Ambassadors serve at the pleasure of the Dean of the School to bolster SPIA’s reputation with external constituencies, such as alumni, donors, prospective students, and citizens of the local, state, and global community.  They do this by assisting with events, participating in efforts to build philanthropic support, and promoting the School in their personal and professional networks. In serving as an ambassador, students gain a greater understanding of the School and its priorities and have access to exclusive opportunities to interact with notable alumni and donors throughout the year.


2024-2025 Ambassadors

Grayson Abbott
Major: Political Science & International Affairs
Certificate: Public Affairs Professional Certificate in Applied Politics

Grayson is a third-year student from Atlanta, Georgia, majoring in political science and international affairs. At UGA he serves as the Executive Director of Bulldawgs for Biden, a student-run grassroots organization supporting President Biden’s re-election. He also serves as a Senior Advisor for Georgia Students for Change and sits on the Executive Council of the Alpha Phi chapter of Sigma Pi fraternity. Last May, he had the opportunity to participate in a study abroad program in South Africa where he studied the detrimental effects of a repressive regime. After graduation, Grayson hopes to find a position in government relations, supporting education and environmental policy.

 

Lilly Adams
Major: Political Science
Minor: Spanish & Public Policy and Management

Lilly Adams is a junior from Lexington, Kentucky, majoring in Political Science and minoring in Spanish and Public Policy and Management. She is currently involved in Kappa Alpha Pi Pre-Law and Government Fraternity, Women in Political Science and International Affairs, and Alpha Delta Pi. Lilly is interested in policy development and hopes to pursue a career in lobbying after graduation. She is excited to serve the SPIA community and build new relationships as a 2024-25 ambassador!

 

Emma Allen
Major: Political Science
Minor: Law, Jurisprudence, and the State
Certificate: Data Analytics in Public Policy

Emma Allen is a third-year student from Dalton, Georgia majoring in Political Science while also pursuing a minor in Law, Jurisprudence, and the State and a certificate in Data Analytics in Public Policy. While at UGA, Emma has become heavily involved in several clubs and organizations. These include UGA Women’s Club Volleyball, UGA’s mentor program Whatever It Takes, Phi Alpha Delta Law Fraternity, UGA Miracle, and Phi Mu Fraternity. After graduation, she hopes to attend law school to achieve her lifelong dream of becoming a lawyer. Emma looks forward to further engaging with the SPIA community and expanding her perspectives as a 2024-25 ambassador!

 

John Amabile
Major: International Affairs
Minor: Italian

John is a fourth-year student from Milton, GA, majoring in International Affairs. He also is pursuing a minor in Italian. He expects to complete his degree in May of 2025. During the summer of 2023, John studied abroad in Italy. In the summer of 2024, John interned at UPS, working in public affairs in Washington, D.C. After graduating, John hopes to work in the intelligence field. John is excited and grateful to return as an ambassador for a second year!

 

Donovan Arnold
Major: International Affairs & Political Science
Minor: International Human Rights and Security & Law, Jurisprudence and the State
Certificate: Public Affairs Professional Certificate in Applied Politics

Donavan is a rising third-year student majoring in International Affairs and Political Science, complemented by minors in International Human Rights and Security, Law, Jurisprudence, and the State. Additionally, he is pursuing a Public Affairs Professional Certificate in Applied Politics certificate. Donavan’s academic ambition extends to pursuing a Master’s in International Policy through the Double Dawgs Program. Donavan has just finished studying abroad with the SPIA at Oxford program. He dived into diverse topics such as Government and Mass Media and War and Human Security, gaining a deeper understanding of global affairs. Donavan is deeply engaged in a multitude of leadership roles and involvement initiatives, including active contributions to the CURO/Georgia Power Electric Mobility Scholars Program, working as a Student Assistant at the University of Georgia Center for Continuing Education & Hotel, service within the University System of Georgia African American Male Initiative’s GAAME Scholars Program, and facilitation as a Peer Facilitator for the Leadership UGA’s Emerging Leaders Cohort.

 

Kennedy Baker
Major: Political Science
Minor: Law, Jurisprudence and the State

Kennedy Baker is a third-year student from Cincinnati, Ohio, on the pre-law track, with a major in Political Science and a minor in Law, Jurisprudence, and the State. She has been selected as a student on the Dean’s list. As a pre-law student, Kennedy has experience as a mock trial attorney, legal intern, and student representative for student lobbying groups in the U.S. Supreme Court, White House, and Congress. Kennedy also served as a Summer 2024 SPIA Firenze Study abroad program participant. Before graduating in 2026, Kennedy intends to participate in the Washington D.C. semester program through the University of Georgia. As a student dedicated to the representation of and service to her community, Kennedy has served as an Executive board member for The University of Georgia’s Black Affairs Council’s Freshman Board, Recruitment Co-chair, and Football Ambassadors liaison for Georgia Daze Minority Recruitment Program, Mentor in the Clarke County Mentorship Program, and Student Member of the Georgia Association of Black Women Attorneys. With Kennedy’s experience in the legal field and dedication to her community, she plans on attending law school and becoming an attorney.

