About Lauren

I am a current student at American University located in Washington D.C. studying political science and future student of The University of Chicago pursuing a masters in International Relations. I plan on  finding a career in foreign policy, particularly working on development and violence prevention. 

I am focused on advancing the research of governance as a tool to understand state power and intend to pursue developing the field as a graduate student. My studies have led me to focus on the interactions between people and their government. My work and studies on local politics have deepened my interest in understanding a state’s failure to provide social benefits and how this forces individuals to respond and form networks of governance to meet their needs. I am interested in how these groups operate and why some turn predatory and others do not, theorizing that marginalized groups form beneficial governing institutions, but their existence may threaten the state. When pursued, this topic can help provide a better understanding of the relationship between people and their state as well as a state’s strength. My work as a graduate student will seek to further my inquiry into states’ failure to fulfill their duties and the effect on civilians. 

As an American University’s Leadership program student, I spent my first two years crafting social action projects focused on curriculums. As a senior teaching assistant for the program, I advise and mentor six second-year students in their own unique social action projects. I also spent the past seven months working as a fellow and volunteer leader on Brynne Kennedy’s congressional campaign in California, hoping to make some changes in my community. 

After graduation, my goals are to work in violence prevention and foreign policy by researching at a think tank or working for the state department on foreign policy. In pursuing a professional career, I am interested in advocating for marginalized communities’ governance efforts both in the U.S. and abroad. Coming from a comparative background is essential as it would provide me with comprehensive knowledge of global systems and how to best approach problems for people involved.