Academics and Education

After graduating, I boarded a plane and flew over the North Pacific Ocean to the world of the Tea Ceremony and the Tokugawa Shogunate. I served as an Assistant English Teacher in Saitama, Japan, as part of the Japanese Exchange and Teaching Program. I had never done any teaching before JET, but I thought I might be somewhat of a natural at it, given that both of my parents are teachers. I fell in love with Japan and grew to have deep respect forJapanese culture. While on JET, I also traveled to Nepal, and I've been a globetrotter ever since. I returned to the US after one year, and went straight back to PENN GSE to get my teaching credentials. I've been a teacher and a wrestling coach at New Rochelle High School (Westchester, New York) ever since-- 12 years! My specialty is Global History and Geography, and I am currently teaching a Senior Elective called "Facing History."

-Jon Beck, Class of 1994


My experience as an IR major has shaped my career to this day. In particular, my study abroad experience in France during my junior year of the IR program inspired me to pursue a Ph.D. in history. I am now working as a professional historian specializing in the history of 20th century France.

-Eric Reed, Class of 1991


I was attracted to IR at Penn because of the interdisciplinary nature of the program. I arrived at Penn already interested in learning more about the Middle East. IR provided me with the opportunity to explore a variety of different critical and disciplinary frameworks through which to engage in my study of the region. By my senior year I had discovered that I was most interested in the approaches offered by the humanities--especially literature and history. After working for a couple of years for a small international marketing firm in New York City, I eventually pursued a PhD in Comparative Literature at the University of Michigan with a specialization in modern Arabic and Hebrew literature. I am presently an associate professor in the Department of Near Eastern Studies at Cornell University.

-Deborah Starr, Class of 1990


After receiving my MA and PhD in IR in 1974, 1977, I went on from Penn to study at Claremont Graduate School, and then taught at the college level for three years. From 1980-1989, I served as an American diplomat in Mexico, Taiwan, China and as a foreign service officer in the US Department of State's Bureau of Intelligence and Research, Office of Soviet and Eastern European Affairs, where I served as an analyst of Soviet foreign policy toward Latin America. Since 1989, I have been teaching at a college in New York, where I established and have served as the director for the political science, international relations, intercultural studies and international studies majors and minors. I was the recipient of a Rotary International Fund Ambassadorial Fellowship to teach and research in Russia in 1997. In 2004, I was awarded a Fulbright Fellowship to teach and research in the Caucasus countries: Armenia, Georgia and Azerbaijan.

-David Benedict, PhD, 1974


After Penn, I went on to get a master's degree from University of Virginia in foreign affairs (another name for IR). I went to work for Chase Manhattan Bank as an economist covering my regional specialty, Asia. My undergrad and grad degrees surely helped me get this first job, which I loved, as well as my subsequent jobs. While being at Chase I started working on my Ph. D in economics at NYU (though I never finished). After 13 years at Chase, I joined GE, in the corporate planning department, doing country risk analysis (econ and political analysis) on foreign countries where GE had business or investments. I next joined Mellon Bank in Pittsburgh, where I eventually became head of the country risk assessment area, before moving into my last post there, as SVP in charge of portfolio management (analyzing risk in Mellon's loan portfolio). My corporate career entailed lots of foreign travel, which I loved. After ending my corporate career, I joined the University of Pittsburgh's Graduate School of Public and International Affairs as a professor, teaching Economics, International Trade and International Finance. I also taught occasional courses at the Katz Graduate School of Business at Pitt and participated in a Katz program teaching in Guayaquil, Ecuador.

