Research Intern, Foreign Policy and Defence Program
What is your educational background?
I am currently a junior at the University of Pittsburgh pursuing a joint degree in Mathematics and Economics with a minor in American Politics. Throughout my studies, I have gained an appreciation for empirical analysis and its ability to provide insight into complex social phenomena. I am especially interested in the field of Environmental Economics and its comprehensive and quantitative approach to solving problems related to climate change and pollution. I hope to use the theory I have learned thus far to further my studies in the field and pursue a PhD in order to conduct research of my own.
What have you been working on in your time at USSC?
I am incredibly grateful for the role I have been given in the Foreign Policy and Defence program. Throughout my time at USSC, I have worked alongside foreign policy experts on projects relating to defence strategy in the Indo-Pacific and the globalisation of research and development. By assisting a research fellow in preliminary research, I have refined my data analysis skills and learned quite a bit about topics that were unfamiliar to me before the internship commenced.
My experience at USSC has taken me out of my comfort zone and encouraged me to think creatively in order to solve problems on a global scale. Under the guidance of experienced researchers, I have been able to gain an international perspective on issues that I had previously seen through a domestic lens.
What has been your favourite part about living in Sydney?
I come from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania which is known as one of the cloudiest cities in the United States, and it is no coincidence I chose to study in Sydney, where the sun seems to come out almost every day. I have tried my best to take advantage of the comfortable weather by exploring the Blue Mountains and Royal National Park, which are only a train ride away from the city. With a combination of a lively music scene, proximity to natural ecosystems, a diverse population, and a seemingly never-ending supply of great restaurants, Sydney has been an ideal place to call home.
What do you hope to do with your experience from the USSC?
When I first arrived at USSC, the Foreign Policy and Defence program had released a report that was picked up by an immense number of press outlets and even caught the attention of the President of the US. Just a couple weeks later, they were deep in preliminary research for their next big project. I hope to take that inquisitive spirit with me back home as I begin to apply to graduate school for Economics. At USSC, I have acquired new research skills and a global perspective that will shape my career path moving forward.