Born and raised in Wilton, Connecticut I chose to attend American University in Washington D.C. and study in the prestigious School of Public Affairs. I am a senior pursuing a BA in Communications, Legal Institutions, Economics, and Government (CLEG), and am also minoring in International Studies. Additionally, I am a member of the American University School of Public Affairs Leadership Program.
In my junior year, I traveled abroad to study at the University of Oxford at Lady Margaret Hall. I can easily say this was the hardest year of my academic life. Not only was the style of classes completely different, but so too were the academic rigors of each course I took. As I was studying Politics and International Relations, I decided that I wanted to maximize my time at Oxford and took a wide range of courses. I took a political philosophy class entitled Theory of Politics; an economic class entitled Comparative Political Economy; IR classes entitled Politics of the EU, Politics of Latin American, and Politics in the Middle East; and I took a Modern British Politics and Government Course. At first, writing 12 essays per term for three terms seemed rather daunting, and it was difficult, but I was quickly able to adapt to life in England and particularly in Oxford. I utilized the many resources available to me, mainly the vast library collection and my tutors (a.k.a. professors). While I had to return to the U.S. before my last term began, I was able to take the skills I learned, such as effective scholarly research capabilities, analysis, and general inquisitive, back home with me to continue my academic success. I am happy to say that I performed at the University of Oxford to the best of my ability as I earned three ‘first’ distinctions and three ‘two-one’ distinctions, which translates into a 3.9 GPA for the year.
At American University, I have also demonstrated an ability to grow as a student and as a leader. My membership in the American University School of Public Affairs Leadership Program has allowed me to learn how to more effectively communicate. In my first year in the program, I collaborated with 5 other members to create a social action project that would provide underprivileged students with the preparation they needed to fulfill their potential on standardized testing. Communication was necessary as I needed to ensure my goals and aims were clearly conveyed while also listening to my other group members was essential. In my second year in the program, I am currently working towards setting up a tutoring and mentorship program that improves a student’s performance both inside and outside the classroom. I have done extensive research on the effect of income inequality on education, and have found that it negatively affects a student’s performance. Doing this project individually has brought forth challenges that I have had to face head-on. I have had to find self-motivation and also needed to take initiative. I cannot rely on other group members, and I have confronted these challenges in order to create the most successful social action project I can.
In my senior year, I was a second-year teaching assistant for the SPA Leadership Program. Additionally, I was able to be a Communications and Legislative Affairs Intern for the Connecticut Insurance Department during the spring semester. I will be graduating magna cum laude, and as a member of the Pi Sigma Alpha Fraternity, the national political science honors society.