 

Aminata Balde
Major: International Affairs
Minor: International Human Rights and Security

Aminata Balde is a senior originally from Guinea, West Africa but currently living in Fairburn, Georgia. She is an International Affairs major with a minor in International Human Rights and Security. She’s had previous experience working as an intern with Historic Athens. On campus, Aminata is an active member of the education policy team of the Arch Policy Institute, Rotaract of UGA, La Table Française, and is a Transition Leader with Student Affairs at UGA. She is particularly interested in African Politics and has recently presented research on education policy and how it affects African economies at the SPIA Undergraduate Research Colloquium. After graduating in the Spring of 2025, she hopes to attend Law school and work in international law and development, focusing on African countries. Aminata is truly honored to represent the School of Public and International Affairs and looks forward to serving its diverse body of people as an ambassador.

 

Makayla Bangoura
Major: International Affairs
Minor: Business

Makayla is a third-year student from Acworth, Georgia. She is an International Affairs major and Business minor on the Pre-law track. At UGA, Makayla is also involved in Model United Nations and is a writer for The Loch Johnson Society. In the summer of 2024, Makayla studied abroad in Florence, Italy, and volunteered with State Representative David Wilkerson. She is expected to graduate in May of 2026 and plans to attend law school after completing her undergraduate degree. Makayla is excited to serve as a SPIA ambassador for the 2024-2025 school year!

 

William Burns
Major: Political Science
Minor: Law, Jurisprudence and the State, Criminal Justice, & International Affairs

William Burns is a fourth-year student from Fairmont, West Virginia, majoring in Political Science, with minors in Law, Jurisprudence and the State, Criminal Justice, and International Affairs. In addition to being a SPIA Ambassador, he is an Associate Justice of the SGA Supreme Court and a Kappa Alpha Pi Pre-Law Fraternity member. As an ambassador, he hopes to connect more students with the SPIA community and to add a different perspective to the SPIA experience. He recently studied abroad in Cortona, Italy, during the spring 2024 semester and in Oxford during the summer of 2023. William plans on attending law school after his undergraduate degree here at UGA. William is excited about being SPIA Ambassador and is passionate about the work he can hopefully accomplish as an ambassador.

 

Anya Chin
Major: International Affairs
Minor: Law, Jurisprudence and the State

Hi, I am Anya Chin! I am a rising fourth-year DoubleDawg student majoring in International Affairs and International Policy with a minor in Law, Jurisprudence, and the State. Alongside my studies, I have served as the Membership and Recruitment Chair for the Black Pre-Law Student Association here at UGA. Additionally, I have dedicated myself to community development as the Operations Assistant at East Athens Development Corporation. Through various initiatives like job coaching, tutoring, and food drives, I have worked to contribute to the betterment of East Athens’ low-income community. As I enter my final year of undergrad, I am excited to delve into my passion for Human Rights advocacy through the GLOBIS Human Rights Lab. This will pave the way for me to the MIP program post-graduation, as I plan to focus my studies on the human rights track. Becoming a SPIA Ambassador presents an exciting opportunity to grow personally and inspire incoming students to explore the vast opportunities SPIA offers.

 

Jayden Clark
Major: Political Science
Minor: Religion & Law, Jurisprudence and the State

Jayden Clark is a fourth-year student from Gainesville, Georgia. He is a pre-law student pursuing a degree in political science with a double minor in religion and law, jurisprudence, and the state. Jayden was a part of the founding class of the pre-law fraternity, Kappa Alpha Pi, and now serves as the Vice President of Membership and the social chair for the UGA Redcoat Alto Saxophone section. During his time in college, Jayden interned at the Hall County District Attorney’s office and was an intern for the Ben Souther Congressional Campaign, where he focused on voter outreach. Jayden will graduate in Spring 2025 and plans to attend law school that fall. His goal is to practice human rights law to help contribute to making the world a better place. Jayden feels incredibly blessed to have had so many opportunities to help his academic career and looks forward to representing SPIA as an ambassador for the 2024-2025 school year!

 

Justin Cohen
Major: Political Science & International Affairs
Minor: Hebrew Language and Literature
Certificate: Public Affairs Professional Certificate in Applied Politics

Justin Cohen is a third-year student from Marietta, Georgia, majoring in Political Science and International Affairs with a minor in Hebrew Language and Literature. Justin has worked with various groups, including internships with U.S. Senator Jon Ossoff (D-GA), the White House Office of Management and Budget, EMILYs List, and the Office of State Representative Spencer Frye (GA-122). Outside of his professional work, Justin is actively involved with the University of Georgia’s campus community, where he currently serves as a student ambassador for the School of Public and International Affairs, as a member of the 33rd class of the Arch Society, and within UGA’s Student Government Association. After graduation, Justin plans to pursue a career on Capitol Hill.

