The Junior Fellow Experience

The Pacific Council’s Junior Fellowship program is a great opportunity for students and recent graduates to gain valuable experience behind the scenes of a non-profit foreign affairs organization. Learn more about what our Junior Fellows do here at the Pacific Council by reading interviews with and published articles by previous Junior Fellows here and here, impact statements from previous Junior Fellows below, and profiles of previous Junior Fellows below. Also check out a Facebook Live video presentation about water scarcity by our Fall 2017 Junior Fellows, and a Facebook Live video presentation about Los Angeles and immigration, Hollywood and the #MeToo movement, the environment, and the California effect by our Summer 2018 Junior Fellows.

Impact Statements from our Spring 2019 Junior Fellows

Tamzin Astani is a recent high school graduate who has a passion for international policy just like her parents who have been members at the council for a long time. Tamzin worked as an intern broadly helping out the whole staff of the Pacific Council when help was needed. She did a range of projects from labeling the disorganized supply cabinets to logging data from charts into salesforce to prepping for events. For her Junior Fellow Term Project, Tamzin talked about the refugee crisis highlighting experiences from her recent trip to the Moria refugee camp in Lesvos, Greece. Following her internship, Tamzin will be attending the American University of Paris in the Fall and will continue to use the skills she learned at the Pacific Council.

Manjun Hao worked in the Spring of 2019 as a Special Initiatives Junior Fellow. She was a senior at Occidental College pursuing a Bachelors in Diplomacy & World Affairs and a minor in Urban Environmental Policy. At the Council, she conducted landscape analysis for the Mexico Initiative, the Leaders of Tomorrow Program, and other special initiatives concepts, in addition to compiling corporate interest lists and speaker lists for programs and initiatives. She also analyzed the high-growth industries in LA, supported events, and conducted research on climate equity for her Junior Fellow term project. Manjun wrote her undergraduate thesis on colonialist biases in US study abroad program materials, and aspires to tell stories and study the needs of the most underprivileged in the age of globalization by being a social anthropologist! 

Damian Ortega worked in the Spring of 2019 as a Development Junior Fellow. In May 2019 he will graduate from the University of Southern California with a Bachelor’s degree in Political Science and a double minor in German Studies and Economics. As a Junior Fellow in the Development department, Damian compiled, visualized, and analyzed donor data for the sustaining membership portfolio for EOY 2018, giving insight into the performance of each giving level. Additionally, he researched corporate sponsorships for GLAS and provided support in sustaining member engagement tracking. For the Spring 2019 Junior Fellow term project, Damian researched the issue of sex trafficking in the Los Angeles area and conceptualized a potential partnership and speakership with a community advocacy group to tackle the issue of trafficking. After the Fellowship, Damian will be moving to the Washington DC area to work in non-profit development and subsequently apply to law school where he plans to specialize in International Law.

Gemma Stewart has worked as the Communications Project Fellow. Gemma is a SoCal native and has a Master of Public Diplomacy from the University of Southern California, with a B.A. in International Studies and Communication from Boston College. Her love for diplomacy and international affairs began when she studied abroad in Glasgow University in Scotland and was the only American in a course titled, "The United States' Foreign Policy and the World." Since then, she has taught English in Costa Rica, worked at an immigrant rights NGO in Dublin, Ireland, and interned at the Mexican Consulate of Los Angeles in the Cultural and Educational Affairs Department. As the Communications Project Fellow at the Pacific Council, she writes newsroom articles, manages social media, and creates media lists and pitches for events. In addition, she has developed and managed a stakeholder analysis project for the Council. For the fellow term project, Gemma created a program proposal based on the issue of climate change and how the Pacific Council can engage with the local Los Angeles community on this issue. 

