Profiles

Nicolás Ávila-Venegas, Reims
Nicolás Ávila-Venegas

Hometown

Bogotá, Colombia

Favorite Moment at Sciences Po

The day former President Lula da Silva arrived in the emblematic Rue Saint Guillaume to receive the doctorate Honoris Causa was by far the most exciting moment. The pompousness of the ceremony was shortly replaced by a vibrant applause that honored the charismatic child of the poverty-stricken Brazilian town of Carete. Sciences Po was recognizing for the first time a Latin American leader that with a historic progressive political agenda combined fiscal responsibility with a strong and decided fight against the failure of our political systems: social inequality.

Favorite Moment at Columbia University

The months at Columbia have been a passport to discover one of the most diverse and multifaceted universities of the world. It is too early to decide such a thing as a favorite moment. However, the discussions that take place during the World Leaders Forum, the possibility to exchange with Nobel laureates like Orhan Pamuk during the University Lectures, or the student spirit in the 2012 Presidential debates have been unique opportunities to take profit from three elements we can find at Ivy League universities such as Columbia: academic excellence, an ongoing exchange of ideas, and a multicultural student body.

Activities

  • Colombian representative to the program "Ruta Quetzal BBVA" sponsored by H.M. King Juan Carlos I of Spain
  • Assistant to the Minister of Trade, Tourism, and Industry for the final round of negotiations of the Free Trade Agreement between Colombia and the European Union
  • Junior researcher at the 2010 Colombia Presidential Transition Committee
  • Intern at the Cabinet of the Minister of the Interior of the Republic of Colombia and speechwriter for the Minister
  • Member of Sceinces Po's Latin American and the Caribbean Political Observatory
  • Research assistant in the area of justice reform and public policy in Latin America

Future Plans

Colombia is undergoing a dramatic transofmration and is living a very special time. In this moment, the government is negotiating to terminate an armed conflict with the oldest guerilla group in the world. After graduation, I would like to return to my native Bogotá to work in politics or with the government in the building process of our dreamed and beloved [nation] post-conflict. I think it is our duty as children of developing countries to return home with a bag full of experiences, new ideas, and tools learned at two leading universities of the world. Even more, in a decade that will be one of a new type of leadership.

Sciences Po Campus

Reims

Majors

History/Human Rights

Dual BA Student Axel Fougner
Axel Fougner

Hometown

Oslo, Norway

Favorite Moment at Sciences Po

Apart from all the fun I had with my friends in Menton and the exciting classes I had on politics and society in the Middle East with some of the leading experts in these fields, my favorite moment was probably when Babel Initiative, the student association I worked in, sent 22 students from our school to Lebanon and back for a one-week study trip. After endless hours spent fundraising with countless strategies exhausted, after all the organization and logistics, emails and phone calls to set up relevant and interesting timetables for our student researchers, it was very satisfying to see the project to its successful completion.

Favorite Moment at Columbia University

I have only been at Columbia for a semester, but I have already experienced so many great moments. In my elective Electrical Engineering class, I learn amazing, new, science-fictionesque facts every week. I've also had some memorable moments with wind in the sails, when I'm out in Eastchester Bay with the Columbia Sailing team.

But nothing is quite as satisfying as completing a big project, so the final performance of the musical that I'm in here at Columbia is my favorite moment. I’m sad not to be spending as much time with the cast anymore, but happy to be done with the hard work. Most of all, I'm proud of the show and its success!

Activities

  • Radio operator on a Norwegian "fast patrol boat" in the UN Interim Force II in Lebanon, 2007.
  • Internship at "The Brussels Office", a public affairs agency specializing in EU affairs, Summer 2010.
  • Co-president of "Babel Initiative", a student association for research and cultural exchange with the Middle East at Sciences Po Paris
  • Columbia Musical Theater Society's production of "A funny thing happened on the way to the forum".
  • Columbia Sailing club

After the Dual BA Program

As a recent graduate of the Dual BA between Columbia and Sciences Po, I am excited to start taking advantage of the wide-ranging professional and academic opportunities that this program has afforded me. I now have two degrees: One from a top European institution with a specialization in Middle Eastern studies, and the other from an Ivy League university with a major in Economics. I have also gained extensive cultural knowledge and an international network, all of which I hope will be helpful as I head to the London School of Economics for a Master's program in Political Economy before I finally begin the search for a challenging and meaningful job, hopefully as a political/economic analyst or as an academic.

What I will remember best from these four years, though, is not how fast my understanding of the world, of society and of science developed and expanded, although that is also something for which I am happy. Instead, what I will cherish most are the experiences that I shared with the many talented and passionate people that became my good friends along the way. At Sciences Po's Menton campus, for example, my friends and I organized and funded research seminars in the Arab states of the Persian Gulf and then in Lebanon. At Columbia, we put on and acted in three productions of American musicals.

