Incoming Student Highlight: Atem Malak

Atem Pic

My name is Atem Peter Malak. I will be undertaking M.A of International Affairs with a Conflict and Conflict Resolution emphasis this fall. During my undergraduate studies, I majored in History with an Economics minor at Walla Walla University, College Place, Washington. I am fluent in Dinka (my native tongue), Juba-Arabic (spoken only), Basic French and fluent in English.

What I want to do with my Elliott School’s MA is to go back home (South Sudan) and work to promote peace, reconciliation and conflict resolution.

I am spending my summer familiarizing myself with Washington DC and attending many amazing events at different Think Tanks and also trying to get myself a decent job. In my free time, I like to play chess, hike, read, and hangout with friends.

Incoming Student Highlight: Chris Beauregard


Since graduating from The University of South Carolina in May of 2013, I’ve worked in business development in the Washington DC office of ThyssenKrupp, a German engineering firm focusing specifically on elevator technology. At GW I will be studying space policy within the ISTP program to begin my career in commercial spaceflight operations, business development and strategy. Much of my spare time is dedicated to building a company that I started to provide AED equipment to buildings in the metropolitan area.
My summer will be spent growing my customer base, preparing for classes and traveling, including Rio for the Olympics.

Incoming Student Highlight: Isabella Emanuele

Isabella Professional

As a recent college graduate, I will be attending the Elliott School to pursue a Master’s in Security Policy Studies. I am particularly interested in a career in defense or intelligence, and have considered joining the military, but am certainly open to other opportunities as well.

Prior to joining the Elliott School, I earned my B.S. in Political Science at the University of Louisville in Louisville, Kentucky. During my undergraduate career, I also participated in the Fall 2013 voyage of Semester at Sea, visiting ports across Europe, Africa, South America, and the Caribbean. Previously, I lived abroad in Italy, and I return periodically to visit family there.

As a product of my childhood in Italy, I still possess a rudimentary knowledge of the language. Additionally, I am a proficient German speaker, and have recently undertaken an independent study of Arabic. It is a challenging language, but I have greatly enjoyed my experience with it so far.

When I’m not trying to become a polyglot, I spend most of my time in the great outdoors hiking, trail running, or photographing landscapes and wildlife. I also recently acquired an electric guitar, and will hopefully be able play something that isn’t too terribly cringe-worthy in the near future!


Big Announcement! The Elliott School has launched an Institute for African Studies!

GW Announces Institute for African Studies

New center will provide hub for scholarship focusing on Africa.


From GW Today:

“The George Washington University announced Monday the launch of the Institute for African Studies, which will focus on major issues confronting the global community in Africa, one of the fastest economic growth regions in the world.

The institute’s inaugural director is Roy R. Grinker, professor of anthropology and international affairs at GW.

“Knowledge of Africa is essential for anyone working in international affairs. The institute will bring together faculty across campus under one roof to collaborate on a wide range of Africa-related issues, providing exciting new opportunities for our students to engage with the continent,” said Reuben E. Brigety II, dean of GW’s Elliott School of International Affairs.

Dr. Brigety joined GW in 2015 from the State Department where he served as U.S. representative to the African Union and U.S. permanent representative to the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa.

The Institute for African Studies will balance cutting-edge academics with policy and practitioner engagement in line with Dr. Brigety’s strategy of promoting scholarship, teaching, ethics and practice in international affairs education. It will create opportunities for students and faculty to connect with the worlds of policy and practice, especially through access to the D.C. region’s large African-origin population. The institute also will take advantage of the deep array of resources in the D.C. area through collaborations with local universities and libraries.

More than 50 GW faculty members with expertise on Africa across different disciplines and areas of study will collaborate under the new entity. Among its core goals is a more focused course of studies on African affairs and a major conference each year focused on a timely theme, including one planned for spring 2017 focusing on the 50th anniversary of the Biafran War. Other initiatives include increased specialized conferences and an “Africa and Development” seminar series.

“GW is committed to inspiring our students and faculty to study the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead in Africa,” said Dr. Grinker, who specializes in ethnicity, nationalism and psychological anthropology with topical expertise in sub-Saharan Africa.

The Institute for African Studies will be housed at GW’s Elliott School of International Affairs, a leading school of international affairs in the United States. The school’s undergraduate and master’s programs were ranked among the top 10 international affairs programs in the United States by the Teaching Research and International Policy survey.”

Incoming Student Highlight: Josh Kaye

Josh Kaye pic

My name is Joshua Kaye and I am excited to begin the Middle Eastern Studies Program at the Elliott School this fall. I am from Oakland California and got my B.A. from Brandeis University in Waltham, MA, double majoring in history and anthropology. I have worked in several different fields ranging from technology startups to public relations in the Bay Area. I plan to travel this summer through the Balkans and onto Munich to visit my sister and brother-in-law, who are expecting a baby this August. I speak fluent Hebrew and am hoping to learn Arabic, and plan to go into either government or the private sector after graduation. In my free time, I enjoy watching and playing baseball, football, and basketball, reading, hiking, cooking, doing trivia, and traveling. I look forward to meeting everyone at the Elliott School soon!

Incoming Student Highlight: Xiaodan Wu

photo_Xiaodan Wu

My name is Xiaodan Wu and you can also call me Ivy. I am an incoming student in the program of International Affairs and plan to take international economic affairs as my major field.

I recently graduated from Fudan University in China with a bachelor degree of international politics. I have great interest in Sino-Japan relationship as well as Sino-U.S. relationship. My graduation thesis is about Chinese nationalism in Diaoyu Island crisis. Besides academic research, I also took internships in the government, research center and private sector. During this summer, I will work as a research assistant to collect data for a Phd project. 

I have not decided to study further or become a consultant after finishing the program. I hope in the future two years in Elliott school, I could figure out the career path I would pursue for my life and find a way of living I really desire. 

In some break time, I like to watch movies and go to the gym to relax myself. When there is a long holiday, I prefer take a long trip with my friends or participate in a summer program.

By the way, I’ve been to the United States before and look forward to going there again and seeing my future classmates there!

Incoming Student Highlight: Sahil Jain

Sahil Jain photo

I will be joining the Elliott School this Fall pursuing a MAIR with a concentration in U.S. Foreign Policy.

I was born and raised in Northern California and graduated from The Maxwell School at Syracuse University in 2013 with a degree in International Relations and South Asian Studies.  During my time at Syracuse University I studied overseas in the U.K. and India.

After graduation, I started working at the U.S. Department of State in the Office of Israeli and Palestinian affairs as a Foreign Affairs Officer.  I then moved to the U.S. Agency for International Development in the Global Development working on foreign assistance programs.  I’m currently working at the U.S. Department of State as a Country officer.  This past March I was awarded the State Department Charles B. Rangel International Affairs Fellowship and will join the U.S. Foreign Service in 2018.

This summer, prior to starting graduate school, I am a foreign affairs fellow in Congressman Ami Bera’s office.

In my free time I like to play basketball, travel, and read.