A Future in Public Service

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Amanda Van Gilder
MA ’17
Strategic Studies
First Year: SAIS Europe
Recipient of the 2017 Presidential Management Fellowship

Amanda chose to attend Johns Hopkins SAIS given its cross-disciplinary education and solid network of high-achieving individuals. Having spent her first year at the SAIS Europe campus in Bologna, Amanda has made sure to capitalize on everything the school has to offer.

Amanda came directly to Johns Hopkins SAIS after completing her undergraduate degree at Baldwin Wallace University in Berea, Ohio. During her undergraduate education, she majored in International Studies and the Spanish language, studying and working in Spain and Peru. Her academic advisor, also an alumna, first encouraged Amanda to apply to the school.

Amanda’s graduate studies have allowed her to immerse herself in new areas of expertise. As a Strategic Studies concentrator, her course work provides the environment and opportunities to study a variety of topics ranging from statistics and Arabic to trade policy and nuclear weapons policy. One of her favorite experiences was a student-led staff ride during her time in Bologna. A group of classmates from all concentrations traveled to Eindhoven, the Netherlands to study the failed Allied WWII Operation Market Garden.

After graduation, Amanda hopes to work in a defense or national security-related position. As a recent recipient of a Presidential Management Fellowship (PMF), Amanda is excited about this next step of exploring positions in the federal government.