Kongite Wessene is Director of Foreign Languages and Cultural Programs at Education Services International (ESI). She is also the founder of and educator in The Amharic Saturday Academy for Ethiopian-American children in North Carolina. In these roles, she focuses on developing instructional methodology and materials for teaching Amharic to children. Prior to founding ESI, she spent over 15 years as a professor of French, Francophone Literature, and Humanities at North Carolina Central University and a professor of French at Meredith College. She did her graduate studies at the University of Maryland at College Park and Howard University. She holds a MA in Intercultural Communications and Sociolinguistics from Howard University. Her research centered on language and identity: A comparative study between Ethiopia and the colonized African countries. She builds bridges and fosters understanding among diverse communities of people as a board member in organizations such as the United Nations Association-USA Triangle Chapter, the Ethiopian Community of North Carolina, the John Chavis Historical Society, and the Society of Ethiopians Established in the Diaspora. She spent over 23 years as an organizer and cultural ambassador of the annual International Festival of Raleigh, where she exhibited Ethiopian culture for over 20,000 attendees each year. She moved from the Washington, DC metropolitan area to Durham, North Carolina in 1989. She is a native of Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.