 

Ella Colker
Major: Political Science & International Affairs

Ella Colker is a first-year Honors student double majoring in Political Science and International Affairs. She currently serves as an At-Large Senator in UGA’s Student Government Association. She holds leadership positions in her sorority, Sigma Delta Tau, and volunteers in SGA’s Professional Clothing Closet. Ella hopes to participate in Honors in Washington as an intern on Capitol Hill in the summer. Upon graduation, she hopes to attend graduate school before beginning a national security and diplomacy career.

 

Kyleigh Cook
Major: Political Science
Minor: Law, Jurisprudence and the State
Certificate: Personal and Organizational Leadership & Public Affairs Professional Certificate in Applied Politics

Kyleigh is a third-year Honors student from Baltimore, Maryland, pursuing a degree in political science with a minor in Law, Jurisprudence, and the State through the School of Law. This May, she will study abroad in South Africa through SPIA’s Center for the Study of Global Issues. In the fall, she will lead a service-learning project through the UGA Archway Partnership, which connects rural communities with the university’s resources. In addition, Kyleigh looks forward to developing critical skills related to campaign management, lobbying, and political data analysis as a member of the 9th cohort of the Applied Politics program. After graduation, she hopes to lead a law and public policy career.

 

Nicole Cortes
Major: International Affairs
Minor: Portuguese & Sustainability

Nicole Cortes is a rising junior who is currently a fellow in the Richard B. Russell Security Leadership Program. Additionally, she is a Portuguese Flagship student, an international student orientation leader, and a representative Frye legislative fellow. She loves trying out cafes around campus, thrifting, and watching documentaries in her free time. She is excited to serve as an ambassador and to help support SPIA!

 

Julia DePasquale
Major: Political Science & Statistics
Minor: Law, Jurisprudence and the State

Julia DePasquale is a third-year Honors student from Marietta, GA, double majoring in Political Science and Statistics and minoring in Law, Jurisprudence, and the State through the School of Law. She is expected to graduate in May 2026 and aspires to attend law school following graduation. Along with being a SPIA ambassador, Julia has been involved with Greek Life, research, and volunteering with Whatever it Takes.  She has professional experience interning for a juvenile public defender. Additionally, this past summer, she studied abroad with SPIA through the Stellenbosch, South Africa program and attended the summer session of UGA at Oxford.

 

Caroline Dorrell
Major: Political Science
Minor: International Affairs

Caroline is a fourth-year political science major and international affairs minor from Johns Creek, GA. At UGA, she serves as the President of the Alexander Hamilton Society and is a Kappa Alpha Theta fraternity member. Caroline has served in various roles in local, state, and federal politics off-campus. During the 2022 election cycle, she worked as a finance and fundraising team member on a United States Senate campaign. That following spring, she served as a session intern in the Office of the Georgia Lieutenant Governor. Currently, Caroline continues to work in campaign fundraising. Upon graduation, she plans to attend law school and pursue a career in campaign finance law.

 

Chloe Fenster
Major: Political Science & Spanish
Minor: Sociology, Criminal Justice, & Latinx Studies

Chloe Fenster is a fourth-year student from Dunwoody, Georgia, double majoring in Political Science and Spanish with minors in Sociology, Criminal Justice, and Latinx Studies. She is chair of the Jewish Life Committee at Hillel, is involved in Period Project UGA, and is an Alpha Kappa Delta Honor Society member. Over the summer of 2024, she will be studying abroad in Valencia to further her studies of the Spanish language. After graduation, she hopes to participate in SPIA’s Master of Public Administration program and eventually become a part of nonprofit leadership. Chloe looks forward to her time as a SPIA Ambassador during her senior year at UGA!

 

Maddie Flores
Major: Political Science
Minor: Communication Studies

Maddie is a 2nd-year political science student who is minoring in communication studies. Maddie is involved with Delta Zeta and part of the Morehead Honors College at UGA. This past summer, Maddie participated in the SPIA in Scotland Study Abroad program, where she studied political economy. In the past, Maddie has worked with SkillsUSA Georgia as a state officer and has interned in Fulton County Superior Court with Judge Carnesale. Maddie is excited about this opportunity and cannot wait to represent SPIA!

 

Caitlyn Foster
Major: Political Science & International Affairs
Minor: General Business & Law, Jurisprudence and the State

Caitlyn is a third-year double major in political science and international affairs with minors in general business and law, jurisprudence and the state. Caitlyn is from Pike County, Georgia. Along with her academic classes, she is a legal intern at a personal injury law firm and serves as the program’s counsel for her sorority. After her undergraduate studies, Caitlyn plans to attend law school, hoping to eventually own her practice one day. This summer, Caitlyn will be traveling to Florence, Italy, with SPIA, where she will be able to learn more about international politics in a foreign country.