Impact Statements from our Fall 2018 Junior Fellows

Nour Dabboussi worked in the Fall of 2018 supporting the Council’s Communications department. She graduated with honors from University of California, Los Angeles in June of 2018 with a Bachelors in Communication and Art History. As a Fellow, Nour composed the weekly Global Beat newsletter, in addition to several online pieces about the Council’s keynote sessions, including strategies on protecting soft networks in the Middle East, and the new USMCA trade deal. For the Fall 2018 Fellows’ term project, Nour assisted with the planning of the Council’s Deep Dive negotiation simulation by researching about the laws governing U.S. marine fishery management, and incorporating the Magnuson-Stevens Act into the debate information booklet. She presented her findings about the relevance of the Act in regards to promoting sustainable fishing policies in the North-Atlantic Beaufort seas, where recent ice cover melts are rapidly attracting economic exploitation of the region. After the Fellowship, Nour will be heading to New York City for an internship with the Permanent Mission of Lebanon to the United Nations. She aspires to attend graduate school in the upcoming fall to receive a Masters in International Relations and Humanitarian Law, as she pursues her ultimate goal of becoming her country’s diplomatic advisor on foreign affairs.

Kelechi Emetuche worked in the Fall of 2018 as a Development Junior Fellow. She graduated from University of Southern California with a Bachelors in International Relations & Global Business in May 2018. She was completing her  Master’s in Public Diplomacy at USC during the Fellowship. As a part of the Development department, she analyzed and researched sustaining membership data to inform strategic membership outreach. For the term project, Kelechi helped to organize the Beaufort Sea Negotiation and supported other Deep Dive initiatives. After the Fellowship, Kelechi will take the Foreign Service Exam and work towards becoming a career Public Diplomacy Officer in the Pacific Rim.

Jonathan Horwitz worked in the Fall of 2018 supporting the Initiatives department. He was a senior at the University of Southern California pursuing a Bachelors in Political Economy. As a Fellow, Jonathan conducted project-specific background research related to scoping new projects and supported new efforts in Global Water Scarcity and Mexico Initiatives. For example, he prepared programmatic materials and conducted travel research for the Council’s Sacramento Water Scarcity Field Foray. In addition, he completed issue-specific case studies, literature reviews & gap analysis, and program design recommendations with partners in Mexico on a project aimed to provide recommendations for water policy in Mexico City. Throughout the term, Jonathan prepared materials for panels and teleconferences about Mexico, including a conversation with Mexico’s Consul General about the future of free trade in North America. For the Fall 2018 term project, Jonathan assisted with event planning, operations, and strategy, and conducted research on environmental review of drilling leases in the Alaskan Arctic. After the Fellowship, Jonathan will complete his degree at USC, writing a thesis about U.S.-Mexico transboundary water management.

Impact statements from our Summer 2018 Junior Fellows

Shannen Dilag worked in the Summer of 2018 in the Programs department. She graduated Cum Laude from UC Irvine in June of 2018 with a Bachelors in Political Science and History. During her time at the Council, Shannen helped draft invitations to foreign government officials and potential speakers for upcoming delegations to Israel. In addition, she helped conduct research on organizations for the Council to connect with during its Northern California, Boston, and New York delegations. She also supported the Programs department by conducting research on potential speakers for the Council’s events. For the Summer 2018 term project, Shannen contextualized the history of immigration policy in Los Angeles in relation to the city’s current historical immigration narrative. After the Fellowship, she plans to apply to law school where she will eventually specialize in Human Rights Law and Immigration.

Athena-Rose Jennings worked in the Summer of 2018 supporting the Membership and Initiatives departments.  As a Fellow, Athena-Rose helped create outreach lists to diversify the Council network, contributed to the Newsroom, aided in research for water projects in Latin America, and helped translate and analyze policy papers.  Athena-Rose is currently a student at Pepperdine University, pursuing a Bachelors degree in both International Studies and Political Science, as well as a Certificate of Conflict Management.  Athena-Rose aspires to attend graduate school in trade policy.

Lucy Nussbaum worked in the Summer of 2018 supporting the Development department. She will graduate in May 2019 from Middlebury College with a Bachelor’s degree in International Politics and Economics. As a Fellow, Lucy worked to research and visualize board giving and sustaining member engagement, and helped create visualizations for the Council’s Mid-Year Review to project the year’s budget and compare to other years. Additionally, she worked to research potential corporate giving and grant opportunities that align with Pacific Council’s mission and Initiatives. For the Junior Fellow project, she researched, presented and wrote a piece for the newsroom on the role of Hollywood in global social movements. After the Fellowship, Lucy will return to Middlebury to finish her degree and then continue her pursuit of a career in international relations.

Profiles of previous Junior Fellows

Impact Statements from previous Junior Fellows

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