Public Service in the Four Corners of the World

Adrienne Brooks
MA ’17
Conflict Management
First Year: SAIS Europe

Prior to attending Johns Hopkins SAIS, Adrienne completed a year of service with AmeriCorps VISTA (Volunteers In Service To America); worked with Habitat for Humanity in Raleigh, NC; and spent seven years as a broadcast journalist in the Army National Guard. These experiences convinced Adrienne to pursue a career in public service. After researching graduate schools, the Johns Hopkins SAIS Master of Arts appealed to her the most for several reasons — first was the practical nature of many of the classes, particularly in the Conflict Management concentration and second, that the school has a strong network of professionals in Washington, DC and around the world.

One of Adrienne’s favorite aspects about the school is that it is truly an international program. She enjoyed spending her first year in Bologna, Italy at SAIS Europe, where she met talented and experienced students and learned from professors living throughout Europe. She was also able to travel around the continent from Turkey to Serbia to Austria.

This past winter, Adrienne continued her travels, this time to China with the Conflict Management program to study the dispute over South China Sea claims. A group of students and two professors spent two weeks in Nanjing and Beijing interviewing government officials, leading Chinese academics, and researchers at top think tanks. The trip provided field research experience, an opportunity to engage with foreign leaders, and finally, a well-rounded policy proposal on one of today’s most complex conflicts.

Johns Hopkins SAIS has provided Adrienne with other great opportunities such as being added to the Foreign Service Register and selected as a Presidential Management Finalist.  Adrienne appreciates that she has pursued her desire to work in the public sector as a student and will continue on this path after graduation with Mercy Corps, where she will be conducting field research in Karamoja, Uganda to develop a case study for the UN Progress Study on Youth, Peace, and Security.