Meet MGA Students


Current students and alumni from the master of global affairs program in the Keough School of Global Affairs represent more than 60 countries including:

Afghanistan; Argentina; Bangladesh; Belarus; Belize; Botswana; Burkina Faso; Canada; Chile; China; Colombia; Costa Rica; Democratic Republic of Congo; Ecuador; Egypt; El Salvador; Ethiopia; Finland; The Gambia; Ghana; Guatemala; Haiti; Honduras; Hungary; India; Indonesia; Iran; Japan; Kazakhstan; Kenya; Kyrgyzstan; Lebanon; Mali; Mexico; Moldova; Mongolia; Morocco; Myanmar; Nepal; Nicaragua; Nigeria; Pakistan; Palestine; Peru; the Philippines; Russia; Sierra Leone; Singapore; South Africa; South Korea; Syria; Taiwan; Tajikistan; Trinidad and Tobago; Tunisia; Turkey; Ukraine; Uganda; the United Kingdom; the United States; Uzbekistan; Venezuela; Vietnam; Yemen; and Zimbabwe.

Our 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.



Christine Germann

Christine Germann

Global Affairs + Specialization (offered through 2022), 2020

United States

Christine Germann volunteered with the WorldTeach organization as an English teacher in the public education system in American Samoa during the 2016-2017 academic year. Prior to earning a BA in global studies with a concentration in international development in 2016, she conducted independent research in Tanzania, examining the current perceptions of child marriage in a rural region. Christine is interested in language of instruction research, gender equity in education, and program implementation in educational systems within developing nations, specifically sub-Saharan Africa. As a master of global affairs student, she was the recipient of a Donald & Marilyn Keough Fellowship.

Raushan Zhandayeva

Raushan Zhandayeva

Global Affairs + Specialization (offered through 2022), 2020

Kazakhstan

Raushan Zhandayeva graduated cum laude from Nazabayev University with a BA in political science and international relations. She was awarded a U.S. State Department scholarship to participate in its Global UGRAD Program, and she studied for one semester at California State University Bakersfield. Raushan interned as a research assistant at the Information-Analytical Center of the Ministry of Education and Science of Kazakhstan. She also promoted sustainable energy technologies at Expo 2017 in Astana, Kazakhstan. Passionate about diplomacy, she has participated in and co-organized several Model United Nations conferences. Raushan is particularly captivated by the global economy and the politics behind it, and aspires to contribute to economic and social development in Central Asia. As a master of global affairs student, she was the recipient of a Donald & Marilyn Keough Fellowship.

Ephraim Bassey Emah

Ephraim Bassey Emah

International Peace Studies, 2020

Nigeria

Ephraim Bassey Emah has worked as an intern with Mennonite Central Committee, where he served as a peace activity researcher, documenting conflict occurrences in northern Nigeria. He worked with the Centre for Peace Advancement in Nigeria as a community engagement program officer, engaging youth groups involved in substance abuse, gang violence, and identity conflict escalation in Nigeria’s Plateau State. Most recently, he worked for the United States Institute for Peace, working in Nigeria to establish of platforms for collaborative problem-solving and prevention of insecurity and crime in conflict-affected communities. As a master of global affairs student, Ephraim was the recipient of a Kroc Institute Fellowship.

Ahmed Makki

Ahmed Makki

Sustainable Development, 2020

Pakistan

Ahmed Makki came to the Keough School with seven years of experience working in global development, focusing on education reform. In Pakistan, he worked with a leading consulting firm and global education experts to develop tailored solutions for more than 50,000 public primary schools in Punjab. Specifically, Ahmed designed and implemented one of the world’s largest tablet-based assessment systems for measuring learning outcomes in primary school children. Ahmed also has worked in the rule of law sector, focusing on the improvement of court case management and police data collection systems. As a master of global affairs student, he was the recipient of a Kellogg Institute Fellowship.