 

Ava Godbey
Major: Political Science
Minor: Communication Studies

Ava is a second-year honors student from Atlanta, Georgia. She is pursuing a political science degree with a minor in communication studies. At UGA, she is an honors teaching assistant for incoming Freshmen, is involved in the Arch Policy Institute, and volunteers at Downtown Academy. She has enjoyed interning for Congressman Mike Collins’s district office this past spring and will intern for Congressman Ken Calvert on the Hill this summer! Ava is extremely grateful and excited to represent the College of SPIA as an ambassador in the 2024-25 school year!

 

Ashlyn Goode
Major: Political Science & Economics
Minor: Law, Jurisprudence and the State

I am a third-year studying Political Science and Economics with an emphasis in Public Policy and a minor in Law, Jurisprudence, and the State. I am the academic coordinator for the Delta Phi Epsilon sorority, and I have held various leadership roles within Arch Policy Institute. I have interned with the Athens District Attorney’s Office and plan to attend Law School after graduation. Outside school, I foster cats with Circle of Friends Animal Rescue Service and enjoy sewing and hiking.

 

Caroline Hare
Major: International Affairs
Minor: Swahili & Military Science
Certificate: African Studies

Caroline Hare is a fourth-year International Affairs major with minors in Swahili and Military Science and a certificate in African Studies. Caroline’s passion for service is evident in her various leadership positions and community engagement activities. She was the Public Service and Outreach intern for Experience UGA and is a contracted cadet in UGA Army ROTC. Caroline is also a member of Omicron Delta Kappa and is the president of the SPIA Student Union, further demonstrating her commitment to academic excellence and community involvement. Her love for travel and culture has led her to study abroad in Tanzania and Amman, Jordan, and she interned in Stuttgart, Germany, where she enhanced her language skills and cultural knowledge. It is worth noting that Caroline has even summited Mt. Kilimanjaro in Africa. After graduation, Caroline plans to commission as an active-duty Military Intelligence Officer, combining her passion for service with her knowledge of International Affairs and African Studies. Her ultimate goal is to serve in the US Intelligence Communities and continue to positively impact the world.

 

Juliana Hartley
Major: Political Science & Economics
Certificate: Data Analytics in Public Policy, Public Affairs Professional Certificate in Applied Politics, & Legal Studies

Juliana Hartley is a fourth-year Honors student from Cartersville, Georgia, majoring in Political Science and Economics, with Certificates in Data Analytics & Public Policy, Applied Politics, and Legal Studies. Juliana was part of the first UGA SPIA U.S. National Parks Maymester Program cohort and visited 13 national parks last summer. In addition to being a SPIA Ambassador, she is the Chief of Staff of the Frye Fellowship Program, on the Beauty Team for STRIKE Magazine Athens, and an involved advocate for mental health care. As an ambassador, she hopes to bring more rural students into SPIA and connect with anyone interested in what the college does for its students. She enjoys being on the lake, crocheting, and trying new coffee shops in her free time. Juliana is incredibly excited to represent SPIA and share with everyone what the school has done for her!

 

Kaitlyn Hood
Major: International Affairs & Economics
Minor: Law, Ethics, and Philosophy

Kaitlyn Hood is a second-year student from Peachtree City, Georgia. Kaitlyn is double-majoring in International Affairs and Economics with a minor in Law, Ethics, and Philosophy. On campus, Kaitlyn Hood serves as an At-large Senator for UGA’s Student Government program and is involved in Women in Economics, Arch Policy Institute, The Women’s Network, Society of Government Relations, and the Asian American Student Association. During her time here at UGA, Kaitlyn aims to expand her experience and exposure to public policy. She is also incredibly excited to participate in SPIA’s wonderful Ambassador’s Program!

 

Chinelo Ireh
Major: Political Science & International Affairs
Minor: Film Studies & Law, Jurisprudence and the State

Chinelo Ireh is an upcoming third-year student majoring in Political Science and International Affairs with a minor in Law, Jurisprudence, and the State. After graduation, she wishes to attend law school and work alongside legislators. She completed an internship with Representative David Scott of GA-13 in the summer of 2024. Outside of her studies, she writes nonpartisan articles with the Georgia Political Review, conducts research with the Center for Undergraduate Research Opportunities (CURO), and is the 2024-2025 treasurer for the Black Theatrical Ensemble at UGA. In her free time, Chinelo likes to make movies and spend time with family. She is excited to serve as an ambassador in the upcoming year.

 

Hendley Jones
Major: Political Science
Minor: Religion & Portuguese
Certificate: Public Affairs Professional Certificate in Applied Politics

Hendley is a fourth-year political science major with minors in Religion and Portuguese and a Certificate in Applied Politics. His professional experiences include working as a legislative intern at the Georgia State Capitol for the 2024 legislative session and serving as a PROPEL Rural Scholar through the Carl Vinson Institute of Government. On campus, Hendley is active in many facets of campus life, including Greek Life with his fraternity, Beta Upsilon Chi, Student Government Association, and various political organizations. After graduation, he plans on pursuing a Master’s in Public Administration and working in the realm of public policy and economic development. Hendley is ecstatic to serve as a SPIA Ambassador and represent his college!

