Elliott School 360

February 2017

December 2016

November 2016

October 2016


February 2017

Initiative to Develop Disaster Resilience in Developing Countries Launches

The Initiative for Disaster Resilience and Humanitarian Affairs (IDRHA) is a multimillion-dollar initiative based in GW's Elliott School of International Affairs and will combine education and research with on-the-ground training programs in developing countries to prepare local leaders to respond to and recover from disasters. The new program will operate projects in more than a dozen countries to improve disaster resilience when nations face conflict, extreme weather, terrorism or other natural and man-made disasters.

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GW Students Witness Life on the Border

Recently, Elliott School students Anna Hedlund ('17) and Madeline Beecher ('17) set out for a trip of a lifetime, witnessing first hand border control activities in El Paso, Texas and Ciudad Juarez, Mexico. Both students participated in the GW Alternative Breaks Program, a student led organization that organizes domestic and international service-learning opportunities for students. The mission of the Alternative Breaks program is to empower and challenge all students to understand their relationship with the global community through service, education, and reflection.

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Can Big Data Save the Elephants?

Ted Schmitt, ESIA MA '06, is not your average conservationist. A technology wizard living in Seattle and working for Vulcan Inc., Schmitt wields big data as a weapon in the fight to protect the Earth's threatened species. Most recently, he has been a key player in Vulcan's Great Elephant Census, a data-driven quest to conserve the dwindling African elephant population funded by philanthropist Paul G. Allen. The census is part low-tech: in small airplanes, 90 scientists from seven NGOs flew tens of thousands of miles over grasslands and floodplains counting the elephants. Back at Vulcan in Seattle, Schmitt and his team were busy creating a high-tech system to store and analyze the vast amounts of data collected, with the goal of influencing policy. When we caught up with Schmitt in November, he had just returned from another conservation project in Rwanda.

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December 2016

Elliott School Alumnus Returns to Aid Students in How Best To Use an International Affairs Degree

Elliott School students of all ages and disciplines gathered on Wednesday evening to gain insight into how best to use their international affairs degrees. Elliott School alumnus Hussain Nadim, BA ’10, brought his experience as a senior expert on Pakistan at the U.S. Institute of Peace to explain to students how he was able to use his degree to lead to his successes, among them, being recognized in 2016 as a “Forbes 30 Under 30 Global Leader in Law and Policy.”

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New Speaker Series, "Why Ethics Matter" kicks off with Pastor Evan Mawarire

"If you could imagine the colour of courage what would it be? An aggressive red? A solid black or maybe a fiery orange. If you could imagine courage as an animal what would you see? A majestic lion? A ferocious bear or maybe the unflinching water buffalo. Each of those colours and animals is what you would ordinarily expect courage to look like or to behave like. And yet the most inspiring acts and expressions of true courage come in forms and shades that most of us would probably never recognise. That’s because courage and indeed ethics are not about being the loudest or strongest. They’re always about a passion to stand for something you deeply believe in so much that you’re often left with no choice to sacrifice life and limb for." (excerpted from Pastor Mawarire's remarks)

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Students Present at the Inaugural Meeting of the Student Research Forum

When Elliott School senior, Hannah Hassani, returned from presenting her research on labor migration from the Philippines in San Francisco last semester, she decided to start a movement at the Elliott School of International Affairs for fellow students to do the same. She wanted to give other students the opportunity to present their own research to peers and faculty and receive feedback to help further discovery and development. "I saw that there was no avenue to present at the Elliott School," said Hassani. "So I emailed Dean Harrison and Kaylie, and they said we'd love to do this, so we got started this semester."

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November 2016

Professor Muhammad Yunus Meets with Elliott School Students

Professor Muhammad Yunus on a visit to GW, hosted by the Elliott School of International Affairs, graciously agreed to spend the day meeting with students and faculty prior to his public speaking event. Elliott School students interested in international development, social entrepreneurialism, and Southeast Asian studies, among other disciplines, received the opportunity of a lifetime recently when they were invited to a small gathering over tea and the chance to talk with Nobel Laureate and father of microfinance, Professor Muhammad Yunus. “Giving our students the opportunity to interact with a visionary like Professor Yunus is one of those moments that they will remember for the rest of their lives. We are so lucky here the Elliott School to be able to offer opportunities like this to hear from dynamic people in foreign affairs like Professor Yunus who have literally changed the course of history. It’s kind of staggering when you think about,” reflected Kyle Renner of the Institute for International Economic Policy (IIEP) which co-sponsored the event.

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Professor Henry Nau Awarded Order of the Rising Sun

The Japanese Order of the Rising Sun was recently conferred upon Professor Henry Nau by the Japanese Ambassador Extraorinary and Plenipotentiary of Japan to the United States, Kenichiro Sasae. Nau was recognized for promoting legislative exchange and mutual understanding between the United States and Japan through the US-Japan Legislative Exchange Program. An expert on US foreign policy and international politics, Nau has been a central figure in the program. He spearheaded the first US-Japan legislative exchange in 1989 and has served as the program's co-director for nearly three decades. Now in its 27th year, the program has brought together more than 300 Japanese Diet members and US Members of Congress.

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Elliott School Women Take on UN Resolution 1325

Professor Aisling Swaine, director of the Center for Gender Equality in International Affairs, and associate professor of practice of international affairs, recently invited three Elliott School women to accompany her to attend the UN Security Council's open debate on Women, Peace, and Security, October 25, at the UN Headquarters in New York City. The trip was sponsored by resources from the Dean's Fund, a fund dedicated to enhancing the student experience through financial support for projects such as Global Capstone, student research, and student travel.

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October 2016

No Lost Generation Finds Its Voice

The No Lost Generation student initiative, founded in 2013 at GW, is an independent consortium of student organizations with partnerships throughout the world, whose mission is to focus attention on the plight of children affected by the Syrian crisis. Although No Lost Generation began its work in reaction to the Syrian crisis, it has expanded its mission to address refugee crises around the globe. The movement connects student leaders, humanitarian workers, and public and private sector employees to work together to support refugees. 

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African Head of State Visits the Elliott School

The President of Namibia, Hage Geingob, recently visited the Elliott School for the Constituency for Africa’s (CFA) US-Africa Policy Forum. The forum’s purpose was to agree upon a set of policy statements regarding US-African relations to present to the next administration. The forum was co-chaired by the President and former Ambassador to the United Nations, Andrew Young. Dean of the Elliott School and former Ambassador to the African Union, Reuben Brigety, moderated the roundtable discussion.

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A Man in Full: The Hon. Edward W. Gnehm Jr., ESIA BA '66, MA '68

When Edward “Skip” Gnehm Jr. arrived at GW in the fall of 1962, he already had his goal in sight. He spent the next six years studying international affairs. A distinguished career as a diplomat, including three ambassadorships, followed. He is currently Kuwait Professor of Gulf and Arabian Peninsula Affairs at the Elliott School. During Alumni Weekend, Ambassador Gnehm will join former classmates to celebrate the 50-year reunion of the class of 1966. We recently caught up with Ambassador Gnehm in his book-lined office on the fifth floor of the Elliott School building, and he shared a few thoughts about GW in the 1960s and about the diplomat’s life.

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