Profile: MGA student brings Muslim perspective to refugee aid research in Uganda

Frank Spesia

Frank Spesia

Global Affairs + Specialization (offered through 2022), 2020

United States

Frank Spesia’s professional background focuses on education in underserved communities. He worked on primary education initiatives in Malawi and South Africa and taught 5th grade in Los Angeles as a member of the Alliance for Catholic Education. While teaching, he focused on creating a classroom and school community that was academically rigorous, safe, and inclusive. Frank holds an MEd from the University of Notre Dame and a BA in political science and peace studies from Notre Dame, where his research interests focused on social justice and education.

Theresa Puhr

Theresa Puhr

Global Affairs + Specialization (offered through 2022), 2020

United States

Theresa Puhr graduated from the Master of Global Affairs program in 2020. Before coming to the Keough School of Global Affairs, she served in the Jesuit Volunteer Corps at Women’s Resource Center in Pennsylvania, providing services to survivors of domestic violence and sexual assault. She also spent a year in the Maryknoll China Teachers Program, where she taught English at Jilin Medical University and worked with local grassroots organizations serving rural communities. Theresa holds a BA from Notre Dame in political science and Chinese. As a master of global affairs student, Theresa was the recipient of a Donald & Marilyn Keough Fellowship. In 2020, she was selected as a finalist in the US Presidential Management Fellowship program.

Anthony Guidotti

Anthony Guidotti

Sustainable Development, 2020

United States

Anthony Guidotti triple majored in economics, international studies, and justice and peace studies at the University of St. Thomas in St. Paul, Minnesota. After graduation, he spent a year serving abroad as a humanitarian missionary in 11 countries. He is passionate about the fusion of economic development and the peacemaking process within international policy making and hopes to help implement development processes that de-escalate conflict and improve the living conditions of their targeted populations. He has spent the last three and a half years as a lay minister in a diverse urban community north of Seattle. As a master of global affairs student, Anthony was the recipient of a Coca-Cola Global Affairs Fellowship.

Marisa León Gómez Sonet

Marisa León Gómez Sonet

International Peace Studies, 2020

Honduras

Marisa León-Gómez Sonet, a 2020 master of global affairs graduate, is the legislative associate for the immigration and refugee program at the Friends Committee on National Legislation. In this role, she works towards a more humane and dignified immigration and refugee system.

Marisa has worked with the Chicago Religious Leadership Network on Latin America on issues regarding US foreign policy to Latin American, human and immigration rights, and social justice. She also has also interned at the Auschwitz Institute for Peace and Reconciliation on genocide and mass atrocities prevention. Before coming to Notre Dame, Marisa interned at at the Trust for the Americas, an organization affiliated to the Organization of America States in Washington, DC, for economic and social inclusion in Latin America and the Caribbean. She holds a BA in global studies with an international development concentration. As a master of global affairs student, Marisa was the recipient of a Kroc Institute Fellowship.

Opinion: Immigration policy must look beyond the border (North American Congress on Latin America)

Brian Hickey

Brian Hickey

Global Affairs + Specialization (offered through 2022), 2020

United States

Brian Hickey most recently worked with migrants and refugee children in a school and center for street children in Djibouti. He also taught English literature and leadership at a Palestinian high school in the West Bank, served as a volunteer at the Indiana State Prison for several years, and spent the summer of 2015 in South Africa and Zambia working with a local nongovernmental organization. Brian holds a BS in business management and a minor in political science from Valparaiso University, where he was a student-athlete. As a master of global affairs student, he was the recipient of a Donald & Marilyn Keough Fellowship.

Mayra M. Garcia

Mayra M. Garcia

Sustainable Development, 2020

United States

Mayra Garcia served as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Peru, collaborating with nongovernmental organizations, local authorities, families, and students to improve water, sanitation, and hygiene practices in their communities. Mayra also has worked as a consultant at a private engineering firm and provided transportation design solutions to regional clients. She holds a BS in civil engineering from the University of Washington and speaks Spanish fluently. As a master of global affairs student, Mayra was the recipient of a Peace Corps Paul D. Coverdell Fellowship.


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