 

Laura Kelley
Major: Political Science & Public Relations
Certificate: Public Affairs Professional Certificate in Applied Politics

Laura Kelley is a third-year UGA student from Dawsonville, Georgia. She is currently studying political science and public relations and has a certificate in applied politics. She is also in her second year of the DoubleDawgs program, where she is working on her MPA. She is involved in her sorority, Gamma Phi Beta, and Carl Vinson Institute of Government’s PROPEL Rural Scholars program. Her favorite experience through SPIA was the Georgia Legislative Intern Program (GLIP), in which she interned with Senator Walker in the Senate’s majority leadership office during the 2023 Legislative Session. She also interned with Lieutenant Governor Burt Jones during the 2024 Legislative Session. She aspires to continue working at the state capitol during her undergraduate studies and to attend UGA Law School following the MPA program in 2026. Her long-term career goals involve lobbying in education and agriculture policy at the state level. She is honored to represent SPIA, a school she finds that continues to provide her with abundant opportunities and superlative professors.

 

Iman Khan
Major: International Affairs, Political Science, & Spanish
Minor: Law, Jurisprudence and the State, International Human Rights and Security, & Communication Studies
Certificate: Global Studies, Personal and Organizational Leadership, & Interdisciplinary Writing

Iman Khan is a third-year student majoring in International Affairs, Spanish, and Political Science and minoring in Law, Jurisprudence, & the State, International Human Rights & Security, and Communication Studies. She attended the 2024 SPIA a Firenze Maymester, where she was able to study gender in politics and food security. She holds leadership positions in Stillpoint Literary Magazine, Literature Club, and Pakistani Student Association and volunteers with various organizations. She was also able to intern at a law firm where she learned various legal processes. She enjoys reading, watching movies, and eating ice cream in her free time! She plans on graduating in May 2026, and either wants to pursue law or human rights in the future.

 

Jensyn Kretschmar
Major: Political Science & International Affairs
Minor: Law, Jurisprudence and the State

I am a second-year student from West Palm Beach, Florida, majoring in Political Science and International Affairs. I am also pursuing a minor in Law, Jurisprudence, and the State. This summer, I have been accepted to the Summer Judicial Internship program at the 15th Judicial Circuit in West Palm Beach, Florida. I am also currently interning with Greater Georgia for the spring semester. For some of my on-campus involvement, I am a member of Kappa Alpha Theta, on the rush committee for Kappa Alpha Pi pre-law and government fraternity, am an ambassador for Shop with a Bulldog, and am a member of UGA Heroes as well as the morale committee for UGA Miracle. Within the Athens community, I am a literacy mentor at Books for Keeps and love to volunteer at the Athens Area Humane Society. After I complete my undergraduate years at UGA, I hope to attend law school and become an attorney. I am so excited to be an ambassador and represent SPIA!

 

Raquel Laranjeira
Major: Political Science & International Affairs
Minor: French

Raquel Laranjeira is a second-year international student from Brasi­lia, Brazil. She is a member of the Morehead Honors College, majoring in International Affairs and Political Science with a minor in French. In addition, she is part of the National Society of Collegiate Scholars. Raquel is a World Leader with International Student Life, assisting international students in preparing for a successful start on campus. She is involved in Life on Life Campus Ministries. Raquel loves to go to the Portuguese table and volunteer at the UGArden. She expects to graduate in May 2026. After graduation, she hopes to attend law school to work with international organizations and diplomacy in the future. Passionate about languages and cultures, Raquel has traveled to several countries. She is excited to represent the international community as an ambassador for the School of Public and International Affairs. It is her second year as an ambassador, and she hopes to make a lasting impact on the program!

 

JJ Lazo
Major: Political Science
Certificate: Institute for Leadership Advancement & Public Affairs Professional Certificate in Applied Politics

JJ Lazo is a second-year Political Science major from Auburn, GA. He expects to complete his undergraduate degree in Spring 2026. JJ is on the pre-law track with interests in political advocacy and public policy, aspiring to be an immigration lawyer one day and give back to his community. He is involved in the Student Government Association, Institute for Leadership Advancement, Applied Politics, University Housing, TRIO, and Georgia Commitment Scholars. This past summer, JJ had the opportunity to study abroad in Scotland and give a speech at the White House, encouraging more young Latinos to continue their education just like him. This summer, JJ will serve as an Orientation Leader for New Student Orientation and help welcome the next class of upcoming freshmen.