I did not go into the Foreign Service though that tempted me at the time. Instead I took the duller road of studying law and, immediately after law school, teaching law at the University of Chicago. From there, after one other job I became Dean of the Law School at Santa Clara University. In the eleven years between my graduation from Penn and my assumption of the deanship, no one could have found any distinction between my career path and that of any other College graduate without an IR major. Once I became responsible for a law school, however, that changed. I started international summer programs for law students (not only those at SCU) in foreign countries I pioneered in that area by providing legal employment simultaneously with classes and shrugging off the then standard use of U.S. faculty often teaching a subject with no international content and unrelated to their foreign locale. I used professors local to the program and international topics. In both respects, I had to battle with the set ideas of the American Bar Association accrediting group. I am quite proud of the fact that our programs went from deviant status to becoming the model for the now required connection between foreign programs and content to which the location was relevant. Finally, unlike almost all other law schools at the time, I recognized the potential of Asia and did not totally rely on European countries. That gave us pick of the best places in Asia: Japan (Tokyo University), Hong Kong (University of Hong Kong), South Korea (Seoul National University), Bangkok (Chulalonghorn University) etc. We still did well in Europe, also grounding our programs at Oxford University, the International Institute of Human Rights in Strasbourg and establishing programs in places more on the cutting edge of law such as the program in Budapest established almost on the day the Russians left Hungary. After I left the deanship, I served out my time at SCU as Director of its Institute of International and Comparative Law. We now have the largest law school program in summer abroad sessions, a thriving student exchanged program with international institutions, a law masters program in International law and we allow all our students who wish to do so to have a recorded emphasis in international law. Looking back at all of that, it becomes clear to me that the foundation for my later work was clearly set in the IR program at Penn.

-George J. Alexander, Class of 1949

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Business and the Private Sector

I graduated in 2006 with a double major in both International Relations and Economics. From Philadelphia I moved to Los Angeles, where I joined Lehman Brothers' investment banking division to provide coverage of private equity clients, build leveraged buyout models and perform myriad other financial analyses. While I will continue to work for Lehman Brothers another year, I will be moving to another firm in Los Angeles, Ares Management, to work in the firm's private equity division next year.

While I don't think that there is one appropriate background for finance, I strongly believe that International Relations prepared me for finance by developing my analytical abilities and writing skills. Writing my thesis, sorting through competing academic interpretations of history and global systems and studying in a foreign country—all hallmarks of my experience in International Relations--served not only to sharpen my analytical capabilities, but also to sharpen my writing, improve my understanding of different cultures and domestic policies and make me a more well-rounded individual.

-James, Class of 2006


I received my BA with a major in international relations in May of 2004. After that I joined a Swiss bank, UBS, as an analyst within the investment banking division. The specific team I joined was the Latin America Group. A major reason I decided to join this group was because of my IR major where I wrote my thesis on the Argentine debt collapse. I actually had the amazing opportunity to work closely with Argentina to restructure its sovereign debt, which felt like a culmination of my thesis. I continued working on international deals within the Latin American Group from 2004 to 2006, and then switched my focus to financial institutions within the U.S.I joined Goldman, Sachs & Co. in 2006 and am currently an associate in the Consumer Retail Group at Goldman. I'm still very interested in IR and look forward to working in international business.

-Pierre Revol, Class of 2004


Since graduating from Penn in 2000, I have been working in investment banking and specifically in the debt capital markets. My clients are US financial institutions who enlist our help in accessing the European debt markets. Despite having a US domiciled client base, I am currently based in London in order to be close to the European markets. Accessing capital off shore is increasingly important for US finance companies and I spend much of my time meeting with European investors to help sell credit product for our US based clients. My background in International Relations has proven to be a solid foundation for my current role.

-Sarah Kanes, Class of 2000


I graduated from Penn in 1999 with a dual-major in IR and Asian & Middle Eastern Studies. Since 1999, and have been working at Diamond Management & Technology Consultants, a strategy consulting firm with an emphasis on technology innovation. For large multinational companies in the telecommunications, high-tech, financial services, and retail industries, I have helped to define and execute strategic plans, including product/service development, market entry, new venture planning, merger integration, large-scale technology implementation, and organizational transformation initiatives. From 2003 - 2005, I returned to graduate school at the University of Michigan where I pursued a joint-degree (MBA/MA) in business administration and Asian studies. While at Michigan, I received a Foreign Language & Area Studies Fellowship from the US Department of Education for a cultural immersion / language study program in Kyoto, Japan. I returned to Diamond after graduating from Michigan and am currently assisting the City of New York to define a municipal broadband and digital inclusion strategy. The knowledge and skills that I gained as an IR major have been invaluable in my career. For example, my knowledge of world affairs has enhanced my ability to work across cultures and geographies. More importantly, however, the critical analysis, research and writing skills that I developed as an undergraduate have been directly transferable to the business world.

