspired to raise true global citizens, she founded nonprofit Children’s Culture Connection– creating empowering leadership projects impacting children in ten developing countries, as well as a unique cross-cultural curriculum that has entertained and inspired thousands of student readers.

Between globe-trotting gigs she offices out of the hayloft on her farm.
PERSONNEL PROFILE
IMPORTANT
Andy Zweber
Name: Andy Zweber
Gender: Male
Occupation: Co-Founder, GSD
Whereabouts: Globally on the move; GSD virtual HQ
Current Status: Leading global GSD movement
Skills: Tech guru; Strategic planner; Travelling tactician; Cultural chameleon (blends into any environment like a local)
Known Associates: Hundreds of teens located worldwide
Remarks: Andy is an analyst, sports fanatic, avid debater, and political junkie who graduated from Carleton College with a degree in political science. Previously working with nonprofit Children’s Culture Connection catapulted him into the eye of the storm, and introduced him to youth growing up amidst some of the world’s most volatile political backdrops. Beyond his training, he discovered that sustainable solutions place “people” above “policies.”

While everyone waits for traditional institutions to fix the world's problems with top-down strategies, Andy trains GSD teens to solve problems from the bottom-up.

He will happily engage in lively debate with any interested parties.
Children's Culture Connection
American middle school classroom
Children’s Culture Connection was a nonprofit organization that created engaging cross-cultural curricula for middle and high schools in 35 U.S. states and 15 countries worldwide.
How it works:
GSD gears
Afghan teens
4a. GSD has turned three illiterate Afghan refugee boys into healthy mentors of the most at-risk youth in Afghanistan; hundreds of formerly incarcerated teens once in the grips of extremism are now joining the GSD team. Once invisible statistics of war, they have challenged their life circumstances, turned the tables on adversity, and secured Nobel Peace Prize nominations in the process.

Who wouldn't be excited to meet them?
Indian teens
4b. GSD has also inspired girls living in one of India's most oppressive urban slums to lead the charge toward a new future. With the support of GSD partner groups, they are defying gender oppression, domestic violence, early marriage, and child labor by not just staying in school, but getting into college! They are now using the multiplier effect to train thousands more vulnerable girls as teachers and mentors.

Girl. Power.

Documents

Dina with Afghan teensDina with Afghan teens
Developing these adventures has involved years of exhaustive groundwork, stealth interaction, tremendous personal risk, and the support of many talented people– but it was worth it. Through these stories, teens discover that innovative ideas can come from the most unlikely sources, and that the potential for creating world change truly lies within each of them. And by taking a lighter, more personal approach to heavy issues, students realize that solving big problems isn’t just in the domain of “experts.” Sometimes teens can make an impact that others simply can’t.

Operatives

American teens radio interview
GSD teens are not volunteers, advocates, or fund raisers. They don't blindly follow the media, the status quo, or the herd. While others wait for big organizations and institutions, they get stuff done (GSD– see that?), so we call them Operatives. Elite, innovative, impactful.

Malala may call them for advice.

GSD Network

GSD is an elite network of teens taking real action to make a real difference— even in the midst of the world’s toughest challenges.

GSD headquarters is located in the virtual hayloft— a top-secret site where Operatives receive updated communiques from Dina’s adventures, participate in Missions, and network with other trained Operatives via the GSD Operative App (below).
Smartphone
GSD OPPORTUNITY
microphone
Get interviewed on KFAI Radio about your latest Mission
(click to know more)
GSD CHALLENGE
Classroom
Make a classroom presentation about your latest Mission
(click to know more)
UPDATES FROM INDIA:
Operative Karishma brings program to another slum
(click to know more)
Indian Operative Karishma
GSD MISSION
Classroom
Help develop new teaching content for the Afghan Operatives
(click to know more)
Operative in newspaper
GSD IN THE NEWS:
Operative Olivia elightens a 6th grade class!
(click to know more)
SEND A SHOUT OUT
Afghanistan Operative updateAfghanistan operative update
UPDATES FROM AFGHANISTAN:
Operative Sardar Agha expands the team
(click to know more)
GSD MISSION
Classroom
Join a 4-week virtual exchange with an Indian Operative
(click to know more)

Training Program

Middle school class
GSD training programs introduce teens to vital global issues by virtually catapulting them directly into the epicenter of action. Real-world adventure stories, videos, and photos featuring international teens overcoming incredible obstacles offer your students an immersion into the global challenges facing their generation.

GSD Operative App

Check out screenshots from the app below:
Smartphone
GSD OPPORTUNITY
microphone
Get interviewed on KYMN about last GSD conference
(click to know more)
GSD CHALLENGE
Classroom
Make a classroom presentation about your latest Mission
UPDATES FROM INDIA: Operative Arti recruits more teens to join movement
(click to know more)
Indian Operative Karishma
GSD MISSION
Teen helping make app
Help develop new teaching content for the Afghan Operatives
Operative in newspaper
Operative Olivia enlightens a 6th grade class!
(click to know more)
SEND A SHOUT OUT
GSD MISSION
Teen using tablet
Join a 4-week exchange with an Indian Operative
Afghanistan Operative updateAfghanistan operative update
UPDATES FROM AFGHANISTAN: new Operatives join!
(click to know more)
Click the bolded words for additional information

What is GSD?

Why GSD?

Who is behind GSD?

How?

Where

GSD is a revolutionary METHODOLOGY and LEADERSHIP TRAINING that is creating an elite network of global problem solvers. Bypassing academics, officials, and “experts,” we prefer to work with those with the greatest power to change the world— teenagers. To prepare them for action, they must first go through our exclusive (but fun!) GSD training.
Our planet is facing overwhelming social problems that are leaving even experts confounded.

From ISIS and terrorism to religious/cultural polarization and war, gender oppression and mutilation to extreme poverty, overpopulation to slavery, and trafficking, today’s youth will  be facing these problems on an even larger scale TOMORROW.
GSD (Global Student Dynamic) was founded in 2015 by DINA FESLER and ANDY ZWEBER, former executives of CHILDREN'S CULTURE CONNECTION.

Who is GSD for?

Teens who want to make a massive, positive impact on the world, as well as parents and TEACHERS who want to prepare them to do it.
How does GSD work? Check out the three-step breakdown:

1. Dina heads off on an exciting world adventure and meets up with some seriously cool kids with vastly untapped potential. Using the GSD METHODOLOGY, she helps them discover how their struggles are actually their assets. Featured teens transform from victims into heroes until they become the new status quo tipping point in their communities. Dina DOCUMENTS their awe-inspiring adventures in a story that students can read in their classroom or on their own. These stories are where GSD's training programs begin.

2. After students finish reading one of the stories, those who want to help Dina and get involved in future GSD adventures can apply to become OPERATIVES in the GSD NETWORK.

3. Operatives work with the GSD team (via the GSD Operative App), participate in vital GSD Missions, and make the world a better place for their generation.
Real-world change done virtually.

GSD TRAINING begins as soon as teens download one of the GSD training programs and start reading. Whether they complete this training in their school or independently, teens are then encouraged to apply to become Operatives.

Operatives meet virtually at the GSD Headquarters (the VIRTUAL HAYLOFT): a top secret site where Operatives communicate with the GSD team, receive exciting updates, assist with GSD Missions, connect with others, and find other cool stuff to get involved in— all via the GSD Operative App!