 

Sarah Kate Maher
Major: Political Science & Public Relations
Certificate: Public Affairs Communication

Sarah Kate Maher is a second-year Honors student from Savannah, Georgia, double majoring in Political Science and Public Relations and with a certificate in Public Affairs Communication. At UGA, Sarah Kate is involved with the Honors Student Council, the Georgia Political Review, PRSSA, and Sigma Kappa Sorority. She has also interned with the United States Defense Intelligence Agency over the last school year, as well as for Wade Herring for Congress and Lexy Doherty for Congress. She hopes to either earn a Master’s in Public Relations or go to law school after undergrad and is so excited to serve as a SPIA ambassador!

 

Blake Martin
Major: Political Science
Minor: Spanish & International Affairs

Blake Martin is a second-year UGA student from Hoschton, Georgia. He is currently studying Political Science with minors in International Affairs and Spanish. He serves on the Georgia Commitment Scholarship Executive Board and is the assistant secretary for Beta Upsilon Chi. Blake is also actively involved in community service, volunteering with ESP, and participating in the Wesley Foundation worship team. After graduation, he plans to pursue a Master of Public Administration at UGA. Blake is honored to represent SPIA and is passionate about helping other students succeed.

 

William Mason
Major: Political Science
Minor: Law, Jurisprudence and State & Philosophy
Certificate: Public Affairs Professional Certificate in Applied Politics

William Mason is a fourth-year student majoring in Political Science. He is from McDonough, Georgia. William is a member of the 8th Applied Politics Certificate program Cohort and minoring in Philosophy and Law, Jurisprudence, and State. He has pre-law intent and hopes to study criminal law. William aspires to enter the field of law before entering the realm of politics later on. In his free time, he enjoys catching up on political news and cheering on the Dawgs in all things sports!

 

Maggie McInerney
Major: Political Science
Minor: Law, Ethics, and Philosophy
Certificate: Environmental Ethics & Data Analytics in Public Policy

Hi! My name is Maggie McInerney and I am a rising fourth year here at UGA. I am a Political Science major with a minor in Law, Ethics and Philosophy. I am also pursuing certificates in both Environmental Ethics, as well as Data Analytics in Public Policy. I plan to attend law school after graduation, with a specific interest in environmental advocacy. On campus, I am a returning SPIA Ambassador as well as a Managing Editor for our Undergrad Law Review! I am so excited for the upcoming school year and further serving SPIA!

 

Kellsey Miller
Major: Political Science & International Affairs
Minor: Communications Studies

I am Kellsey Miller, a rising second-year International Affairs and Political Science double major with a minor in Communication Studies from Fayetteville, Georgia. On campus, I am involved with University Housing as a Community Service Assistant at Building 1516 and actively participate in a few other programs, one of which is the Beyond the Arch Career Readiness Program. After completing my undergraduate studies, I plan to attend law school and eventually become an attorney with focus areas in Civil and Entertainment Law. I am so excited and extremely grateful for the opportunity to be a SPIA Ambassador for the 2024-2025 Academic School year.

 

Kanika Patel
Major: International Affairs

Kanika Patel is a third-year Honors student majoring in International Affairs at the University of Georgia. Outside of her academic pursuits, Kanika serves as a director in her sorority, Delta Gamma, along with serving on the SPIA Diversity Council as the President. Additionally, she is a member of Order of Omega and on the Model United Nations competition team. In her free time, Kanika enjoys reading, watching reality television, going on long walks, and spending time with friends and family. After graduation, Kanika plans to attend law school and pursue a career in international law. She is extremely honored and excited to serve SPIA and the University as an Ambassador this year!

 

Bridget Peach
Major: International Affairs, Russian, & Romance Languages

Bridget Peach is a third-year from Wilmington, Delaware, majoring in International Affairs, Romance Languages, and Russian. At UGA, she is involved in the Georgia Political Review, the Loch Johnson Society, Gamma Phi Beta Sorority, and UGA Miracle. Bridget is also a Critical Language Scholarship Alumni Ambassador and participated in CLS Spark Russian in 2023. She is now a part of the Russian Flagship Program and traveled to Riga, Latvia, this past summer to continue her Russian studies. Upon graduation, Bridget plans to pursue a career in foreign affairs and policy in Washington, D.C..

 

Clare Petkash
Major: Political Science & International Affairs
Minor: Environmental Law & Business
Certificate: Sustainability

Clare Petkash is a fourth-year student from Milton, Georgia. She is a double major in political science and international affairs, with minors in business and environmental law and a certificate in sustainability. Clare is involved with the Club Cross Country and Track Team and UGArden Club on campus. She loves to attend the Athens Farmers Market, go for runs and walks, read, and spend time outdoors and with friends. Clare has experience in campaigning, community outreach and education, sustainable agriculture, public policy, and nonprofit work through the Democratic Party of Georgia, AmeriCorps VISTA, Athens-Oconee CASA, and Athens Land Trust. She was a part of the second cohort of the SPIA Firenze Program in 2023, where she had the opportunity to expand her perspective on politics and international affairs. During the summer of 2024, Clare will work with the State Executive Director of the USDA Farm Service Agency in Columbia, South Carolina, to execute key agency programs that seek to uplift and enhance the farming community. Clare is interested in sustainability and environmental policy, particularly renewable energy and sustainable agriculture. After graduation, Clare hopes to pursue a master’s degree in Public Administration and work in renewable energy policy or sustainable agriculture.

