Meet MGA Students


The Keough School’s inaugural master of global affairs class includes 38 students from 22 countries: Afghanistan, Canada, Chile, China, Colombia, Egypt, Iran, Kenya, Mali, Morocco, Nigeria, Pakistan, Palestine, the Philippines, Sierra Leone, South Africa, Tajikistan, Ukraine, the United States, Uzbekistan, Vietnam, and Zimbabwe.

The students bring a wealth of professional experience in international development, education, peacebuilding, environmental conservation, human rights, humanitarian assistance, journalism, and other fields. All students in the class have received fellowships thanks to a number of generous families, as well as foundation support and funding from institutes and the University more widely.



Oleksii Kovalenko

Oleksii Kovalenko

International Peace Studies

Ukraine

Oleksii Kovalenko worked as a journalist covering economics, politics, and peacekeeping for Focus, a weekly magazine in Ukraine. He holds an M.A. in journalism and a B.A. in international relations and foreign policy. Most recently, he studied media portrayal of internally displaced people from Ukraine’s Donbass region. Oleksii was the recipient of a national journalism award for his coverage of volunteers working amid violent conflict in Eastern Ukraine. He is the recipient of a Nanovic Institute Fellowship.

Parusha Naidoo

Parusha Naidoo

International Peace Studies

South Africa

Parusha Naidoo has worked as a researcher for the Human Sciences Research Council and has interned at the Institute for Justice and Reconciliation in Cape Town, South Africa. She holds a B.Soc.Sci. in economics, international relations, and media studies, and an honors degree in justice and transformation from the University of Cape Town. Through the Restitution Foundation, she recently developed a series of youth dialogues among young South Africans, focusing on justice, equality, and restitution. Parusha is the recipient of a Thomas D. McCloskey Fellowship.

Patrick Calderon

Patrick Calderon

Global Affairs + Specialization

Canada

Patrick Calderon recently worked for a Washington, D.C.-area international nonprofit, where he helped implement a State Department grant enabling undergraduate students from developing countries to study in the United States. He also has worked in education with immigrant and refugee populations in Canada and youth in Morocco. Patrick holds a B.A. in political science and theology from Notre Dame. He is the recipient of a Samuel and Kathleen Awad Global Affairs Fellowship.

Quang Ngoc Thang

Quang Ngoc Thang

Sustainable Development

Vietnam

Quang Ngoc Thang has worked in both the private and public sectors in Vietnam, focusing on economic policy initiatives for the Vietnam Chamber of Commerce and Industry. He also recently interned at a nongovernmental organization that provides legal advocacy and empowerment for communities affected by economic investment and corruptions. He holds a bachelor’s degree in economic law from Hanoi Law University in Hanoi, and speaks Vietnamese and French. Ngoc is the recipient of a McKenna Center Fellowship.

Rhea V. Silvosa

Rhea V. Silvosa

International Peace Studies

Philippines

Rhea V. Silvosa worked as the program officer for the Annual Peacebuilding Training Program of the Mindanao Peacebuilding Institute, coordinating an international training and developing training in peacebuilding and conflict transformation. She is actively involved in civil society groups that advocate for human rights and restorative and transitional justices. She holds a bachelor’s degree in secondary education (cum laude) from the Mindanao State University-Iligan Institute of Technology. Rhea is the recipient of a Kroc Institute Fellowship.

Sarah Davies Breen

Sarah Davies Breen

Global Affairs + Specialization

United States

Sarah Davies Breen has worked most recently in higher education. She has held multiple positions at the University of Chicago, where she was director of academic and faculty affairs in the social sciences and manager of research initiatives and visiting fellows at the Neubauer Collegium for Culture and Society. Sarah serves on the board of BLUME Haiti, a nonprofit organization focused on music education. Sarah spent two years as a volunteer music teacher in Haiti, where she learned to speak Haitian Creole. She holds a B.M. in music education from Lawrence University and a certificate in project management from the University of Chicago. Sarah is the recipient of a Donald & Marilyn Keough Fellowship.

Shuyuan Shen

Shuyuan Shen

Global Affairs + Specialization

China

Shuyuan Shen earned a B.Soc.Sci. in sociology and political science from the Chinese University of Hong Kong. Previously, he served as an intern at the Center for Child Rights and Corporate Social Responsibility in Shenzhen and a data journalist at Initium Media in Hong Kong. His research interests focus on the political identification and participation of migration and refugees. Shuyuan speaks Mandarin and Cantonese. He is the recipient of a Donald & Marilyn Keough Fellowship.

Sofía del Valle

Sofía del Valle

Sustainable Development

Chile

Sofía del Valle has worked for organizations focused on inequality and socio-environmental conflicts. Before coming to Notre Dame, Sofía worked at Casa de la Paz, a Chilean-based nongovernmental organization that advises institutions on conflict resolution and community relations. She also has worked as a volunteer with vulnerable children, youth, and women while living in a slum in southern Chile. She holds a B.A. in sociology from the Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile. Sofía is the recipient of a Kellogg Institute Fellowship.


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