Skip to Content
Resource Articles //

Social Change in Action: Three Inspiring Stories of Walden Graduates

Alumni share their examples of social change and how earning a degree online prepared them to make a positive difference.

How will you change the world? Get inspired with these three stories of how Walden University alumni are using their online education to advance positive social change in communities around the globe.


Alvin Mena Cantero ’17: A Global Impact on Healthcare

After earning his Master of Science in Nursing in 2015, Cuban refugee Alvin Mena Cantero opened an urgent care and walk-in clinic in Houston to provide healthcare for low-income patients. With a desire to heal those in need and to affect social change around the world, Cantero expanded his impact with traveling clinics. He has provided home health visits in flooded rural Texas and wellness checks in Haiti for people affected by the 2010 earthquake. He sponsored a community clinic in Cairo, where he educated local health providers on caring for the poorest populations.

Cantero, also a graduate of the Doctor of Nursing Practice (DNP) program, says he hopes to be a vehicle for Walden’s social change mission: “I’m determined to spread Walden’s values around the world by providing health services to vulnerable populations.”

Avon Hart-Johnson ’15: Building Stronger Families

Avon Hart-Johnson is a social entrepreneur on a mission to change lives. Since earning a PhD in Human Services in 2015, Hart-Johnson has committed her career to supporting and strengthening families affected by incarceration through her nonprofit, DC Project Connect. She has spoken internationally about the topic and has written a children’s book to help kids with incarcerated parents.

The former IT manager turned humanitarian says: “Social change is truly in my DNA now. When I think about what needs to be done, it’s no longer about gaining credentials for my CV. It’s about effecting positive social change that improves the quality of life for the people I serve.”

Caleb Lorenson ’17: Improving Thailand’s Education System

As a young teacher, Caleb Lorenson, an MS in Education (MSEd) graduate and 2017 Scholar of Change, moved his family from Nebraska to the other side of the world for a career educating at-risk youth in northern Thailand. 

In the years since, Lorenson has worked to advance social change by developing quality curriculum and improving learning systems in the country. Today, he draws on what he learned in his online master’s degree program to train teachers in Thailand’s rural schools, where he hopes his work will “touch thousands of kids’ lives over the course of years.”

How will you create social change?

Walden graduates use their online education to make a positive difference in their lives and in the lives of others. Explore how Walden’s online degree programs can prepare you to effect social change and make an impact on the issues that matter most to you. 

Walden University is an accredited institution offering bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degree programs online. Expand your career options and earn your degree using a convenient, flexible learning platform that fits your busy life.

Walden University is accredited by The Higher Learning Commission,