The underlying idea of any Liberal Arts College is for students to be part of a community of learning, and to grow as human beings through everyday experiences inside and outside the classroom. The Dual BA, with its transatlantic and multilingual campuses, takes this idea and brings it one step further. As a Dual BA student, I went through many changes in rapid succession: cultural changes, changes in educational systems and in areas of study, to name a few. The only factor that didn't vary was the heavy workload. Sometimes, it was hard to adapt quickly enough. But what I learned from the highly diverse yet like-minded people that I met along the way helped me manage. In short, I learned that every change is also an opportunity, and that it isn't necessary to stay in the same campus for four years straight in order to develop a strong sense of community. On the contrary, it was the international and diverse approach of the Dual BA that gave me my friends and a genuinely global perspective, and I am grateful for that.
 

Sciences Po Campus

Menton

Major

Economics

Luis Felipe Goncalves Morgado

Hometown

Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Favorite Moment at Sciences Po

"My two years at Sciences Po have been an immensely enriching experience, but my favorite moment was probably the Autumn School program in Lisbon. All second-year students in my campus (Poitiers) travelled to Lisbon for a week, during which we learned much about the benefits of studying on a small campus and living in Europe."

Favorite Moment at Columbia

"The World Leaders Forum is a unique tradition at Columbia, and this year-round event series is an invaluable opportunity to listen directly to some of the most important decision-makers in the world. From José Barroso to George Soros, the quality of speakers is incredible and shows how Columbia articulates academics and global dialogue."

Activities

  • Internships in investment banking (Fiscus Capital in Montevideo, Uruguay) and management consulting (Macroplan in Rio de Janeiro).
  • Research assistant at the Political Observatory of Latin America in Poitiers, France
  • Team leader for "Imaginons notre futur" (Imagine the future) public management case competition.
  • Sits on the board of the Multicultural Business Association at Columbia.

Future Plans

After graduation, I intend to work for a while in the financial industry in investment banking, hopefully covering Latin America or other emerging markets. I also want to study for a Master's degree, either in Business or in International Affairs, in Europe or in the US.

 

Sciences Po Campus

Poitiers

Major

Economics

Alexis Lenoir
Alexis Lenoir

Hometown

Aix-en-Provence, France

Favorite Moment at Sciences Po

Sciences Po has been a formidable experience in all aspects. The specific architecture of its campuses equips the student body with a serious advantage.

The Euro-Asian campus of Le Havre where I spent my first two years bestowed upon me a substantially rich breadth of vision on Euro-Asian relations. I will particularly remember the dialogue we had with Aung San Suu Kyi as well as the conference with the current French Minister of Foreign Affairs Laurent Fabius. Learning about their vision and understanding of international affairs helped re-shape my perspective on major global issues such as regional integration and interventionism.

Favorite Moment at Columbia University

Although I have only spent one semester thus far at Columbia, I nevertheless already feel that these few months have impacted me greatly. Discovering Columbia also meant discovering the United States, New York, and American culture. As such, in addition to the tremendous quality of education Columbia brings about both inside and outside the classroom, I am profoundly enjoying my cultural experience living with American flatmates who have become the cornerstone of my incredible journey at this University.

Activities

  • Rugby
  • CEP project (helping socially disadvantaged students prepare for their entrance examinations to Sciences Po)
  • Sciences Po Investment Club
  • Volleyball
  • Tango

Future Plans

After graduating, I plan to pursue an education articulating the constraints of economic pragmatism and political path dependency. Entering a master's program tackling the issues of economic policy is a strong option for my future education, and my subsequent career plans would notably aim at researching development policies.

Sciences Po Campus

Le Havre

Major (declared or intended)

Financial Economics

Morgane Morvan
Morgane Morvan

Hometown

Lorient, France

Favorite Moment at Sciences Po

At Sciences Po, I attended several very interesting conferences given by political leaders and managers of well-known firms such as Danone. It was very rewarding. Nevertheless, my favorite moment was "Le Crit," which is the sports competition between all the French institutes of political studies. In 2011, the competition took place in Paris and it was so much fun. I did the swimming contest and I supported friends doing other sports. Most of the students were involved in this event, which is why I enjoyed it so much.

Favorite Moment at Columbia University

At Columbia, my favorite moment was election night. I watched the debates between Romney and Obama in the student center but for the election night, I was in my friend's apartment. We were all super excited waiting for the results. When we learned that Obama was reelected, we took the subway to Times Square and Rockefeller Center. We were surprised that there were not that many people there, but it was an unforgettable night.

Activities

At Sciences Po, I was on the swimming team and I also took part in "Le Journal des Sports." Every week, I reported on a particular sport so that Sciences Po's students knew the results of their teams in competitions.

At Columbia, I am a tour guide. I give tours of the campus for guests of the University and their children. I also work at the front desk of the visitor's center of Columbia.

Future Plans

I hope to do an internship at a consulting firm this summer in Paris or New York. After I finish the Dual BA Program, I would like to get a master's degree in Business.

Sciences Po Campus

Paris

Major

Economics

Gaëtan Muller
Gaëtan Muller

Hometown

Thionville, France

Favorite Moment at Sciences Po

It is hard for me to pick a favorite moment out of all the good times I had during my Reims years. The campus was charming and warm. I enjoyed arriving early in the morning to read in the garden and think. The Reims campus provided me with a place to expand my points of view and challenge my opinions. The debates were often heated! Most seminars that I took were fun, specific, and engaging. It was nice to feel like I was actively participating in the elaboration of my knowledge. Among other experiences, I had a real ball during our musical performance at the end of the second year. There was also a memorable snowball fight before an economics lecture...

