After graduating from top universities across the United States and Europe such as Harvard, Princeton, Georgetown and Warwick, we started Aspire Academy in 2011. As friends, we shared a passion for education, a strong belief in the Romanian youth and a desire to offer our peers in Romania and Eastern Europe similar educational and social opportunities to the ones we experienced abroad. We now oversee Aspire's evolution as part of the Senior Board:

Ana Sarbu

Ana Sarbu graduated magna cum laude from Georgetown University in 2012, with a double degree in Government and Russian. She is currently working in business development for Palantir Technologies, a software company co-founded by Peter Thiel. Previously she was employed with Richard Attias & Associates, a New York-based international strategic communications consulting company.

Alex Radu

Alex graduated Harvard University in 2008 with a degree in Economics and Government and received an MBA from Harvard Business School in 2012. He is currently working in London and New York. He is passionate about transforming education and enjoys sailing, flying and traveling.

Alexandra Copos de Prada

Alexandra Copos de Prada is the CEO of ANA PAN, a chain of 23 pastry stores with tradition in Bucharest and the Co-Founder of Moonstar Ventures, a start-up in education technology that aims to reinvent corporate training, based out of London. Alexandra was previously the CEO of Ana Hotels, the largest hotel company in Romania with over 1,000 employees and 30M EUR turnover. In 2010 she co-founded Aspire Academy aiming to inspire high school and university students to achieve beyond what they believe possible. In 2015 she co-founded Aspire for Teachers, the top pedagogical academy for Romanian public school teachers that is focused on training teachers to embed their students with the skills they need to succeed professionally. Alexandra was previously a consultant with McKinsey & Company in New York and Dubai, and led New York City’s principal training academy as part of the Department of Education in NYC. She graduated from Princeton University with a B.A. in Economics, Political Economy and Finance, from the Wharton School, the University of Pennsylvania with an M.B.A., and from Harvard Kennedy School of Government with a Masters in Public Administration.

Dinu Gheorghe

Dinu Gheorghe is leading the online operations for RCS&RDS, the leading telekom operator in Romania, managing both the ecommerce and the media platforms. Previously he worked as a financial consultant for Hidroelectrica and Electrica S.A, the two largest energy production and distribution companies in Romania. Dinu’s passion for entrepreneurship lead him to create 2 succesful startups in the IT and agriculture sectors. Dinu holds a Bachelor’s Degree from Warwick Business School and a Master in Finance from Instituto Empresa.

Alex Lazar

Alex graduated from London Business School and is a former Co-President of Aspire (2011-2014), currently seating on the Board of Aspire. He previously worked in London in strategy consulting and currently resides in Bucharest where he is managing new product launches in the water industry.

Ana-Maria Dorobăț

Ana-Maria graduated magna cum laude from the American University in Paris, specializing in Political Science and International Economics. She also holds a Master’s in Public Administration, from the University of Bucharest, as well as a certificate in International Relations, from the Romanian Diplomatic Institute. Currently, Ana is working for the American Chamber of Commerce in Romania as Advocacy & External Relations Coordinator.

Dani Oros

Dani is leading the Marketing department at Google and YouTube in Romania. Dani was a participant at Aspire Academy 2011 and has been involved in various roles ever since: Finance Manager, Co-President and Board Member. Prior to joining Google, he was a Country Manager for BlaBlaCar, the world largest’s carpooling platform, in Romania, Hungary and Croatia. Before that, he worked as a management consultant for A.T. Kearney and as Head of Special Projects for Ana Holding / Ana Imep.

Ana Voicilă

Ana joined Aspire High School in 2014 and ever since she has been part of the Aspire organising team. She graduated from an Economics and Business program at UCL and now continues her studies in Finance at Harvard Extension School, while working in investment banking in London. Ana joined Aspire’s Mission Circle for 2 years, lead the Incubator and acted as Aspire Co-President. She is currently sitting on the Aspire Strategic Board.


Giorgiana Neagu

Giorgiana was part of the first generation of Aspire Academy, in 2011, and was afterwards involved in the organizing team for 4 editions of the programs, in different roles (Head of Logistics, Head of Programs and Co-President). She studied communication and public relations and has a Master`s Degree in Organizational Communication. At the moment, she is Training Coordinator at a multinational company in Brasov, leading a team of 5 people and implementing training programs for 850 people.

Our vision is to develop a community of ethical, successful and influential leaders across a wide variety of disciplines, with diverse backgrounds, across Europe and beyond. Over 70 individuals contribute to make Aspire a reality:

Rodica Burlacu

Rodica is one of the co-presidents of Aspire, being involved in the organization since 2014, when she attended Aspire Academy. She has held multiple roles in Aspire, first in the Logistics team, and then focusing mostly on Recruitment for the three summer programs. Aside from Aspire, Rodica has recently graduated from BI Norwegian Business School in Oslo with a degree in Strategic Management, and completed part of her education in business and economics in St Gallen and Strasbourg. As a professional, Rodica has been working as a consultant in large European funding projects and with the private sector in economics research for the Baltic consulting company Civitta.