-Neil Harrison, Class of 1999


I am currently a Vice President with LPL Financial Services. We are the largest independent broker/dealer in the country, and I am responsible for our recruiting efforts for the west coast. Prior to my current position, I was the Regional Director for Northern CA for 4 years. Before LPL, I worked for the asset management arm of Nationwide for 3 years. My initial job after Penn was with Towers Perrin. My degree from Penn has come up in my interview with all three firms, and I believe it played a valuable role in helping me advance quickly at each firm.

-Mike Murray, Class of 1998


Following graduation, I joined Towers Perrin as a strategic consultant to a number of large corporations. Due to my interest in foreign languages and culture, I was sent to do project work with a large American client who needed to research the Latin American Market. My employer agreed to sponsor me for language training in Spanish which drove my desire to continue to learn more about doing business in Latin America. This lead to my pursuit of a joint MBA/MA through Wharton and the Lauder Institute of International studies at the University of Pennsylvania where my focus was on Latin America and Spanish. Upon graduation I joined Accenture's Strategic Consulting practice where I focused on retail and consumer products, often working with multinational clients in their overseas offices. I later moved to an internal marketing position with American Express. Since starting a family, I have pursued a part-time career as a freelance marketing strategy consultant. I have worked for a number of clients, though my most interesting have been teaching as a member of the professional faculty for the Global Consulting Practicum at Wharton, and my current work with a foreign language company that provides global language and culture training to executives.

-Lisa Tretler, Class of 1994


After graduating from Penn, I pursued a Master of Science in Foreign Service degree from Georgetown University, concentrating in US Foreign Policy and Diplomacy and Russian Area Studies. While at Georgetown, I interned at several organizations focusing on Russia/Eurasia issues—for Zbigniew Brzezinski at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, and at the Kennan Institute for Advanced Russian Studies, the Central and East European Law Initiative (of the ABA), and the US Information Agency. I studied twice in Moscow, Russia—during my junior year (spring semester) at Penn and the summer between graduate school years—and acquired professional level Russian capability.

Before graduating from Georgetown, I applied to teach English with the Peace Corps (slated for Central Asia) and had interviewed for two analyst positions with the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA). Though very different opportunities, both appealed to me because of their tie to Russian/Eurasian affairs. I also applied to several jobs in the field of international education, specifically to manage study abroad and scholarship programs in Prague and Moscow. The hiring process was slow after graduation, and from 1995-1996 I worked for Penn’s Office of International Programs as the Study Abroad Admissions Coordinator.

I eventually chose to work for DIA because of the growth potential in the particular position I was offered. In 1996, I joined a newly-formed office dedicated to Russia/Eurasia issues. During almost seven years at DIA, I held a variety of analytic positions, including serving on task forces supporting US military operations and defense policymakers. I traveled extensively in Russia/Eurasia and Europe. I also pursued a second graduate degree—a Master of Science in Strategic Intelligence—through the Joint Military Intelligence College (now National Defense Intelligence College). In 2003, I was recruited by a former colleague to work at a small consulting firm in northern Virginia, CENTRA Technology, Inc. I am currently a Senior Analyst managing outreach and analysis contracts for customers in the US national security community.

-Marianne B, Class of 1993


I started at Citibank as a currency and interest rate derivatives dealer, rose to Managing Director and Head of North American FX Short Term Interest Rate Trading. I moved to Bank of America in 2004 as Global Head of FX Short Term Interest Rate Trading. Then I moved with the Bank to London in January 2007 to manage Foreign Exchange in Europe, the Middle East and Africa.

-Vincent DeLorenzo, IR and Wharton, Class of 1993


I currently serve as a Congressional lobbyist for IBM in Washington, D.C. I have had an interesting and internationally focused career since leaving Penn, and my IR major significantly shaped my graduate study and career path.

