SHEYENE GERARDI is a Venezuelan actress and the founder of two organizations. The Sheyene Institute, which she started in Venezuela in 2007, has now expanded into multiple countries to advance and disseminate scientific knowledge to enhance technological literacy. She also started Sheyene eHealth, an electronic healthcare information delivery network for rare diseases, after becoming the only survivor of a rare type of cancer, beating a prediction of 3 months to live. Sheyene’s plan to accelerate human expansion into space and broadening the ownership of space industry resulted in an invitation to join planetary scientists from NASA’s CLASS as the Robotics and Artificial Intelligence (AI) Outreach lead in 2018.
Her journey proves nothing short of inspiring. Sheyene first captivated Venezuela as one of its most celebrated entertainment icons for more than a decade on television. She is currently promoting technological literacy globally, working with NGOs, international and regional governments to introduce her program into low-resource communities, conflict areas, non-formal school systems and prison systems. Sheyene is stepping out as Executive Producer in entertainment productions for social change as part of her ambitious global educational initiative.
Sheyene Gerardi Story So Far…
Sheyene was born in Caracas, the only child of a family of Italian and Brazilian descent. During the sixth month of her mother's pregnancy, Sheyene's biological father tragically died in a car accident. Her mother was both a veterinarian and the chair of a family-owned mining company located in southeastern Venezuela. Sheyene studied Medicine at the Universidad Central de Venezuela. Prior to attending university, she represented her school in a mathematics and chemistry competitions, ranking at the highest level.While pursuing her dream of becoming a doctor, she worked as a model part time and participated in the Miss Venezuela Pageant. Due to a mass opposition protest plunging the university into turmoil Sheyene’s school year was prematurely ended. Around that time, a prominent TV producer discovered Sheyene leading to starring roles in highly rated prime time soap operas broadcast internationally. Productions such as “Camaleona” and “Mujer con pantalones” further paved the way to international renown. Sheyene is known for her work in more than 30 countries, including Russia, Azerbaijan, Germany, Peru, Ecuador, Colombia, and Puerto Rico, airing over several different time periods with record overseas sales. Sheyene´s entertainment productions have been affiliated with Telemundo, NBC's Spanish-language network, broadcasting over cable or DTH systems (DirecTV Latin America), translated and dubbed into more than 15 languages, breaking audience records both inside and outside of Venezuela.
During a family trip, tragedy struck again when her mother and stepfather were killed in an automobile accident, leaving Sheyene with no living relatives. A year after losing her family, she received a diagnosis of advanced stage 4 lymphoma, a very rare type of cancer with only 60 cases reported worldwide and no survivors. The cancer had spread through 85% of her body, and doctors gave her only 3 months to live.
Sheyene was treated in Florida in the United States by Dr. Humberto Caldera, suffering no hair loss and maintaining a healthy appearance. She was never completely disconnected from the entertainment industry. Throughout her chemotherapy treatment Sheyene worked with her closest friend, photographer Tina Nibbana, and starred in two films in Mexico. Sheyene underwent three years of chemotherapy and she is now completely free of cancer and considered cured by science. After becoming the only survivor of a rare type of cancer, she started a telemedicine program that allows physicians and healthcare professionals to provide patient care, consultation, counseling and research, via the Internet, email, and even via telephone, targeting primarily people with rare diseases.
Sheyene’s early life and career inspired her academic background in medicine and art. She graduated with a degree in Art at the RCTV Acting Academy, in Caracas. She studied English and French in parallel with her medical studies and acting career. She continued her education, graduating with distinction from recognized institutions such as the University Carlos III of Madrid, Sotheby’s Institute, and Harvard University, including a master’s-level certificate in Space Resource Utilization offered by NASA’s Center for Lunar and Asteroid Surface Science (CLASS). Sheyene has won several awards, such as the "2 de Oro" (Golden 2) and the "Imagen del mundo”; the actress has also adds stellar credits in her role as a TV host in international prime time shows. In 2016, Sheyene Gerardi was named as a Mogul Influencer in New York City.
Sheyene’s plan to accelerate human expansion into space and broadening the ownership of space industry resulted in an invitation to join planetary scientists from NASA’s CLASS as the Robotics and Artificial Intelligence (AI) Outreach lead in 2018. Her collaboration with NASA has included internal strategy development of business related proposals, successfully incorporating leading planetary scientists, engineers and physicists from Latin America and Europe. Her work has contributed to the development and creation of NASA’s long-term strategic growth at the NASA's Center for Lunar and Atmospheric Surface Science (CLASS), the University of Central Florida (UCF), the Florida Space Institute (FSI) and NASA Solar System Exploration Research Virtual Institute (SSERVI).
After becoming heavily involved with NASA, Sheyene’s concern for the plight of the economically disadvantaged had crystallized. She is currently promoting technological literacy globally, working with NGOs, international and regional governments to introduce her program into low-resource communities, conflict areas, non-formal school systems and prison systems. The Sheyene Institute provides professional development and access to technologies, inspiring individuals to build, expand and pioneer the future in scientific discovery, space exploration and aeronautics research. As a direct response to the rising concern related to people’s ability to remain competitive in underdeveloped regions and to enhance global participation, Sheyene Institute has a sister non-profit branch called Sheyene School to address technological literacy in STEM related fields, by using robotics education in concert with robotics competitions along with jobs placement and entrepreneurial support. In partnership with non-governmental entities, international and regional governments, the organization has reached over 10 countries across South America, Middle East and Europe. The program is also serving prison systems, providing assistance with education to ease the process for reentry to society for people who have been wrongfully convicted, meeting the major goal of preparing individuals to be active and engaged contributors to a modern society and workforce for an automated future.
Making her show business careers more well-rounded, Sheyene is stepping out as Executive Producer in entertainment productions for social change, including movies, books and tv shows, as part of an ambitious global educational initiative that Sheyene is developing outside the confines of entertainment.