Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Looking back: Three graduates reflect on SAIS Bologna

Today we turn this journal over to three recent graduates of SAIS Bologna.

Astrid Haas, Patrick Flanagan and Elan Bar all serve on the Bologna Center Advisory Council, composed of leaders from Europe and the United States who help guide the institution.

Astrid attended SAIS Bologna in 2008-09 and studied the following year at SAIS DC. She is currently working as an analyst for the Food, Agribusiness and Rural Markets Project in South Sudan.

Patrick followed Astrid by one year at SAIS. He is currently a consultant with the World Bank's International Finance Corporation in Washington.

Elan Bar is a second-year student at SAIS DC. Some of our readers may recognize him as the president of the SAIS Bologna Student Government Association last year. Before coming to SAIS Bologna in 2010, he had worked as an English teacher and language consultant to several large Italian companies and institutions, including the Italian military.

I caught up with these three graduates before the Advisory Council's annual meeting in Bologna last month. In the video below, they discuss why the decided to attend SAIS Bologna and what it meant for them.

My apologies for the background noise on the tape. Some local university students were in the street outside the Bologna Center taking advantage of the fine spring day and celebrating with one of their classmates who had recently earned a university degree. In Italy, tradition has it that a graduate marches proudly through the city streets while wearing a crown of laurel leaves. Hence the English word "laureate".

If you are reading this via email, you can see the video by clicking here.

Nelson Graves

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