Following my graduation from Penn, I attended The George Washington University and received my Master of Arts in East Asian Studies. I decided to pursue this degree as a result of a non-western history/politics class on modern Chinese politics (1950-present) that I took during my junior year at Penn with Professor Goldstein. Following that class, I became fascinated with contemporary Chinese politics and economics, so it was a pivotal class in my undergraduate career. I also spent the Spring semester of my junior year in Washington, D.C., interning for a think tank that focused on international policy as a result of meeting the think tank's executive on Penn's campus during an event the previous Fall. When I began at GW in 1993, I got an internship with the U.S.-China Business Council in Washington, and I stayed there through my two years of grad school and then was hired on full-time. I was there a total of 5 1/2 years. The focus of this organization is to assist U.S. companies that are doing business in China. I wrote for their publications and provided consulting services to their member companies. You can find them on the web at:

In 1998, my husband and I moved to Moscow, Russia. Since we were both international policy people, it was a natural move for us. I worked at the American Chamber of Commerce as a senior policy advisor for about a year out of our 2 1/2 years there. My job was to be the liaison between our business community members of AmCham and the U.S. government.

Following that, I moved back to Washington, D.C., where I got a job as a manager of international affairs with the Telecommunications Industry Association. I did trade policy, covered the International Telecommunication Union and conducted many international policy-related activities for about 4 years there. It was my last 1 1/2 years at TIA when I started to cover domestic policy issues and eventually moved over to work on legislative activities with Capitol Hill.

I joined IBM in January, 2007, and the primary focus of my job is to serve as one of our Capitol Hill lobbyists. I lobby on behalf of greater funding for basic research, math and science education, as well as investment in health information technology. I work with our international teams, both here and in Washington, D.C., and I even get to work closely with Penn's federal relations staff in Washington. Having graduated from Penn about 14 1/2 years ago, I still have a long career ahead of me, but my education and the experiences I had while at Penn (both as an IR major and as an active participant in Model UN) shaped me forever.

-Meredith Singer, Class of 1993


I commissioned as a Logistics Officer, US Army from Penn ROTC. I served at various posts in the US and on a Logistics Support Group team in Taegu, South Korea, coordinating exercises with the South Korean and Japanese Armed Forces. Transitioned to Accenture in 1998 and consulted on various engagements in the US and UK. I have spent the last 5 years in the global alliances division and currently work as an alliance director for Accenture's Energy business unit. I spend 90% of my time doing business development and supporting projects outside the United States, primarily in emerging markets such as Eastern Europe, SE Asia, and Latin America.

-Amy S, BA, Class of 1992


Ann Wyman is currently the Senior Economist in Citigroup's Economic and Political Strategies (EPS) Group, which provides global macroeconomic and political views to Citigroup's bankers and their clients in order to support strategic business decisions. Her recent work has focused on a variety of subject areas, including the global business implications of climate change, the evolution of emerging markets capital flows and the rise of Asian and Middle Eastern sovereign wealth funds. Prior to joining EPS, Ann was the Head of Economic and Market Analysis for the emerging markets of Central and Eastern Europe, Middle East and Africa at Citigroup in London. In that post, she managed a team of economists producing sovereign research for dissemination to Citigroup's fixed income, foreign exchange and equity clients, along with firm's own proprietary desk, traders, and sales force and origination/syndication departments. Ann also spent several years as Citigroup's lead economist covering Turkey, Nigeria and other Middle Eastern and African countries. She received her Master of International Affairs degree from the Columbia University School of International and Public Affairs in New York, and her undergraduate degree from the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia. She is fluent in French and Arabic.

-Ann Wyman, Class of 1992


I moved to Cabo San Lucas, Mexico in December of 1991 to think about attending law school in fall of 1992. After several margaritas, I realized the world did not need another attorney, and I decided to focus on business. The economy was pretty bad in the US...The weather was great in Cabo, so I began my international hands on business education by running a restaurant and bar south of the border. After opening a few Mrs. Fields cookie franchises, I also worked as US Consular Agent for Baja California South (1994-1997). As Cabo grew, the State Department needed a local US citizen to handle emergency citizen services.

