We are incredibly proud of our Spring 2019 MA award-winning graduates and would like to spotlight their successes and accomplishments during their time at Mason. Read more about their stories below.
For Rebecca, coming from southern Virginia to DC was originally a culture shock. Now that she has completed both her undergraduate and graduate degrees in Global Affairs she feels like she has all the skills necessary to get her dream job.
Global Affairs has helped Rebecca learn more about the world and see it in new ways. Though she originally thought about a career as a Japanese translator, she realized she had a bigger passion for the environment, in part due to her participation in the Global Politics Fellows program and her internship as a State Department.
During her time at Mason, Rebecca had a once in a lifetime opportunity of going to Cuba in the MA seminar abroad. As her first time out of the country she was able to experience a whole new culture and meet the most welcoming people.
When Rebecca is not in the GLOA office working as an undergraduate advisor, she is walking around parks and watching wildlife or taking care of her pets. Her passion in life is to work to protect the environment on a global scale and work with nonprofit organizations to protect animals. Rebecca would like to thank Dr. Breglia for the trip to Cuba, Dr. Ashley for pushing her outside her comfort zones and interviewing scholars, Erika Marquina for helping her with advising, and Professor Razzano for providing support when she needed it most.
Sabrine started off as an Accelerated Master’s student working to finish her Bachelor’s of Science in Psychology while also working to earn her Master's in Global Affairs with a specialization in Conflict and Security. Sabrine is interested in many things but two of these things include global mental health and American foreign policy. After graduation, she would like to work for a Think Tank here in DC and expand her knowledge on research and advocacy for foreign policy issues. Joining the Global Affairs Master's program changed the direction of her career aspirations and brought her new insights and understandings that have allowed her to better comprehend the world in which we live. She would like to thank her parents and her professors for supporting her and pushing her forward on this journey.
Since Aaron’s first day at Mason in August 2014, he has met some of the most intelligent and caring people he has come to call his colleagues and friends. He is happy to say he has stayed with the Global Affairs program since his very first day of class freshman year. He has been proud to represent Global Affairs and Mason as a whole throughout his undergraduate and graduate studies. His favorite class in the program was Dr. Son's Economic Globalization and Development class; though each class developed a critical aspect of his modern academic portfolio in some way. Like many graduates this year, his main goal for the future is staying away from Unemployment Assistance, hopefully through a career that applies the professional and personal lessons he has learned in this program. Aaron would like to thank the GLOA professors and staff who helped him to succeed throughout his time at Mason, specifically Dr. Breglia, Dr. Ashley, Dr. Son, Dr. Hultin, Dr. Razzano, and Ms. Lister. He looks forward to seeing everyone again in the near future!
Jessica Ostrowski-Wright is graduating with a Master’s in Global Affairsand a Graduate Certificate in Women & Gender Studies. Having studied abroad in Italy and Sweden during her undergraduate career at James Madison University, Jess discovered her passion for Global Affairs. While on campus, she spends time working in the Global Education Office helping students prepare for their study abroad experiences, or working on countless written assignments in Fenwick Library. While not working on campus, she can be found volunteering with social justice-focused organizations, or reading and spending time with her new kitten. While there are many highlights from her time in graduate school, her trip to Havana, Cuba in January of 2018 stands out the most. She loved having the opportunity to travel during the Global Affairs program, and this program connected her studies with real-world experiences.
She would like to thank all of her wonderful Global Affairs professors, Dr. Breglia, Dr. Ashley, Dr. Hultin, Dr. Son, and Dr. Razzano, as well as Stephanie Lister. And, in addition to thanking all of her incredible Women & Gender Studies professors, including Dr. Manuel-Scott and Dr. Lewis, she would especially like to thank her parents, roommates, and friends for their constant support.
Julianna is graduating with her MA in Global Affairs with a specialization in Conflict & Security. She began her graduate studies in the Fall of 2017 with the Accelerated Masters in Global Affairs program. She graduated last August with her Bachelor’s in Criminology.
