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Global Studies Newsletter

Spring 2016

Congratulations, 2016 Graduates!

The Curriculum in Global Studies held its Spring 2016 commencement ceremony on Sunday, May 8, 2016 in Memorial Hall. It was a wonderful celebration of more than two hundred students graduating with a bachelor’s or a master’s degree in Global Studies. Read more here.

Global Studies MA Program Celebrates Its First Graduating Class

We celebrated the first graduates from the Global Studies MA program at our commencement ceremony on May 8. We are very impressed with the energy and integrity that this first cohort of MA students brought to their studies, teaching and research — and also to their service to the Carolina, Triangle, and global communities. We wish them every success as they move on to their next adventures! Read about our Global Studies MA program and graduating cohort here.

Message from the Chair, Milada Anna Vachudova

We are very proud of all of our graduates. We have seen how much hard work, creativity and dedication they have poured into all of their pursuits at Carolina. We hope our university has nurtured a sense of purpose, an appreciation of diversity, and an intellectual curiosity that will enrich their lives forever. May they take their next steps with confidence, and with a commitment to public service here in North Carolina and around the globe. We bring you in this newsletter just a sampling of the inspiring endeavors of our students, our alumni and our faculty this spring.

Featured Student: Zoe Sakin ’16

The Global Studies major is one of the reasons I chose Carolina, and I am forever grateful that I did. Over three years later, I feel that Global Studies has given me the opportunity to explore all of my interests without limits. The flexibility of the major allowed me to change my course of study multiple times, add a second major seamlessly, receive full credit from study abroad, and travel to conduct independent research. Read more here.

 Featured Student: Sara Khan ’16 

An inspiring leader and gifted student, Sara Khan has graduated as a double major in Global Studies and Biology with a minor in Chemistry. She was selected as one of two undergraduate recipients of the University Diversity Award, given to individuals at UNC who have made a significant contribution to the enhancement, support, and/or furtherance of diversity on the campus and in the community. She also received the Anne Scaff Award for Internationalization of the Curriculum and University. Read more here.

Featured Alumna: Caroline Zullo ’15 

A Global Studies and Political Science double major, Caroline Zullo was recently selected for the Carnegie Junior Fellows Program. She will serve as UNC’s first recipient of the one-year award and is one of only 14 students chosen from an applicant pool of almost 200. This award provides Caroline with the opportunity to work with the Carnegie Endowment in Washington, DC as a paid research assistant to the endowment’s senior associates. Read more here.



London Calling! Workshop at King’s College London 

Four Global Studies MA students traveled to London to present their research projects at the joint UNC-King’s College London (KCL) Graduate Student Workshop on May 4.  Four students in the King’s College MA program in Science and International Development were also selected to present their research at the event. The workshop was held in the School of Global Affairs at King’s College London. It was a wonderful opportunity for our MA students to present their research in a professional setting, and receive feedback on their projects from faculty discussants and fellow participants. Read more about the London workshop here.

Capstone and Thesis Projects of Global Studies MA Students, Class of 2016

Our second year Global Studies MA students worked all year on their capstone projects—original research projects led by a faculty supervisor and defended in front of a faculty committee at the end of the spring 2016 semester. Read about the individual capstone projects here.

Internship Highlight: Annas Shaker at the United States Committee of Refugees and Immigrants 

At the beginning of the spring 2016 semester, Global Studies MA student Annas Shaker joined the staff of the United States Committee for Refugees and Immigrants (USCRI) in Raleigh as a refugee healthcare access intern.  USCRI is the major refugee resettlement agency in Wake County, overseeing the resettlement of hundreds of refugees each year and works to integrate refugees within their community and ensure access to basic needs. Annas was responsible for helping refugees understand their health care rights and aid their navigation of the NC health care system. Read more here.

Graduate Student News

The Global Studies MA students pursued many exciting opportunities this spring including attending conferences, presenting their research on campus, and organizing opportunities for professionalization and skills-based learning. They also received many fellowships and awards. Here are some highlights.

Featured Alumna: Melani McAlister ’84 

When I was at UNC in the early 1980s, there was not yet a Global Studies major or anything like it. I put together my own major in “International Studies” after I got the bug for learning about the Middle East during a summer internship. I’d come to UNC as a Morehead scholar (hailing from a small town in NC where few people seemed interested in the rest of the world), and in the summer of 1982 I interned at Newsweek. There, I was assigned to be a fact checker on stories dealing with the Israeli invasion of Lebanon. I was hooked. Read more here.

Featured Alumnus: Dave Mullaney ’05

In 2005 Dave Mullaney graduated from UNC with a double major in Economics and International Studies and completed a Master of International Affairs at Columbia University’s School of International and Public Affairs. Dave currently works at the Rocky Mountain Institute (RMI), a Colorado-based research and consulting organization focused on cost-effective measures to increase energy efficiency and the use of renewable energy. At RMI, Dave has worked on studies exploring how energy use and carbon emissions can be reduced through technically mature, cost-effective measures for the Chinese economy through 2050. Read more here.

Alumni Updates

On November 10, twenty-two undergraduates attended the first Google Hangout with Global Studies alumni. The event gave students an opportunity to hear from three Global Studies alumni who pursued different paths after Carolina. Learn more here.

Faculty Spotlight: Michal Osterweil

Having the opportunity to teach “Social Change in Times of Crisis: Knowledge, Action and Ontology” with my colleague and mentor Arturo Escobar (Anthropology) has been a unique and inspiring experience. Having designed it in 2011, this is actually the second time we are teaching the course, with some major changes. The idea for the course originally came from our shared research and commitment to understanding social movements, and the emergence of what we began to term “a politics and theory of relationality”—that is, the emergence of a new language and practice of politics emerging from a variety of disciplines and non-academic sites— ranging from social movements, to the natural sciences, to business and management—that emphasize non-dual, often non-modernist understandings of both reality and social change. Read more here.

Faculty Spotlight: Elizabeth Olson

The first time that she learned about the real challenges faced by “young carers,” Global Studies joint faculty member Elizabeth (Betsy) Olson was working in Glasgow, Scotland, on a project about youth spirituality based at the University of Edinburgh. Through a participatory filmmaking project, Betsy partnered with a group of young people who had caregiving responsibilities at home for family members with chronic or acute illness, disability, or other medical conditions. Though being a young carer can be rewarding, it can also be physically and mentally exhausting, with many children providing more than two hours of care every weekday and more than five hours every weekend day. In the UK and other countries, young carers are recognized by governments and charity organizations as vulnerable youth, and receive essential social supports. But in the US, ‘youth caregivers’ are unrecognized by the government or the wider society, with some very modest exceptions. Read about her research.

Support the Curriculum in Global Studies

We are grateful for all gifts to the Curriculum to help students pursue global opportunities, near and far.