Newly Opened Doors
Analyst, Office of the Inspector General, Department of Transportation
I received a business management and operations degree in Germany in 1991, where I was born and raised. Afterward I immigrated to the United States and worked for the next 10 years as the general management of a business hotel in New Jersey. This took me all across the country, and even to the Bahamas. As a recently naturalized citizen, I responded to the 9/11 attacks by enlisting in the National Guard, graduating top of my class at the US Army Military Intelligence School in Fort Huachuca, AZ. From there I returned to Washington to start the second leg of my academic journey at Edmonds Community College. From there I transferred to UWB. I specifically chose IAS because my German degree was too focused and I experienced a lot of closed doors searching for a new career.
The Global Studies option provided a great variety of memorable experiences I would have missed out on otherwise, and ultimately opened the door to the second part of my professional life. Through the IAS program, I was able to speak on a live TV show of Ethiopian immigrants, study marine conservation at the UW Friday Harbor Labs, and visit Washington, DC for my senior seminar. In Washington I met senators and representatives and had access to the Pentagon and State Department, as well as a myriad of other influential agencies. Luck even provided a private tour of the Capitol building and an overall experience that will forever stay in my memory.
The IAS degree has provided valuable insights into national and international issues, diversity, politics, economics, and global problems. It may not always be easy to explain to others what the degree is all about, but for me, it was the perfect vehicle to success.