Ștefania Cioroba

Stefania Cioroba is one of the co-presidents of Aspire. She joined Aspire Academy in 2016 and ever since she has been part of the organizing team, as Recruitment Lead for the summer programs and Project Manager for Aspire Academy. She graduated from BI Norwegian Business School and the University of St. Gallen with a Master’s degree in Strategic Management and was the first Runner-Up in Harvard Microeconomics of Competitiveness Competition in 2016. Stefania is currently an Instructional Designer at Moonstar Ventures, a startup that aims to deliver the future of corporate learning. She is passionate about Psychology and Organizational Behavior, and considers that change can only be fostered by empowering people and shaping youth potential.

Cristian Ciuca

Cristi is an Aspire Academy 2018 Alumnus and a Business Analyst at McKinsey & Company and has served client on topics ranging from strategy & innovation to the full transformation of a major Telecommunications player. He holds a Master’s degree in Aerospace Engineering from Imperial College London and has been involved in several research projects on computational physics at both Imperial College and MIT. Before joining McKinsey he has worked for a year as a software developer at ANSYS, where he helped clients in the automotive industry incorporate advanced software solutions in their designs. He is passionate about the startup ecosystem and, together with some of his colleagues from Imperial, has won a pitching competition in front of angel investors in London, presenting a new approach to food ordering apps.

Raluca Cocuti

Raluca is an alumna of the Aspire Academy 2013 edition and has been involved in the organizing team for several editions (being parts of the Logistics, People and more recently the Finance team, which she is also coordinating). Raluca graduated from the Bucharest University of Economic Studies, having specialized in International Relations and Business Administration, and she is currently working in sales for Microchip, one of the global, leading semiconductor companies in the industry. Raluca is passionate about education (in all its forms), social entrepreneurship and Asian cultures and languages.

Elena Zaharia

Elena is an Aspire High School Alumna 2014. She has been a member of the Logistics Team since 2016 where she coordinated several projects as a project manager and currently she is the head of both the logistics circle and the people circle. She studied International Relations and European Studies at the University of Bucharest. Elena is passionate about education, traveling, learning, event planning. She believes that we can make a change in the society only if we start with ourselves.

Alexandra Roșca

Alexandra is an Aspire High School 2015 alumna and has joined the organization team in 2018, now leading the Image Circle. She is currently studying Communication Science at the University of Amsterdam. Alexandra is constantly experiencing with different fields in search for her passion. She is a beginner scuba-diver, very passionate about traveling and actively trying to develop her creativity.

Diana Murguleț

Diana is an alumna of Aspire Academy 2016 and is currently coordinating the recruitment process for the Aspire summer programs. Last year she was a member of the People Circle and helped recruit the Academy and Professional cohort. Diana graduated from University of Birmingham with a degree in Computer Science and Imperial College with a masters in Machine Learning. She currently works as a data science consultant in London. Diana is passionate about education, theatre and travelling.

Using an innovative system for self organization entitled holacracy, our team is organized in Circles:
Mission Critical Circle:
  • Elena Zaharia
  • Luca Pantea
  • Ana Trandafir
  • Dan Mocan
  • Luca Onica
  • Ana Maria Olaru
  • Andra Neagu
  • Arina Florescu
  • Maria Cezar
  • Tudor Gaitan
  • Andrei Simion
People Circle:
  • Elena Zaharia
  • Mara Rațiu
  • Daria Anghel
  • Anca Scarlat
  • Bianca Drotleff
  • Teodora Burduja
  • Augustus Sirbu
  • Teo Pariza
  • Georgia Canura
  • Alexia Manea
Image Circle: 
  • Alexandra Roșca
  • Ana Zlătescu
  • Denisa Checiu
  • Elena Sorina Mihai
  • Jasmin Chue
  • Mihai Popa
  • Oana Nourescu
  • Rareș Borcea
  • Roxana Ungurenuș
  • Vlad Popelca
Money Circle:
  • Raluca Cocuti
  • Tudor Constantinescu
  • Andrei Petrescu
  • Tudor Ardelean
  • Paul Gaica
  • Alin Hampău
  • Patricia Trofin
  • Ioana Codrina Simionescu
  • Matei Apolzan
  • Raluca Georgescu
Pre-Accelerator Circle: 
  • Cristian Ciuca
  • Alexandru Romanica
  • Andrei Petrescu
  • Leonard Dima
  • Florin Gheorghiu
  • Noah Shoppl
Recruitment Circle:
  • Diana Murguleț
  • Mihai Popa
  • Ștefania Pila
  • Daria Anghel
  • Alexia Manea
  • Alex Mocanu
  • Georgia Canura
  • Denisa Pandele
  • Denisa Checiu
  • Sabina Gradinariu
  • Patricia Trofin
  • Lucie Obrtelová
  • Mara Rațiu
  • Maka Shankishvili
  • Yvonne Natalia Preda
  • Laura Radacovici
  • Dalia Ardelean
  • Mara Duțu
  • Andrea Panțiru