Hear From Alumni

Alumni of Jackson’s MA program in Global Affairs apply their interdisciplinary learning to a variety of roles and sectors.

In Their Words

Anirudh Krishnan, Class of 2021 Thumbnail
Anirudh Krishnan, Class of 2021

"Jackson provided me with a platform that has permanently shifted the trajectory of my career in very exciting ways and dared me to dream bigger. I arrived at Yale looking to arm myself with a broad understanding of the foremost thinking on what drives global poverty and income inequalities within and among countries. At Jackson, I found in it a wonderful community of intellectuals and practitioners working to find unique approaches to addressing underserved issues globally. Between the breadth and flexibility of the curriculum, the tremendously diverse experiences of my cohort, travel opportunities, an internship at the Abdul Latif Jameel Poverty Action Lab (J-PAL) at MIT, honing my analytical skills as a research assistant to a Yale sociologist, and teaching alongside one of the all-time best statistics teachers, I was able to fill known and unknown gaps in my training and exposure to the world of public policy in developing countries. As I embark on a career at the intersection of evidence and government policies and programs, I am constantly pushed by the example of my Jackson peers and alumni to strive for the greatest impact in all that I do."

Tiffany Chan, Class of 2021 Thumbnail
Tiffany Chan, Class of 2021

"If it were not for Jackson, I would never have co-founded Hillhouse Analytics with my fellow classmate. Jackson had a wonderfully close-knitted student and faculty community that provided a lot of intellectual and moral support for our entrepreneurial efforts. The curriculum was flexible enough that I could take exactly the courses I needed across campus. People don’t often associate entrepreneurship with global affairs/public policy programs, but the kind of big picture, strategic thinking combined with ground-level inspection of reality that was encouraged at Jackson was precisely what’s important for a good leader of any organization. I left Jackson with not just a start-up, but also the confidence and inspiration I needed to pursue a more unconventional career path."

Adam Hammer, Class of 2020 Thumbnail
Adam Hammer, Class of 2020

"The world is hungry for leaders who are comfortable with the complexity of an interwoven world. Yale Jackson equips leaders with an interdisciplinary toolkit and a personal network of practitioners, strategists, and innovators to help navigate an ever more uncertain and turbulent world. I left Jackson more informed, better equipped, and more inspired to take on the world's most urgent challenges. Jackson is built around the individual—its personalized curriculum and tight-knit community of scholars provided me with foundational skills to develop and execute policy while affording me an opportunity to forge life-long friendships with colleagues, staff, and professors. I know I'll carry Jackson—the friendships I made and the lessons I learned—everywhere I'll go."

Shanavian Houser, Class of 2019 Thumbnail
Shanavian Houser, Class of 2019

"As the private sector becomes increasingly involved throughout the global development space, becoming knowledgeable and utilizing both skill sets are essential in order to address the most pressing societal challenges. Jackson’s flexible curriculum gave me the opportunity to cross-pollinate with the School of Management and thus increased my ability and skill set to become an effective leader and contributor in the partnership development space. Classes like 'How Business Can Align Profit and Purpose' (a Jackson course) and 'Strategic Management of Nonprofit Organizations' (a SOM course), well prepared me for my current role at the CDC Foundation where partnership development is key! As the world continues to fight against the Covid-19 outbreak, the Foundation’s partnerships with private donors and public health organizations have uniquely positioned it to rapidly mobilize resources and directly support the CDC’s coronavirus response. Without the knowledge and skills I gained throughout my time at Jackson, I would not be able to be a part of such a pivotal moment in history."

Tabish Azeem, Class of 2019 Thumbnail
Tabish Azeem, Class of 2019

"My internship at KKR Global Institute was facilitated through Jackson’s career development office.
It opened doors to a summer at the investment firm’s New York office. I worked with a small team led by former CIA Director General David Petraeus.

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It was a valuable learning opportunity that gave me a window into how private investment could help developing countries and the risks around investment climate in a world that’s undergoing a change in the global order. I cannot think of a better way I could have spent my summer, and it all started with the job posted by Jackson’s Career Development Office!"

Jillian Anderson, Class of 2018 Thumbnail
Jillian Anderson, Class of 2018

"Jackson gave me two years to delve deeply into the topics I’m passionate about and ask the big questions. And SOM gave me two years to delve deeply into functional skills (how to run effective organizations). Jackson students and SOM students are asking the same big questions. In my field, global health, one of the big questions is how do we solve the HIV/AIDS crisis? At Jackson that question would largely be approached from what can we do with the World Health Organization, how do we partner with governments? At SOM the perspective starts with: 'You’re running an organization and you’ve been given $100 million, how do you actually serve the most people possible?'
 
"Being able to speak fluently in both 'languages' and communicate with all of the different stakeholders that are going to be involved in complicated decisions has really added value: that we bring something unique to the table. That if you’d only done one degree you wouldn’t necessarily be able to do."

Izabela Kolodziej, Class of 2017 Thumbnail
Izabela Kolodziej, Class of 2017

"Taking advantage of the flexible curriculum at Jackson, I enrolled in classes at Yale Law School and the School of Management, the Political Science and History departments, while also pursuing a language course. I studied principles of international law, economics of the public sector, learned the basics of statistics, delved into history of specific countries and discussed geopolitics in the context of multilateral institutions, violence, increasingly relevant non-state actors or game theory. As a Teaching Assistant I was also able to lead discussion sessions on topics related to international security as well as history and politics of Europe. I believe getting such a broad and multidisciplinary education as well as exposure to working in the field during my summer internship helped me to secure a job at the European Commission in the area of EU's foreign policy.

Flexibility, an interdisciplinary approach, practical experience and a theoretical background is exactly what is needed when working as a civil servant in a multi-governmental institution such as the EU."

Lissa Glasgo, Class of 2017 Thumbnail
Lissa Glasgo, Class of 2017

"I chose Jackson because of the flexibility of the program and rigor of the classes, and that turns out to have been a fantastic decision—because of the variety of classes and close relationships you foster with professors and Senior Fellows, I was able to pivot from international development to social enterprise and impact investing. Now, at the Global Impact Investing Network (GIIN), I'm applying what I learned through statistics, business, leadership, and research methodology classes to build resources that help investors measure, analyze, and improve their social and environmental impact."