Alexia Papageorgiou

Co-Founder, Teens for Democracy

Alexia is a 17-year-old student who has a longstanding passion for democracy and human rights. 

Growing up in Athens, she was captivated by the stories of Homer’s “Odyssey” and the influence of the Athenian statesman Pericles, who championed what would become modern democracy. As the Co-Founder of Teens for Democracy, she organized the Teens Athens Democracy Forum to provide a mechanism that allows youth to exchange ideas and inspire the start of a movement driven by teens themselves.

Outside of her work with Teens for Democracy, Alexia’s love of literature sparked a desire to advocate for the education of refugees. In 2020, she founded Ray of Hope, an organization dedicated to helping refugee children empower themselves by expanding their educational pursuits and becoming active citizens. To date, Ray of Hope, through its educational programs and experiential initiatives, has worked with over 1600 refugee children in 8 camps all over Greece.

This summer, Alexia interned at the European Parliament in Brussels and Strasbourg, where she was involved in committee meetings about search & rescue for refugees as well as women's rights and gender equality. As a volunteer for the ACLU, she engaged in digital organizing for Stacey Abrams’ gubernatorial campaign in Georgia and participated in phone banks to defend abortion access in Kansas. These experiences allowed her to see firsthand what the fight for change looks like on the ground.

In addition to her on-the-ground work, Alexia has academically explored these interests via research. In 2021, she worked alongside a Rice University professor to explore democratic principles in a paper titled “Presidential Pardons, Political Reconciliation and Social Justice.” In 2023, Alexia conducted a research paper, in collaboration with an Oxford University researcher, entitled “A Fractured Education: The Impact of COVID-19 on Refugees’ Educational Opportunities in Greece”.


Alexia Papageorgiou