In 1997 I opened my first restaurant, "Senor Greenberg's Mexicatessen", and resigned the consular position in order to focus on my business. The "NY deli/Mexican diner" concept worked in Cabo, and I will open my third Senor Greenberg's location in December 2007. In 2001, once I trained a management team to handle daily operation of the restaurants, I partnered with an International telecommunications group as Regional Director of Mexican operations. The past couple of years I have also spent significant time pursuing real estate investment opportunities in Southern Baja. My wife is from Mazatlan, my son was born in Cabo and my businesses and investments are almost entirely in a foreign country. I began my "international" interest with an IR degree from PENN, and I continue to "relate internationally" today.

-David Greenberg, Class of 1991


I graduated in 1991 with a BA in IR. Following graduation I decided I wanted be in NY and pursue publishing. I wound up at PCWeek Magazine. It was there I became very interested in marketing and how effective it was to use detailed information to target specific users. I continued on this path for four years before I applied to business school. I thought an MBA would allow me to take my interest in business to the next level as well as expose me to new business areas. I receive my MBA from Wharton in 1997. The internet was just getting hot and I decided to take a job in Boston with Fidelity Investments in the Online Brokerage marketing. Financial services were at the forefront of establishing on-line business models. In my five years there I was working on everything from on-line advertising to product development to partner marketing. After Fidelity I was back to New York working at Depository Trust and Clearing Corp. (DTCC) which is in a completely different area of financial services. My focus is now on infrastructure-related products and services for the securities industry. I look for new business opportunities, many of which involve the globalization of the industry. In other words I look to make it easier to process trades across borders. I have been at DTCC for five years. I have been married for 12 years and I have 2 children, boys ages 5 and 8.

-Lisa Meiselman, Class of 1991


Upon graduating with a BA in International Relations & Economics, I took a position as an Executive Assistant to the CEO of a $250 million wireless computer company (through a family introduction). Over the course of 3 years, I took on multiple product and industry marketing positions for this high tech company, working both in Western Europe, Australia and the U.S. As I saw windows of opportunity, I positioned myself to take on new responsibilities and to learn different parts of the business.

During my 2 year MBA at the University of California, Berkeley, I took on 2 internships – both a summer internship at Intel Corporation and a 2nd year internship at EFI, both in corporate marketing and marketing research. Following my graduation, I joined Siebel Systems in 1998 as an Alliance Manager. Over 6 years, I worked in Alliances and Product Marketing – launching new businesses and developing new software product lines. My last position at Siebel in 2003/2004 was General Manager of the $100+ million Public Sector division.

After 18 months of consulting for a venture capital firm, I took on a VP, Marketing position at PowerLight Corporation in the solar power industry. PowerLight was a $250 million global solar power systems integrator, and we were purchased by SunPower Corporation in January, 2007. I currently run Corporate Marketing for the combined companies, a global $750+ million solar power manufacturer and integrator. More than anything, my International Relations and Economics degrees helped teach me how to research, write and think critically. There is no substitute for effective communications in the business world – from writing to presenting to influencing others.

-Brian Stone, Class of 1989


During my 2 year MBA at the University of California, Berkeley, I took on 2 internships – both a summer internship at Intel Corporation and a 2nd year internship at EFI, both in corporate marketing and marketing research. Following my graduation, I joined Siebel Systems in 1998 as an Alliance Manager. Over 6 years, I worked in Alliances and Product Marketing – launching new businesses and developing new software product lines. My last position at Siebel in 2003/2004 was General Manager of the $100+ million Public Sector division.

After 18 months of consulting for a venture capital firm, I took on a VP, Marketing position at PowerLight Corporation in the solar power industry. PowerLight was a $250 million global solar power systems integrator, and we were purchased by SunPower Corporation in January, 2007. I currently run Corporate Marketing for the combined companies, a global $750+ million solar power manufacturer and integrator. More than anything, my International Relations and Economics degrees helped teach me how to research, write and think critically. There is no substitute for effective communications in the business world – from writing to presenting to influencing others.

