Bridging Disciplines Programs

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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.

Ana Laura Rivera
Major: Government, Spanish
BDP Certificate: Human Rights & Social Justice
Graduation Year: Spring 2014

Human Rights & Social Justice student Ana Laura worked on three initiatives for the Texas After Violence Project during her internship. Because of her interest in studying children and human rights, she conducted archival research and transcribed interviews that focused on bilingual education, violence in schools, and access for undocumented students.

"I discovered the importance of making children’s voices heard so they can have an opportunity to obtain an education."
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.”
andrew duna headshot
Major: Computer Science
BDP Certificate: Digital Arts & Media
Graduation Year: Spring 2018

Digital Arts & Media student Andrew Duna’s Creative Project exposed him to the disciplines of visual design, music, and technology. The project, called Tweets to Beats, contains an algorithm that scans a Twitter user’s tweets and uses the data to compose songs. He also had the opportunity to develop coding and web development skills, as the project was housed on a web platform.

"It was so rewarding to see how seemingly unrelated coursework could be intertwined in such a complementary and natural way."
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.”
Anna Rose Isbell headshot
Major: Corporate Communication Studies
BDP Certificate: Ethics & Leadership
Graduation Year: Spring 2019

Anna Rose Isbell, a Corporate Communication major completing a BDP certificate in Ethics & Leadership in Law, Politics & Government, served as a Media Ethics Citizen Scholar through the Moody College of Communication’s Media Ethics Initiative in spring 2018. She researched and wrote case studies related to media ethics and law, politics, and government as well as assisted with the public relations and advertising efforts of the Media Ethics Initiative.

“I really enjoyed getting to focus on topics related to my specific BDP, and connecting these topics to other disciplines that I didn't realize could be so easily intertwined. I learned so much about how different topics collide, especially with how involved the media is in the political and technological world.”
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."