From UW Bothell to world diplomacy

Published: June 4, 2014

Kelley Shaw, a 2014 graduate of the University of Washington Bothell, is going to have a different kind of summer than most of her classmates. Having earned an internship with the State Department at the U.S. Mission to NATO, Shaw will be waist-deep in the world of diplomacy and international relations while living in Brussels, Belgium.

The approachable Shaw describes here circuitous route to UW Bothell. “I grew up in Liberty Lake which is located in the Spokane Valley, and started learning German in high school,” Shaw explains. “I began taking community college classes through Running Start when I was 16, and by the time I was 18, I was fluent.”

The summer after graduating High School, Shaw began her journey into international relations by taking an intensive course in Germany. This experience inspired Shaw to attend Jacob University in Bremen as an international student, where she flourished for two years.

“While I was at Jacob I developed an interest in diplomacy and found an internship with the State Department, but in order to qualify I needed to be attending a US accredited school. It was a bit messy trying to get my credits to transfer, but I eventually came to UW Bothell.”

Needless to say, Shaw is an ambitious student. In addition to working on her Law, Economics, and Public Policy degree, she sought to connect with other students and get them involved with issues of international diplomacy and foreign policy. She believes she has helped to create an awareness of the issues and opportunities for engagement; something she hopes will translate into more student involvement on campus and in these types of internships in the future.

Even with her characteristic intelligence and self-sufficiency, Shaw managed to find meaningful support and inspiration among the faculty and student body at UW Bothell.

“Kelley has been a delight to work with. With her already internationalized background from living in Germany, she has deepened her capacities with internships abroad and a continuing exploration of global security issues, especially in Europe,” says former Associate Vice Chancellor of Undergraduate Learning Gray Kochhar-Lindgren. “She has an insatiable intellectual curiosity combined with an ideal of service and I am very much looking forward to seeing what form her career trajectory takes.”

At the moment, Shaw is busy trying to finish up the Russian classes she has been taking at the Seattle campus, along with the other coursework she still has on her plate. Even with this workload she is still looking ahead, preparing herself for new challenges and adventures.

“I’m not sure what’s going to happen after the internship,” Shaw says, her eyes narrowing into the distance. Whatever it is, we can be sure that Shaw will continue to create a positive impact on a wherever she is in the world.

Kelley Shaw