 

Anna Rose Powell
Major: International Affairs & Spanish
Minor: Environmental Health Science
Certificate: Global Health

Anna Rose Powell is an International Affairs and Spanish double major from Marietta, GA, planning to graduate in May 2026. At UGA, she has been involved in Bag the Bag, Rescue Paws, Shop with a Bulldog, and the Spanish living community at Mary Lyndon. Anna Rose hopes to pursue areas of environmental and health policy after graduation and to incorporate her language skills into her career. She is also excited to participate in SPIA’s Politics of the National Parks Program in Summer 2024 and hopes to study abroad in Spain before graduation. She’s very excited to be more involved in SPIA by being an ambassador this year!

 

Anna Rachwalski
Major: Political Science, English, & Economics
Certificate: Public Affairs Professional Certificate in Applied Politics

Anna Rachwalski is a third-year from Atlanta, GA majoring in Political Science, English, and Economics, with an Applied Politics Certificate. Anna is a recipient of the Foundation Fellowship and a student at the Morehead Honors College. She conducts undergraduate research through the Crisis Communication Think Tank, serves as an Honors Teaching Assistant, and is a member of the Period Project and Women in Economics clubs. She has studied abroad at Oxford and Edinburgh Universities and participated in UGA’s Discover Abroad Program in Hawaii, Fiji, Australia, and New Zealand. This past summer, she interned in Washington, DC.

 

Lucy Respess
Major: Political Science & Public Relations
Certificate: Public Affairs Communication

Lucy Respess is a third-year student from Atlanta, GA, double majoring in political science and public relations. She is also pursuing a certificate in public affairs communications, offered jointly by SPIA and Grady College. This past summer, Lucy had the opportunity to study abroad in Stellenbosch, South Africa through SPIA. As an ambassador, she is excited to communicate her enthusiasm for the school, meet special guests, and encourage prospective students to visit SPIA and UGA. Upon graduation, Lucy plans to pursue a government relations or campaign strategy career.

 

Ian Roberts
Major: Political Science, History, & Religion

Ian Roberts is a third-year from Americus, Georgia, with majors in Political Science, History, and Religion. In addition to serving as a SPIA Ambassador, Ian also serves as a Religion Department Ambassador, student leader, and DEI Chair of the Episcopal Campus Ministry at UGA, Legislative Fellow in the Spencer Frye Fellowship, and Student Docent in UGA’s Anne Frank Volunteers program. In both his professional and private life, Ian passionately advocates for social justice, gender and racial equality, and human rights. As a returning SPIA Ambassador, Ian is excited to continue advocating, representing, and building community for all School of Public and International Affairs students.

 

Bridget Sheridan
Major: International Affairs & German
Minor: Music & History
Certificate: Public Affairs Professional Certificate in Applied Politics

Bridget Sheridan is a third-year student from the Washington, DC, suburb of Fairfax, Virginia. She has a wide variety of interests, which are reflected in her academic concentrations in International Affairs, German, Saxophone Performance, and History. She has a particular interest in Middle Eastern and European affairs, studied German and environmental science in Freiburg, Germany, in the summer of 2023, and had the opportunity to represent UGA as a Halle Foundation Scholar at the 2023 German American Conference at Harvard. Bridget is a proud and dedicated member of the Redcoat Marching Band, serving as a traveling Derbies and basketball band member.

 

Meera Srinivasan
Major: Political Science & International Affairs
Certificate: Public Affairs Professional Certificate in Applied Politics

Meera is a third-year student from Columbus, Georgia, pursuing degrees in Political Science and International Affairs, a certificate in Applied Politics, and a master’s degree in Public Administration through the Double Dawgs program. In addition to being a SPIA Ambassador, she is the Fellowship Director of the Spencer Frye Fellowship, a staff member with The Backpack Project, Inc., and a member of the UGA Hodgson Singers. She enjoys reading, singing, and learning new languages in her free time. After graduation, Meera hopes to pursue a career in public service and create a positive impact through policy. She is very excited to represent SPIA and engage with the broader community as an Ambassador!

 

Will Stevens

Major: International Affairs & Journalism
Minor: General Business
Certificate: Public Affairs Professional Certificate in Applied Politics

Will Stevens is a second-year student double-majoring in International Affairs and Journalism from Jefferson, GA. Will currently serves as the Morehead Honors College Senator is an active member of Beta Upsilon Chi (BYX), and attends Prince Avenue Baptist Church. In addition to these commitments, Will works as the Communications Director for a Board of Education campaign in Barrow County. As for the rest of his college career, Will is excited to pursue study abroad and internship opportunities.

