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.



Matthew Bocanumenth

Matthew Bocanumenth

International Peace Studies, 2024

United States and Colombia

Matthew Bocanumenth recently served as a program associate at the Washington Office on Latin America, where he supported human rights research and advocacy on matters related to Colombia and the US-Mexico border. His work helped monitor Colombia’s peace process with a specialized focus on Afro-descendant, Indigenous, women’s, and LGBTQ+ rights. In 2021, he volunteered with Annunciation House and the Hope Border Institute in El Paso, Texas to help provide a safe, orderly, and humane welcome to thousands of asylum seekers affected by the Remain in Mexico policy.

Matthew holds a bachelor’s degree in international and area studies and political science from New College of Florida. His undergraduate thesis examined an urgent issue for the peace process in Colombia and for post-conflict stabilization in general: collectively reintegrating former combatants of the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia into civil society. Matthew’s research interests include gender-inclusive peacebuilding, transitional justice, and human mobility. As a master of global affairs student, he is the recipient of a Kroc Institute Fellowship.

Mikaela Bona

Mikaela Bona

Global Affairs + Specialization (offered through 2022), 2022

The Philippines

Mikaela has expertise in qualitative political research, journalism, political communication, and development work. As a former editor-in-chief for a Filipino think tank, a college representative for over 2,000 students, and a researcher, she has a wide skill set: writing and editing political features, lobbying for institutional reform that reduce tuition for university students, working closely with the Filipino government on migrant and labor rights, organizing demonstrations. Mikaela has conducted internationally-funded fieldwork on coastal city resilience and research on BIPOC rights, women’s empowerment, unpaid care work, labor migration, education, and voting.

Mikaela holds a master’s degree in political science from Ateneo de Manila University and graduated with honors and minors in economics and Southeast Asian studies. Mikaela has been awarded competitive study grants in Japan and Brunei Darussalam. With diverse research interests tied together by a passion for gender, intersectionality, economic development, and poverty alleviation, she hopes to develop analytical skills to create actionable steps for inclusive change. Mikaela is a recipient of a Liu Institute for Asia and Asian Studies Fellowship.

Halkano Boru 

Halkano Boru 

International Peace Studies, 2024

Kenya

Halkano Boru is a peace and conflict prevention practitioner with extensive experience in the support, development, and implementation of governance, peacebuilding, and conflict prevention, including projects preventing and countering violent extremism targeting Northern Kenya and Southern Ethiopia (Oromia region). Halkano graduated from Masinde Muliro University of Science and Technology with a BS in disaster management and international diplomacy. He has served as peace and cohesion cluster coordinator for the United Nations Development Programme in Kenya, where he worked to implement the Deepening Foundations for Peacebuilding and Community Security program with government agencies. 

Halkano is skilled and experienced in conducting participatory research on natural resource management, conflict, governance, and violent extremism. He is also an alumnus of the YALI Regional Leadership Center, East Africa program, a US Department of State initiative that trains young African leaders. At the Keough School, Halkano plans to study the intersection of violent extremism, non-state armed groups, organized crimes, migration, illicit financial flows, and state fragility. As a master of global affairs student, Halkano is the recipient of a Thomas D. McCloskey Peace Fellowship. 

Elizabeth Boyle

Elizabeth Boyle

International Peace Studies, 2022

United States

Elizabeth Boyle graduated cum laude from the University of Notre Dame in 2020, earning a bachelor’s degree in political science and international peace studies. As a student she studied and worked on interreligious peacebuilding, served as student body president, fought for the rights of sexual assault survivors with the nonprofit organization Know Your IX, and was the recipient of the Yarrow Award in Peace Studies. 

Elizabeth’s religious peacebuilding and civil rights work has led to internships at Religions for Peace, the US Commission on Civil Rights, USAID, and the US Department of State. She has traveled to Nepal, Qatar, and Oman, engaging in scriptural reasoning and interreligious dialogue through the Kroc Institute’s Madrasa Discourses research initiative and other Notre Dame opportunities. She also served as a seminar leader for Notre Dame’s Center for Social Concerns, leading teams of Notre Dame undergraduates through immersive seminar service experiences throughout the United States. Elizabeth is the recipient of a Kroc Institute Fellowship and an Ansari Institute Fellowship.

 

Catherine Bruno

Catherine Bruno

International Peace Studies, 2023

United States

Catherine Bruno served with the Jesuit Volunteer Corps in southern Peru, where she taught English and established a reading club for primary school students at Colegio Fe y Alegria. She also led a girl’s group, meeting weekly with young teens to discuss challenges and facilitate activities to promote independence and empowerment

Catherine also volunteered with Encuentros Servicio Jesuita de la Soldiaridad, supporting Venezuelan migrants in Peru through access to stable housing, job training, education, and legal and health services. After returning to the United States, she worked as the resettlement case manager for the Nationalities Service Center in Philadelphia, providing essential support services to refugees during their first ninety days in the United States. Catherine holds a BS in international studies and French and a concentration in peace and justice from the University of Scranton. She also is certified in trauma-informed case management. As a master of global affairs student, Catherine is the recipient of a Kroc Institute Fellowship.

Andrew Caffro 

Andrew Caffro 

Sustainable Development, 2022

United States

Andrew spent more than five years in a leadership role with an international relief and development nongovernmental organization (NGO) that advances the work of local NGOs in eight South and Southeast Asian countries. His responsibilities have included coordinating projects, forming and growing partnerships, communicating impact to stakeholders, and overseeing organizational operations. Prior to this role, he lived in India for a year on a Fulbright grant and worked as a research assistant at the University of Pennsylvania.

Andrew studied molecular biology and business at Grove City College, graduating summa cum laude. As an undergraduate, he spent a summer gaining exposure to international development work in India and led three student volunteer service trips to Providence, Rhode Island, where he worked on urban poverty issues. These experiences helped shape his academic and professional interests, which include poverty alleviation, humanitarian aid, nonprofit management, fragile states, and sustainability. Andrew is the recipient of a Donald & Marilyn Keough Fellowship.

Patrick Calderon

Patrick Calderon

Global Affairs + Specialization (offered through 2022), 2019

Canada

Patrick Calderon recently worked for a Washington, DC-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. As a master of global affairs student, he was the recipient of a Samuel and Kathleen Awad Global Affairs Fellowship.

David Campos

David Campos

Governance and Policy, 2024

United States

David Campos earned his BA with highest distinction in public policy and history from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 2021. As recipient of the Matthew and Michael L. Boyatt Award, David studied Korean political relations at Korea University. He also received the Kathy Arnold Taft Award for Leadership in Education Policy, which recognized his contribution to discussions regarding universal access to a sound basic education within the United States schooling system.  

David has extensive experience in the nonprofit sector and has worked with several organizations including Children’s Aid, North Carolina Early Education Coalition, and Immersion for Spanish Language Acquisition – North Carolina. Campos’s work has impacted the types of resources children from high-need neighborhoods are exposed to and has encouraged hundreds of minority students to pursue a higher education. He also has helped facilitate conversations among experts across the nation to produce better ways to accommodate English language learners, an issue that affected him personally as a child of Colombian and Costa Rican descent. As a master of global affairs student, he is the recipient of a Pulte Family Fellowship.


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