One of her favorite parts of her graduate studies at Mason was the seminar abroad. She participated in the program to Cuba last winter. She loved the opportunity to travel, explore a new culture, and make some new friends along the way. Also, the 70-degree weather was not bad while it was snowing in Virginia!
Julianna would first like to thank her parents. She knows she would probably not be standing here without their constant support. Second, she would like to thank her two older brothers; she is glad they have grown past the bickering stage and now love and support each other more than anyone else in the world.
And finally, please do not ask her what her post-graduation plans are, she is just excited to see where life will take her!
Rebekah was a Peace Corps Volunteer from 2014-2016 serving as an Education Volunteer in rural Mozambique working with HIV and Malaria initiatives. She is now working with Change Management at Freddie Mac. At Mason, she was a Global Affairs student with a specialization in Global Governance and Public Management. Her favorite course in the Global Affairs program was the Capstone seminar with Dr. Razzano. In the future, she hopes to work in some capacity with International Development and project management.
Kelsey Hahn grew up in Midlothian, Virginia. She graduated from Randolph-Macon College with an undergraduate degree in political science and international studies with a minor in Spanish. It was there that Kelsey found her passion for understanding the complexities of international security. Once she visited Mason’s campus and met with the Global Affairs faculty she knew she wanted to continue her education here. During her time at Mason, she specialized in Global Conflict and Security, and was able to continue her research on the use of children in armed conflict, particularly in the Lord’s Resistance Army in central Africa. Mason has provided her so many memorable experiences but none as influential as studying abroad in Cuba this past January with the one and only Lisa Breglia. That experience and the rest of her time at Mason has been invaluable and she can’t thank the faculty and staff enough for all that they have done and will continue to do for all the students who have the honor of joining this upcoming cohort. She wants to give a special thanks to her parents for all of their support; she would not be where she is today without their influence and guidance.
Sol believes that Global Affairs is crucial not only for the global economy but for the development of humankind. Before coming to Mason, Sol received her Bachelor’s degree in International Relations from American University. She decided to continue her education and develop her insight into diverse and complex international issues through her studies in Mason’s Global Affairs program. She knows her educational experience at Mason provided her with a foundation for taking on new challenges. Additionally, it deepened her enthusiasm to pursue a career that allows her to express values and apply them in a positive and enhancing way for the international community.
Sol admits that being an international student is not an easy path! But, as they say, every cloud has a silver lining. Sol would like to express her gratitude to Dr. Breglia, Dr. Son, Dr. Ashley, Dr. Hultin, and Dr. Razzano and all the pathway instructors from INTO Mason. She would like to particularly thank her family who flew all the way from South Korea to congratulate her on this accomplishment. She would not be here without the support of her family.
Georgia Parolin Belina is a graduate of the Global Affairs program, with a specialization in Economics and Development. She decided to pursue her MA in Global Affairs to incorporate the knowledge with her degree in Law, combining both. After graduation, she plans to go back to Brazil to practice law. During her studies at Mason, she enjoyed all her classes and is looking forward to her study abroad this summer in Spain. Lastly, she wants to thank all her professors at Mason and her family.
Melody Sangkaworn is originally from Bangkok, Thailand. She completed her BA in Asian Studies and a minor in Chinese. Before she decided to come to the US, she was a tutor in Chinese, English and Thai. Then, she came to the US to pursue her MA in Global Affairs to further pursue her interests in culture and society. She chose to study at Mason for its diversity. For her, Global Affairs is about bringing her perspective to the table. It is about utilizing incredible resources to direct the change she wants to see in the world.
She loves to be around people from many different cultural backgrounds; and she is amazed by the richness this brings to life. The most memorable experience that she has had is to meet friends from all over the world. Her friends are the main reason that she did not feel isolated and homesick during her time at Mason.
Melody wants to thank all of her professors who always supported her throughout the semesters. Their encouragement and dedication meant a lot to her. Thank you to all her friends who always cheered her up and stayed by her side. The most important people are her family who offered her this valuable opportunity. Without them, she would never would have been able to experience a new world.