-Brian Stone, Class of 1989

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Graduate School

I graduated with a double-major, in IR and AMES (with a focus on China) in 2004. Immediately after graduating I moved to DC, where after a few months of job-searching I was obtained a position as a Staff Assistant in the DC office of Senator Rick Santorum. I realized fairly quickly that I would need further education to have an impact on the policy world, and so applied to graduate school that same year. In 2005 I left the Senate office to begin a two-year master's program at the Johns Hopkins University Nitze School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS). While there I interned for a business magazine in Taiwan and for Foreign Policy magazine in DC. I'm currently on a one-year research fellowship at The National Bureau of Asian Research in Seattle, Washington, researching Chinese banking reforms and working on a number of other programs and publications. I'm not yet sure where I'll be headed after the fellowship concludes, but possibilities include US government work back in DC, a publication focusing on international affairs, and consulting. The IR program at Penn definitely played a big role in enabling me to reach this point. The program at SAIS is very focused on economics; I would likely not have gotten in had I not had the serious economics coursework that the Penn program requires. Having written an honors thesis earned me instant credibility, provided me with something interesting to discuss in job interviews, and provided me with confidence with my own ideas and ability to tackle imposing projects and big ideas. Most importantly, the program faculty and staff were extraordinarily helpful in providing advice and guidance and writing recommendations. They are a terrific resource for students that know to ask for and take advantage of their help.

-Michael H. Cognato, Class of 2004


My career path took me in several directions as I searched for the best opportunities to follow my passions and to fully utilize my skill sets. In the year after graduating from UPenn in 1996, I went on to work in various capacities, including as an Editorial Assistant at a Philadelphia-based foreign policy research institute and as a Paralegal at an immigration law firm in New York City. In 1997 I enrolled as a graduate student in the Department of Politics at New York University, receiving my MA degree in 1998. Though I had originally intended to continue in the program towards the PhD, I decided to defer admission and work for a while, starting work in technology consulting based in NYC. In 2000, I moved to San Francisco to start a technology company with overseas clients, and a year later - when the Internet bubble burst - I again switched jobs to Director of Operations at a SF-based nonprofit organization specializing in the use of documentary films for community outreach efforts. Deciding that it was finally time to return to school, and with a full scholarship I enrolled as a graduate student in the Anthropology Department at the University of Illinois at Chicago, focusing on archaeology. Currently, I am in Vietnam on a fellowship to conduct my archaeological dissertation fieldwork at an ancient citadel dating from the Metal Age, and I am interested in the underpinnings of Vietnamese civilization and the factors that lead to the formation of state-like polities and complex societies. Though I could not have predicted it at the time, my training with IR at Penn has enabled me to pursue work and research in various ways which were either directly or indirectly related to politics, economics, international business, and history. My overall objective, once the dissertation is complete, is to obtain a teaching and research position at a university.

-Nam C. Kim, Class of 1996

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I am currently a first year law student at Boston University School of Law. I am potentially interested in pursuing a specialization in international law, but they do not allow us to choose any classes until second year, so I won't be able to fully explore my interests or to figure out my specialization until then. I do know for certain that I am going to study abroad the first semester of my third year either at Oxford or Bucerius Law School, which is in Hamburg, Germany. I only studied abroad for the summer in Prague while I was still at Penn, which was an amazing experience, but I regretted not taking a full semester or year abroad. So I hope to rectify that by taking advantage of abroad programs in law school. I am currently exploring public interest job opportunities abroad for this coming summer. Although I'm not sure of what firms or organizations I will look into yet (it is still early), here are some places students from BU law have worked at previously: International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia (Netherlands), International Legal Affairs Division, Ministry of Justice (Korea), Amnesty International Japan, Cambodian Defenders Project, Alternative Dispute Resolution Clinic (Berlin, Germany). My long term career plans are to enter the private sector working at a large law firm upon graduation from law school, hopefully spending a year or two while working at an abroad office of the firm in Europe (I was a European History double major with IR and I studied German for a year at Penn my senior year out of pure interest and I hope to continue studying German by auditing undergraduate German classes while in law school and through going abroad). A lot of new legal territory is being forged in Europe as the EU continues to expand and I would love to be a part of it. I'd then be interested in working as in house counsel at some corporation, potentially in the auto industry like, for example, Mercedes Benz of North America. But that long term "plan" is certainly subject to change.

