Speakers at November 2018 conference!

Indu Rupassara, Ph.D.  is the Chief Executive Officer/Director/ Vice-President of Fruit Vaccine, Inc

Dr. Rupassara received her PhD in Metabolomics/Biotechnology from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (UIUC), USA, in 2008. She also received MS degrees from the UIUC and University of Sydney, Australia, in Microbiology and Biochemistry. Her BSc degree is from the University of Peradeniya, Sri Lanka. Dr. Rupassara has presented talks in conferences in the USA, Europe, Australia, and Asia, in addition to publicizing her research in journal articles and book-chapters. She has been previously employed as a Researcher, Consultant, Metabolomist/Mass Spectrometrist, Lab Director, and a Lecturer, in the USA, Australia, and Sri Lanka. Dr. Rupassara’s multidisciplinary research expertise includes biotechnology, microbiology, immunology, analytical biochemistry, metabolomics and other ‘omics’ technologies, peptide and protein chemistry, nutritional sciences, and molecular biology using a wide array of biological systems such as humans, animals (mice, rats, dogs, and pigs), plants, and microorganisms.


Tiara Armstrong, MSW, LSW, QMHP

Boys group Home- Medical Liaison

Cunningham Children’s Home

Tiara obtained her undergraduate degree in 2008 with a major in Health Planning and Administration while competing as a member of the Women’s Track team at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. After completion of her B.S, she began working at a non-profit child welfare and educational services agency. As a paraprofessional, she provided care and support at a behavioral school along with services and interventions to children, young adults and their families. During this time Tiara dedicated time outside of teaching as a volunteer coach for the Women’s Track and Field team at the U of I.

In 2014, tiara decided to further her education in the social services field with the goal of becoming a licensed clinical social worker specializing in mental health. Much of the work she does involves working with clients battling mental illness, substance abuse, poverty and many other challenges. The past two years as a licensed social worker, she has worked at a group home for young adult boys providing clients with day to day medical needs ( psychiatric appointments and medications) as well as individual therapy services and crisis intervention.



Dream Girls Academy to host its conference for 6-12 grade girls November 3rd, exploring material such as Hip-Hop’s effect, and healthy relationships, at Urbana High School.

Back for another round, Debarah McFarland has organized a community lineup to promote self-esteem, life skills, and inspire young girls to improve the academic climate in Champaign-Urbana.


CHAMPAIGN-URBANA, 2018/ CHAMPION DIARIES/ —   According to Domestic Violence Statistics, 10 million children witness domestic violence every year, and it is girls and women aged 16-24 who have the highest rates of domestic abuse.


One has to wonder, “Why are students fighting so much in school?”


Partnering with the Urbana School District 116 and Champaign Unit 4 Schools, DGA Sessions are for girls who enjoy the sisterhood environment, and who openly communicate their goals, strengths, their concerns on sexual orientation, identifying healthy relationships, and sports scholarship. Through inclusive programs like “Girls Only!” and “Dare to Be a Queen,” DGA’s curriculum can accommodate every girl of this societal age.


The speakers have created an honest, open and transparent space, in hopes that these young women will spread peace throughout their classrooms, their homes, and in their communities. The goal is for 60 registered girls from Champaign-Urbana to attend, participate in an exclusive experience, and become DGA change agents for the social media campaign after the Domestic Violence Awareness Month in October.


From professionals in academia, social work, public health, physical education, and business management, DGA is enlisting women to provide leadership and structure for the following agenda:


Breakfast 7:45-8:30a

Opening Session 8:35a

Values and Virtues— Hip Hop’s Effect on Girls, and Self-Reflection 9-9:40a

My Body, My Business— The Hygiene Session on Care, and Utilizing Products 9:45-10:25a

Sealing the Sacred— A Girl’s Physical Development, and Exploration vs. Exploitation 10:30-11:10a

Lunch 11:15a-12p

A Scholar, I Am— Being Academically Assertive, and Owning One’s Education 12:05-12:45p

Anger Management— Identifying Emotions, and Facilitating Healthy Perspective 12:50-1:30p

Closing Session 1:35-2p


This conference is planned for a full day of literature, practicum, and experiences- creating a space for sisterhood and progression. Please contact Debarah McFarland if you would like to participate in this conference by volunteering, if you would like to sponsor the event in kind, or towards membership fees. This is one of many events DGA is hosting around town, in hopes to increase awareness, foster lifelong learning, and encourage these students to be more vested in their academic environment.


All middle and high school girls are encouraged to apply for this event. We want to find 60 girls who could really go for some change to their school environment. These future Dream Girls can expect nourishment, nurturing, and knowledge towards becoming change-agents and self-advocating, life-long learners. We need applicants! Deadline October 31.


EVENT REGISTRATION: https://goo.gl/forms/rp119BVcrRfQm6xy1

Email: dreamgirlsacademyil@gmail.com

Social Media: @DGAillinois


Dream Girls Academy (DGA) is a non-profit organization in the Champaign-Urbana community that is committed to delivering skills and development tools that foster lifelong learning in all women and girls.




Upcoming dates!

We will be hosting sessions this Summer, in conjunction with the Champaign Park District. Beginning on Thursday, July 7, our Academy is set to begin topics within our curriculum, and cannot wait to disclose this knowledge amongst our Rubies and Diamonds!!

Douglass Library

6-7:30p on Thursday, July 7

11a-12:30p on Saturday, July 16

6-7:30p on Thursday, July 21

11a-12:30p on Saturday, July 30

Leonhard Center

6-7:30p on Thursday, August 11

11a-12:30p on Saturday, August 20

11a-12:30p on Saturday, August 27

Be sure to fill out the DGA information by clicking the link at the top right corner of our homepage!

We are rising as a phoenix!

Welcome to the story of Dream Girls Academy in Champaign-Urbana, IL. We welcome you to our Academy, and thank you for your attention. If there is anything we can do for you or you for us, we invite your message at this time. We have a growing list of Change Agents to better serve women and girls of all stages of life.