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Student Profiles

Click on a student’s name or picture to learn more about their experiences with the Bridging Disciplines Program in the School of Undergraduate Studies. To view student success stories from other UGS programs, visit the student success page.

Andre Galuban
Major: Jazz Performance
Graduation Year: Spring 2016

Global Studies BDP student and jazz performance major Andre Galuban stepped outside of his academic comfort zone to research Algerian military power. With encouragement from his mentor, Dr. Zoltan Barany, Andre analyzed this topic through multiple lenses. The experience inspired Andre to consider graduate work in foreign affairs or foreign policy, with the ultimate goal of impacting global issues.

“This experience showed me the importance of studying a topic through different disciplines, such as politics, international relations, government, economics, and public relations, to name a few.”
Anjali Khatri
Major: International Relations and Global Studies
BDP Certificate: Conflict Resolution & Peace Studies
Graduation Year: Spring 2018

Anjali Khatri, a student in the Conflict Resolution & Peace Studies BDP, spent her summer interning at the Center for Refugee Services in San Antonio. As an intern, Anjali worked with refugees as they transitioned to life in a new country. She also had the opportunity to collaborate with refugee and non-refugee teens to create a documentary film exploring the human experience.

“My work at the center has even inspired me to consider a career within the United Nations Human Rights Council.”
photo of Anna Catherine Alvis
Major: Political Communication; Plan II Honors
BDP Certificate: Public Policy
Graduation Year: Spring 2017

Public Policy BDP student Anna Catherine Alvis interned with The Center for Equity and Adequacy in Public School Finance, Inc, better known as the Equity Center, where she gained experience in many areas of public school finance.

“I learned so much by simply being present in the Equity Center office – the people I worked alongside were absolutely incredible and they took the time every day to teach me something new.”
Ashley Rivera
Major: Sociology
BDP Certificate: Media, Culture & Identities
Graduation Year: Fall 2015

Ashley Rivera, who completed her BDP certificate in Media, Culture & Identities in fall 2015, spent the summer of 2015 on the coast of Nicaragua where she conducted ethnographic research on the Garifuna people. Her research explored the unique culture and identity of a black indigenous population within the broader Mestizo population of Nicaragua.

“Through this Connecting Experience I learned about these peoples’ histories, lives, and experiences as well as how to conduct research.”
audrey wilkes headshot
Major: Civil & Environmental Engineering
BDP Certificate: Environment & Sustainability
Graduation Year: Spring 2018

Environment & Sustainability BDP student Audrey Wilkes conducted independent research on the social, economic, and political factors that contribute to renewable energy practices in Texas. This experience exposed her to a variety of disciplinary lenses, including perspectives from natural sciences and social sciences, through which she examined sustainability issues.

"Conducting this research has confirmed my passion for sustainability…rather than narrowing my focus of interest, my research experience has widened it.”
Blair Robbins
Major: Plan II
BDP Certificate: Human Rights & Social Justice
Graduation Year: Spring 2015

Human Rights & Social Justice BDP student Blair Robbins researched volunteer tourism programs as part of her undergraduate thesis. Applying a postcolonial lens while maintaining historical insights, she analyzed the participation of mostly American, British, and Australian college-aged students in “ethical” short-term trips to developing countries. This experience prepared Blair for her summer internship at a local nonprofit, where she examines Texas police forces’ use of military surplus equipment.

“I have learned to speak about a timely and contentious topic in a way that people can relate to and understand. I have also learned more about how larger political and historical contexts inform popular perceptions and small-scale interpersonal interactions, leading to subtle perpetuations of power and oppression.”
blake kappel headshot
Major: International Relations & Global Studies
BDP Certificate: Conflict Resolution & Peace Studies
Graduation Year: Spring 2017

Blake Kappel, completing a BDP in Conflict Resolution & Peace Studies spent summer 2016 in Beijing as an intern with Starfish Project, a social enterprise working to empower exploited and trafficked women in Asia.

"The insight I gained into specific issues surrounding the work provided me with a more nuanced understanding of the world of women's empowerment."
Bridget Bofinger
Major: Communication Studies
BDP Certificate: Ethics & Leadership
Graduation Year: Spring 2016

Bridget Bofinger, a communication studies major pursuing a BDP certificate in Ethics & Leadership in Business, served as an internal communications intern at Texas Instruments the summer before her senior year. This experience allowed her to take ownership on significant projects, and taught her about a field of work that was previously unknown to her. As a result of this internship, Bridget is now focusing her job search on internal communications positions.

“The most rewarding aspect of my internship was the ability to own a project and see it from start to finish.”
Brooke Johnson
Major: Studio Art & Art History
BDP Certificate: Museum Studies
Graduation Year: Spring 2019

In her internship with Bale Creek Allen Gallery, Brooke Johnson, completing a BDP in Museum Studies as well as majors in Studio Art and Art History, deepened her understanding of the roles of curator and artist. In addition to coordinating art shows, social media and PR for the gallery, Brooke also developed an independent project reflecting on the artist-as-curator in museum spaces.

"The most rewarding aspect of my Connecting Experience was how well my coursework this semester has tied into my BDP experiences. I took an anthropology course that really helped shape the way I view curating and museum management."
Cameron Clark
Major: Sociology
BDP Certificate: Human Rights & Social Justice
Graduation Year: Spring 2015

Cameron Clark, a Human Rights & Social Justice BDP student, conducted research on the complex and timely topic of police interaction with communities of color. He used the tools and methodologies of sociology to analyze ethnographic data on this subject. A Rapoport Service Scholar, Cameron will graduate in May 2015 with a major in sociology. He plans to pursue a career working to achieve social justice through the legal profession.

“I believe this research project has prepared me to apply sociological principles to the legal profession, which will be crucial in tackling the many challenging legal questions we face today.”

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