 

Summer Stuckey
Major: Political Science & International Affairs
Certificate: Legal Disparity and Equity Service

Summer Stuckey is a second-year Honors student from Scottsdale, Arizona. She is double majoring in Political Science and International Affairs. She is a shift lead at Campus Kitchen and has spent over 96 hours volunteering this academic year.
She is involved in UGA Miracle, Hearts for the Homeless, and a member of Gamma Phi Beta sorority. Over the summer of 2024, she is excited to study abroad in Florence with the SPIA Firenze Maymester Program. After graduation, she plans to attend law school and pursue a career in Medical Malpractice law.

 

Eliza Taylor
Major: Political Science & International Affairs
Minor: Law, Jurisprudence and the State
Certificate: Sustainability

Eliza is a fourth-year student from Charleston, South Carolina. She is a double major in Political Science and International Affairs, with a minor in Law and a Sustainability certificate. After graduation, she plans to attend law school and pursue a career in environmental law. Eliza is involved in the undergraduate research program, through which she has had the opportunity to publish and present on environmental politics. Eliza is also a student employee at the UGA Outdoor Recreation Center, where she leads PE backpacking trips. She is also involved in the Undergraduate Mock Trial Team, Phi Alpha Delta pre-law fraternity, Order of Omega, and Gamma Phi Beta Sorority on campus. Eliza enjoys mountain biking, reading, and spending time with friends and family in her free time. She is very excited to serve SPIA and the University as an ambassador this year!

 

Brayden Titus
Major: International Affairs

Brayden Titus is a third-year student from Canton, GA. He is currently pursuing a degree in International Affairs. He is a part of the Double Dawgs Program to earn his Master of Public Administration specializing in International Policy and Administration. He studied abroad during the summer of 2023, participating in Stellenbosch Maymester, focusing on repress and dissent in South Africa. Brayden will spend the 2024 Maymester studying abroad in Australia and New Zealand as a part of Warnell Discover Abroad. In addition to participating in the SPIA Ambassador program, Brayden is a part of the GLOBIS Human Rights Lab. This is his first year as an ambassador, and he looks forward to serving SPIA.

 

Saige Wakefield
Major: Political Science & International Affairs
Minor: Criminal Justice Studies

Saige is a second-year student from Americus, Georgia. She is a double major in Political Science and International Affairs (on the pre-law track) with a minor in Criminal Justice Studies. Her campus involvement includes the Student Government Association, Georgia Daze, the Black Pre-Law Association, and many more. Saige also works at the Sumter County Courthouse where she started interning there her junior year of high school. After undergraduate, she plans to attend law school to pursue a career in criminal or environmental law. With SPIA, Saige hopes to complete the Washington Semester program and study abroad in Cortona, Italy. As a SPIA Ambassador, Saige is more than excited to serve and represent SPIA, SPIA students, and the university.

 

Jacob Weiszer
Major: International Affairs & Management Information Systems

Jacob Weiszer is a third-year Honors student from Athens, GA. He is studying International Affairs and Management Information Systems and would like to either attend law school or pursue a career in cybersecurity after graduation. Jacob is a UGA Model United Nations team member, an active staff writer for the Georgia Political Review, and a part of the Society for Management Information Systems on campus. This past summer, Jacob got the opportunity to study abroad in the United Kingdom and Ireland. He looks forward to representing SPIA as an ambassador for the 2024-25 school year!

 

Shyneria Whatley
Major: Political Science
Minor: Law, Jurisprudence and the State
Certificate: Public Affairs Professional Certificate in Applied Politics

Shyneria Whatley is a Political Science Major from Columbus, Georgia. She is also pursuing a minor in Law, Jurisprudence, & the State and a certificate in Applied Politics. She has completed internships for the Sanford Bishop Campaign and at the Athens Western Judicial Circuit Office. Shyneria will spend the 2024 Maymester studying abroad in Florence and Rome, Italy, through the SPIA a Firenze program. After completing her undergraduate degree, Shyneria intends to attend law school. This will be her first year as a SPIA ambassador, and she is very grateful for the opportunity!

 

Breigha Young
Major: Political Science & International Affairs

Since joining the University of Georgia in 2022, Breigha Young is a fourth-year International Affairs and Political Science double major. Before this, she studied business studies and marketing at the University of Stirling in Scotland. While abroad, she realized she had a passion for people and politics and decided to switch gears to pursue her drives full-time. As a result, she transferred to UGA after her freshman year abroad and, since then, has worked on several political campaigns and on-campus organizations. Most notably, she is the former president of the UGA Transfer Student Club, which works to provide a community to recent transfers and help them connect to their new home at UGA. After graduating in May 2025, she hopes to undertake her master’s in International Policy/Affairs to pursue a career in diplomacy and human security.


Special thanks to the Parents Leadership Council for their generous support of the SPIA Ambassadors. The SPIA Ambassadors received a grant to help fund students’ transportation to various Atlanta opportunities for the upcoming school year.