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Global Guides

Through the Global Guides Program, the Penn Museum offers gallery tours led by immigrants and refugees. In addition to sharing historical information about the artifacts, the guides combine personal stories to interpret objects from their countries of origin.

clay katongo

Clay Katongo

Africa Galleries

Born in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) and a resident there for more than 30 years, Clay Katongois a graduate of the Alliance Theological Seminary in New York. Serving as a pastor, Bible College teacher, conference speaker, and lecturer in the field of World Religions and Christian world missions, his pastoral ministry led him to Pointe Noire, the second largest city in Congo Brazzaville, along with Portugal, Belgium, France, and Canada before he settled in the United States. Acquainted with African traditions and religions, and deeply immersed in his original DRC and Angolan culture, heritage, tradition, and language, he emphasizes immigration and multicultural diversity awareness, along with the willingness to overcome barriers such as language and appearances, to share stories and learn from others.

selemani Sikasabwa

Selemani Sikasabwa

Africa Galleries

Born in a small village called Lweba,located in the territory of Fizi, a province of South Kivu in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Selemani Sikasabwa was forced to leave his home country during the civil war. In 1996, he fled to Tanzania, where he lived for 19 years. During his time in Tanzania, he graduated from high school; joined the Institut Biblique International et Evangelique de Nundu Bible School; and obtained a diploma in the Biblical Studies in 2014. He also worked with the World Vision Tanzania by serving refugees and other surrounding communities. Through this experience, he learned several cultural traditions and histories from the diverse individuals helped through World Vision. Currently, he works with the Nationalities Services Center as a Swahili, French, and Lingala interpreter for newly resettled immigrants in Philadelphia.

abraham sandoval iniguez

Abraham Sandoval Iniguez

Mexico and Central America Gallery

Born in San Martin de Bolanos, Jalisco, a municipality slightly north of Guadalajara, Abraham Sandoval Iniguez spent much of his childhood in this region before moving to San Jose, California. There, he developed his English skills adjacent to Spanish as he was submerged in a Mexican-American community. Maintaining a strong connection to his culture, he later moved to central Pennsylvania and began to establish his professional identity. He began working with activist organizations speaking on behalf of Harrisburg’s Mexican and Central American migrant communities. This newfound passion led him the University of Pennsylvania, where he majors in Politics, Philosophy, and Economics with a concentration in Ethics and the Professions and a minor in American Public Policy. He plans to attend law school to address the injustices plaguing the Mexican migrant communities in the U.S. and the indigenous people of Mexico.

carlos jose perez samano

Carlos José Pérez Sámano

Mexico and Central America Gallery

Bornin Mexico City, Carlos José Pérez Sámanois part of the “Earthquake Generation,” a generation of people living in Mexico known for their resilience and commitment to helping others, as a result ofa 1985 earthquake that caused major destruction and casualties.Carlos began his work in marketing for a transnational company but he exited this job for new opportunity building rural schools in East Africa, where he learned to speak Swahili. After living in Tanzania, he founded Experiex Trips, a social enterprise that changes the way people xperience cultures through immersion trips. Carlos is the Executive Director of the Philadelphia Mexican Global Network,a network of talented Mexicans in diaspora with more than 6,000 members worldwide. An expert storyteller with an M.F.A. in Creative Writing and an M.A. in Publishing, Carlos is the author of four books and a contributor to numerous literary magazines and anthologies. Learn more at perezsamano.com.

celeste diaz

Celeste Diaz

Mexico and Central America Gallery

Celeste Diazand her family traveled back and forth between their native Guatemala and Texas, before permanently settling in Houston in 2001. As a daughter of immigrants, Celeste’s Guatemalan culture was always celebrated and passed down in her home through her family. She has always held an immense pride for her country and a passion for teaching others about her culture. This led her to found Istmo y Vos, a new Central American cultural student group at the University of Pennsylvania, through which she taught others about Central America’s culture, history, and current issues. After graduating from Penn with a degree in Sociology and minor in Urban Education, Celeste decided to stay in Philadelphia and make it her new home. Her education interests led her to the Penn Museum, where she hopes to continue to spread her love for her country and people.

Additional Information

Global Guide Tours are included with museum admission. Available on Fridays at 2:30 pm, the Global Guide Tours also take place on Saturdays and Sundays at 11:00 am and 2:30 pm. A detailed tour schedule is available on our Global Guides page.

Private Global Guides Tours and other group tours are available upon request. For additional information, contact Group Sales at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

The Global Guides Program has been internationally recognized through presentations at numerous museum conferences, including the American Alliance of Museums, the Mid-Atlantic Association of Museums, and the American Association of State and Local History. Additionally, articles about this program have been featured in Museum magazine, Hyperallergic, and by the Associated Press in dozens of publications around the world.


Contact

Jill DiSanto, Public Relations Director
215.898.2956