What I’ve done; Where I want to go

 

Born and raised in Portland, Oregon I came to Washington over a year ago to further pursue my passions and receive a top tier education at the School of International Service at American University. I am currently international relations and communications, in addition to receiving certificates in Advanced Leadership Studies and Peace Corps Prep.

My pre-college experience reflects my ambition and work ethic. While still in high school, I served as the Student Body President,  worked with the City of Hillsboro as a voting board member to implement and update new zoning and land usage laws and assisted the Oregon State House and Majority Leader Val Hoyle in testifying for new education policies. I also have always been passionate about community service. I worked closely with Special Olympics Oregon for over four years;  taking on coaching roles, leading successful community level fundraisers, speaking at conferences,  and as the Youth Outreach Intern, creating fundraising and marketing materials which were used state-wide.

As a young professional, I have spent the last year exploring my interests, learning and growing- both personally and professionally. By coincidence, my freshman year in D.C. overlapped with the 2016 Presidential Election. After being front and center during such a historic and unprecedented race, I was encouraged to intern with the Vice President of the National Organization for Women the following spring. I left my internship with extensive experience in grassroots advocacy, and the continued belief that equality for all should be a national priority.

I also left my freshman year with a foundation in international service and world politics. Thanks to a generous grant through American University Abroad, I was able to further my studies over the summer in Belfast, Northern Ireland. I took a course (“The Politics of Conflict Transformation”) taught by Professors Carolyn Gallaher and Kimberly Cowell-Myers.  During the course, I visited government institutions, NGOs, political activists, academics and historical sites to learn about the history of paramilitary conflict in Belfast and elsewhere. I also conducted research in Belfast on victimhood in violent conflicts in order to present findings on possible reparations for victims post-conflict. It was here that I discovered I prefer to learn through immersive research and travel. 

Following my experience in Belfast, I have continued researching violence and paramilitary activity. I am currently researching how the international discourse on childhood and hegemonic Western definitions impact children’s role in conflict in varying cultural contexts. I also have spent this semester in a number of different roles- most notably I am interning at The Sheridan Group. At my current position, I have been given the opportunity to research development strategies to counter violent extremism as my internship project. I also work directly with our client portfolio, performing duties further outlined in my resume.

Looking forward, I am interested in international development, terrorism research and paramilitary studies and more broadly, political consulting. As a young person, I have a wide range of interests and passions. Most importantly, I am excited about learning and continuing to explore all that D.C. has to offer.