-Shane St. Hill, Class of 2007


After graduating from Penn, I received a job in the executive branch and moved to Washington D.C. I worked for the Office of Government Ethics, which ensures that executive branch employees comply with disclosure, bribery and election regulations. I specifically worked in the international department of the office, which helped foreign governments create ethics programs and implement anti-corruption laws. Our department also represented the U.S. Government in multilateral meetings, to provide answers on U.S. ethics and corruptions laws and regulations.

I am currently a first-year associate at Patton Boggs, LLP, a leading international law firm in Washington, D.C. I work primarily on international commercial transactions and public policy projects. Before joining the firm, I attended Georgetown University Law Center. While there, I focused on international law and worked part time at the State Department’s Office of the Legal Advisor, the Senate Judiciary Committee, and the Justice Department’s Office of Overseas Prosecutorial Development, Assistance and Training.

After graduating Penn in 2002 with a B.A. in International Relations (and minors in Chinese, Political Science, and Diplomatic History), I went to work at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) in Washington as a researcher for Dr. Bates Gill, the Freeman Chair in China Studies. While at CSIS, I worked on several China-related projects. In particular, I coordinated the Freeman Chair's project on China's Emergence in Central Asia. As such, I was the principal author of China's New Journey to the West: Report on China's Emergence in Central Asia and Implications for U.S. Interests (August 2003). Since then, I have been published widely on China-Central Asia relations and have given presentations at Chinese and American think tanks and government departments on this topic.

After leaving CSIS, I founded the China-Eurasia Forum (CEF), a research organization focusing on China’s relationship with its neighbors. The group was supported by several U.S., Chinese, and Central Asian think tanks. I ran this program for two years. CEF is now run by SAIS’s Silk Road Project and publishes the CEF Quarterly. I currently serve as a Senior Advisor. At the same time as starting the CEF, I moved to Beijing to attend the IUP language program at Tsinghua University for a year. Following this year in China, I began my studies at Georgetown.

-Matthew Oresman, Class of 2002


After graduating from Penn I decided to go to law school with the hope of eventually practicing international law in some capacity. I went to the University Of Washington School Of Law. For my first summer I worked for an Italian law firm in Milan, Italy as a summer associate and for my second summer I worked for a law firm in Seattle, Washington working on both domestic and international corporate issues. I am set to graduate in June, 2008 with a concentration in the international legal track and have accepted my position at Perkins Coie in Seattle, where I will be working in corporate law and, hopefully, and specifically international corporate law.

-Adam G, Class of 2005


I am now a commercial litigator in an international law firm. The International Relations major influenced my career path by focusing my interests on international issues and politics across the globe. From my studies, I increased my analytic ability in areas that interested me and I was able to gain a breadth of knowledge on pertinent topics that I now deal with all the time in my career. The courses I took at Penn in the IR major -- especially writing my senior thesis -- spurred my interest in the legal aspects of international relations while at the same time honing my ability to use my analytic and writing skills which are extremely important in law school. Representing foreign clients in commercial transactions and international arbitrations is something that I could not be doing today without having majored in IR at Penn!

-Andrew H. Reynard, Class of 2002


My IR degree proved invaluable to my immediate career after graduating Penn as an officer in the United States Marine Corps. My thesis on the formation of the Association of Southwest Asian Nations (ASEAN) enabled to understand the complexities of this region when I was deployed there. During my service, I lived in Japan, and was deployed to Thailand and was also deployed off the coast of Indonesia during the civil uprisings in 1999. Because of my coursework, I was able to confidently assist my chain-of-command in understanding these regions and their respective history. One of the highlights of my service was serving as an adjunct professor of U.S. History and teaching service members about U.S. foreign policy during WWII. After the military, I went to law school, and am currently a commercial litigator at a large national law firm. I can truly point to the IR program as developing my ability to critically analyze problems and develop alternatives for my clients. The multi-dimensional nature of the IR program exposed me to several different disciplines, thus enabling me to see the "big picture." The IR program honed my research and writing skills and has made into a successful litigator.

-John Mueller, Class of 1996

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Non-Profits and NGOs

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