Favorite Moment at Columbia University

After three months at Columbia, I've already learned so much. My favorite moments will probably include all the times I got to meet new people from different backgrounds, saw campus life in action from Low Steps, and experienced the diversity and richness of New York City.

Activities

I worked as a student librarian at Sciences Po. My extracurricular activities included the Students Sports Association, putting together a fashion show, a yoga club, and participated in a musical. I also interned for the Crédit Agricole.

Future Plans

For the future, I would like to go to graduate school and travel around the world as much as possible.

Sciences Po Campus

Reims

Major

Political Science with a concentration in Religion

Dimitri Nouveau
Dimitri Nouveau

Hometown

Paris, France

Favorite Moment at Sciences Po

My favorite moment at Sciences Po was the filming of a documentary on political activism. We were shooting a deputy-candidate campaigning in an open-air market, and all along the way she described to us the hard life of the people living in this impoverished neighborhood located in the east of Paris. It really came as a shock to us, since studying in a very wealthy neighborhood does not always help grow awareness of such raging inequalities.

Favorite Moment at Columbia University

I have not been here for a long time, but I've had the opportunity to enjoy some of Columbia's oldest traditions such as Primal Scream, Orgo Night, and the Tree Lighting Ceremony. Such traditions foster community spirit, which is something I find truly fascinating in American colleges. Students are proud to be part of the Columbia community and these traditions help them identify to this community's history and legacy.

Activities

At Sciences Po, I worked for the branch of a national think tank (Terra Nova), first as editor-in-chief and then president. I very much enjoyed setting up events such as debates and workshops, especially while the presidential campaign was goign on.

At the end of my first year in Sciences Po, I interned at the French-American Foundation where I contributed to the development of various programs such as the Young Leaders Program, which brings together French and American up-and-coming leaders in order to foster relations between the two coutnries.

At the end of my second year, I interned in a diversity consulting firm in London (Vision Enabler) which provides innovative, turnkey solutions to firms looking to make HR processes mroe inclusive and improve decision-making. I took part in a job for a European high-tech company, where I conducted research to build the legal framework that applies to diversity in selected countries, collected data during interviews with top executives and workshops with operatives, analyzed it to write executive summaries, and helped design the final presentation with the HR board.

Future Plans

I would like to go to business school and then work as a management consultant for a few years because it is an intellectually challenging activity and a great training opportunity. I do not have further plans yet, but I am confident that my time at Columbia will help me figure that out.

Sciences Po Campus

Paris

Major

Economics

Margot Renault
Margot Renault

Hometown

Paris, France

Favorite Moment at Sciences Po

My favorite moment at Sciences Po was probably my first day as a student in the school. The first day was simply an opening ceremony, with a speech from the director, but it made me fully realize that I was now part of the institution. It also symbolizes the beginning of a great experience, with very interesting classes, lots of lively organizations, and amazing friends.

Favorite Moment at Columbia University

After two years at Columbia University, it is hard to pick one precise moment, but I would say that one of my favorite moments was my first Thanksgiving. We do not celebrate this holiday in Frence, therefore I never attended a real Thanksgiving dinner before. Luckily, I was invited to spend the break with a friend and her family in their New Hampshire house. In fact, I barely knew my friend at this time—we just shared a class together—and she kindly invited me to spend four days with her. We had a great time coking, eating, and playing board games aroudn the fire. I also had smores for the first time. In short, a perfect American break!

Activities

  • Dancing (classical and modern)
  • Traveling (Europe, Middle East, Southeast Asia, Chile)
  • Sciences Polémiques (Sciences Po's public speaking and debating society)
  • CIRCA (Model UN and academic team)
  • Internship with a political campaign (for a candidate to legislative elections for French expatriates in North America)

Future Plans

After graduating, I will go back to Sciences Po to pursue my studies. I would like to study Public Affairs and work as a high civil servant.

Sciences Po Campus

Paris

Major

Economics–Political Science

Anne-Claire Warnet

Hometown

Vincennes, France

Favorite Moment at Sciences Po

Barack Obama's election night. Two months into my first year at Sciences Po, I could share the enthusiasm of hundreds of students gathered in the main auditorium. We stayed up all night waiting for the results and listening to political analysts. It was very representative of Sciences Po's spirit.

Favorite Moment at Columbia

Among the numerous events I attended during my first semester here, I really enjoyed the Columbia Community Forum, which gave me the opportunity to meet students from the different schools of Columbia and learn more about the history of our new university. It visually portrayed our campus' diversity and made us aware of the new community we would be part of for the rest of our life.

Activities

  • Dancing
  • Hiking
  • Cinema
  • Model United Nations
  • Internships at the French embassies in Portugal and in Sweden

Future Plans

I will probably go for a Masters degree in Economics as I am interested in public policies analysis.

Sciences Po Campus

Paris

Major

Economics