When Patrick Calderon first heard that the University of Notre Dame’s brand-new Keough School of Global Affairs was launching a master of global affairs program, he was intrigued.
“It was clear to me that the Keough School was doing something that was really new and different,” said Calderon, who had just graduated from Notre Dame summa cum laude with degrees in political science and theology. “I had considered several other programs with excellent academic instruction and many successful graduates, but the Keough School’s focus on empowering marginalized populations really spoke to me.”
Now based in Vancouver, Canada, Calderon is among nearly 200 graduates of a now-flourishing master of global affairs program. The master of global affairs program is just one among many accomplishments that the Keough School of Global Affairs will celebrate as it marks its 10th anniversary beginning this year.
Housed in Jenkins Nanovic Halls, which opened in 2017, the Keough School of Global Affairs has reached many notable milestones. The master of global affairs program has graduated 182 students from more than 60 countries. The program includes three concentrations: sustainable development; international peace studies; and governance and policy, and it has provided in-depth opportunities for more than 100 students to participate in hands-on field experiences in 46 countries through its Integration Lab and peace studies internships.
Graduates like Jenna Ahn McGuire, a program support manager with Catholic Relief Services who focuses on Ethiopia, and who, like Calderon, was a member of the inaugural master of global affairs class, have taken full advantage of what the school has to offer.
“The Keough School has connected me with a world of opportunities to use my education and experience in service of marginalized populations,” McGuire said. “I’m grateful for the knowledge and moral compass it has provided, and I know that many future generations will benefit from the school’s commitment to cutting-edge scholarship in service of those who need it the most.”
In addition to supporting master’s students, the Keough School now offers a new undergraduate global affairs major with nearly 200 students enrolled. Created in response to consistent and growing interest from students, the global affairs major enables graduates to navigate the interconnected, multicultural world they will face upon graduation—and teaches them how to address global challenges that include climate change, resource wars and ungovernable flows of migrants and refugees.
Graduates of the Keough School’s PhD program, administered by its Kroc Institute for International Peace Studies, are consistently hired into tenure-track positions at competitive colleges and universities or into impactful research roles at international agencies. PhD students also have received prestigious fellowships from the National Institute of Health, the National Science Foundation, the Guggenheim Emerging Scholars Fellowship and the Social Sciences Research Council in Canada.
The hundreds of students coming through the Keough School are mentored and nurtured by its 70 faculty who bring expertise in more than 25 disciplines and global policy. These faculty and practitioners are leaders in their fields and bring a wealth of knowledge and expertise in poverty and inequality; sustainability and environmental justice; peace and conflict; and democracy and human rights. As part of the school’s global policy impact initiative, faculty utilize the school’s office in Washington, DC, which opened in 2018, to convene with policymakers, scholars and partners in translating research into policy.
Finally, the Keough School is now home to nine institutes and centers focused on international research, scholarship and education: the Ansari Institute for Global Engagement with Religion; the Kellogg Institute for International Studies; the Keough-Naughton Institute for Irish Studies; the Klau Institute for Civil & Human Rights; the Kroc Institute for International Peace Studies; the Liu Institute for Asia & Asian Studies, the McKenna Center for Human Development and Global Business; the Nanovic Institute for European Studies; and the Pulte Institute for Global Development.
“Looking back over the past decade, I am tremendously proud of what the Keough School has accomplished,” said Scott Appleby, Marilyn Keough Dean and founding dean of the Keough School. “From the appointment of first-rate faculty to the recruitment of our first students to the creation of two new degree programs, the school’s leadership team, faculty, and staff have much to be proud of. What began as a bold vision of university leaders backed by a generous gift from Donald R. Keough, a longtime trusted Notre Dame advisor and benefactor, is now a vibrant, thriving community of scholars and students from around the world.”
The heart of the Keough School’s mission—to advance integral human development—continues to animate the work of the school. The school’s commitment to upholding the dignity of the human person and seeking solutions that prioritize the common good are articulated anew in the Keough School’s Strategic Plan 2030. The new strategic plan sets forth a bold vision of “a policy school with a difference,” and sets ambitious goals to enhance the global influence of Notre Dame’s policy school through research, teaching and partnership.
“With a strong foundation now in place, the school is well positioned for continued flourishing,” said John T. McGreevy, the Charles and Jill Fischer Provost. “The Keough School plays a central role in advancing Notre Dame as the leading global Catholic research university. I’m confident that in the next 10 years and beyond, the Keough School of Global Affairs will thrive in its scholarship, policy impact, and efforts to train future generations of global leaders to be a force for good in the world.”
Appleby will step down as founding dean on June 30 after leading the school for 10 years, and the university has launched an international search to find a successor.
Top photo: The master of global affairs Class of 2019, the inaugural graduating class of the Keough School of Global Affairs.