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Student Spotlights

Please join us in congratulating the class of 2017! As the academic year draws to a close, we are highlighting students graduating from across our programs.

Amartya Das graduated on Sunday with a bachelor’s degree in Mathematical and Computational Science and a minor in Global Studies with a focus on South Asian studies. “I've loved the breadth of classes I've been able to take even within my concentration,” he said. “My electives included a Bollywood film class & a class about the history of yoga.” Amartya’s capstone research through the global studies minor focused on the negative influence of politics in the higher education system in India and how that may be remedied.

After graduation, Amartya will be pursuing a master’s degree in Symbolic Systems at Stanford, before working at a management-consulting firm. Read more.

This weekend, Caroline Doyle will receive her B.A. in International Relations, with a focus on the history of nuclear weapons. She chose this focus area, because she thinks it is a “fascinating and frighteningly relevant topic.” During her time at Stanford, Caroline was a paid Research Assistant at the Hoover Institution, where she worked for Senior Fellow Russell Berman analyzing ISIS’s recruitment tactics and use of social media.

Caroline is most proud of being able to balance both athletics and academics at Stanford, where she was a two-time captain of the women's tennis team. Caroline, who was recognized by the Pac 12 as the scholar athlete of the year, says she is proud of how she was able to accomplish ... Read more.

Jian Yang Lum chose to study International Relations with a focus on international security, the Middle East, and Central Asia, because he cares strongly about terrorism and war in today’s world. Lum is also pursuing a coterminal master’s degree in statistics in order to learn how to make inferences out of data. His favorite course at Stanford was MS&E298/IPS 232 Hacking For Diplomacy, where he was able to work as part of a team of students tackling foreign policy challenges. “It's been a blast thinking of a problem such as online radicalism from a different perspective,” he said, “and seeing how to integrate skills from all across the startup spectrum (design, interviewing, pivoting etc.) to something I care deeply about. It really changed how I... Read more.

Kate Gasparro is a National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellow studying sustainable design and construction at Stanford. This Sunday, Kate will receive her M.A. in International Policy Studies (IPS), which she is pursuing simultaneously with a Ph.D. in Civil and Environmental Engineering. Kate’s favorite class at Stanford so far is PUBLPOL 303D: Applied Econometrics for Public Policy, because it incorporated different types of statistical strategies for analyzing policy and taught students how to navigate policy implications and understanding. 

For her IPS practicum project, Kate evaluated sustainable water service delivery in developing communities. Read more.

Farhan Kathawala graduated on June 18 with a B.A. in Computer Science and a minor in Global Studies with a focus on Islamic studies. He chose to study these two subjects because he loved the creativity of being able to create his own software, and wanted to combine the resources of Stanford and his own cultural and religious knowledge to make things about the Islamic World more known and accessible to others. A few of Farhan’s favorite courses include Islam, Iran and the West (POLISCI149S) with Abbas Milani – “I may never meet a more learned person in my life!” he said, or Poems, Poetry, and Worlds (COMPLIT121) with Vincent Barletta.

For his capstone project... Read more.

Kirsten Willer chose to study International Relations (IR) because it was a great blend of history and African studies classes with economics and statistics. “I loved how interdisciplinary it was, and how I could really focus on anything,” she said. Kirsten will be receiving her B.A. this weekend, with a focus on Africa, social/community development, and wellbeing. Kirsten studied abroad in both Paris and Cape Town. One highlight she recalls from Cape Town was hiking up Lion's Head to watch the sunset and then hiking down by the light of the full moon: “The view was magical!”

As an IR honors student, Kirsten wrote a thesis on citizenship challenges and resulting violence in sub-Saharan Africa. Read more.

Juanjo Lucci graduated with an M.A. in International Policy Studies (IPS) with a concentration in energy, environment and natural resources. Prior to Stanford, Juanjo worked at Argentina’s National Congress for the natural resources and international relations committees. Two of his favorite classes at Stanford were Understanding Energy (CEE207) and Democracy, Development and the Rule of Law (IPS 230) with Professor Francis Fukuyama. Juanjo was also a teaching assistant for Professor Beatriz Magaloni’s Poverty and Governance course (POLISCI 347G), which he says was one of the best experiences he had at Stanford.

Juanjo was also part of a research team that evaluated the professionalization of the Mexican Federal Police. Read more.

Sina Javidan-Nejad will be graduating this weekend with a B.A. in Political Science. Sina, who plans to work at Dropbox after graduation and eventually apply to law school, also completed a minor in global studies with a concentration on Iran. Sina chose to pursue a Global Studies Minor in Iranian studies because he wanted to better understand Iran’s geopolitical importance in the Middle East. “I wish to utilize my undergraduate studies in Political Science and Iranian Studies in order to hopefully contribute towards efforts that bring Iran back into the international community,” Sina said. His favorite part of the program was studying the Persian language, particularly being able to read news articles, governmental papers, poetry, and various types of literature. Read more.