Olympics 2024:

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Nicole Santiago G'19

MA in Diplomacy and International Law

I was born in the US and grew up in Kansas City. I went to college in Chicago and law school in Boston, then worked in Washington DC at an international law firm for four years. I have family from Puerto Rico and from France, so I grew up hearing both Spanish and French. Today, I speak Spanish comfortably, and being in Paris is instrumental in helping develop full French fluency. 

I started visiting France as a little girl and I have loved this country ever since. Therefore, it has always been a goal of mine to live here. When I started thinking about the next stage in my career, I sought opportunities that would enable me to live in France while further developing my professional interests. The MA in Diplomacy and International Law seemed like a perfect fit. The coursework, particularly the practicums in The Hague and at Oxford University, are directly in line with my professional experiences and interests, and present exciting new challenges that I did not feel I could get at another university. Furthermore, working with classmates from different backgrounds and countries has been especially valuable. I appreciate the exchange of diverse perspectives and the opportunity to collectively think critically about responses to global issues.  

I am the student chair of AUP's Working Group on Human Rights, which is an interdisciplinary group dedicated to the development of international law. The group was founded by faculty, including my program director Professor Susan Perry, as a platform for the AUP community to make contributions to the creation of international law at the United Nations. With Professor Perry's incredible guidance, the Working Group made its first submission of the 2018–19 school year in October to the UN Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights on the rights of refugees and migrants to access basic digital technologies. After we submitted, I had the honor of traveling to Geneva to make a short presentation to the Committee. I am also assisting Professor Perry with a class on international human rights law and I work as a writing tutor in the AUP Writing Lab. 

AUP has given me the connections I need and the opportunity to develop substantive knowledge necessary to be a qualified and competitive candidate.

Nicole Santiago '19

Being in Paris and connected to an incredible network of professors and alumni is amazing. Interests I’ve expressed have often been met with offers to connect me to exciting opportunities and people who are willing to have meaningful exchanges. Studying at AUP has given me opportunities that seemed implausible for someone early in her career. When choosing a university, I knew I wanted to be closer to innovations in international law coming out of Europe. I also wanted to build close connections with my peers and professors, in a tight-knit community where I could get to know everyone and take full advantage of the opportunities available. That is one way in which AUP stood out, as it’s a perfect blend. 

I am very interested in staying on to work in Europe, particularly as many of the world's international law institutions are here. AUP has given me the connections I need and the opportunity to develop substantive knowledge necessary to be a qualified and competitive candidate. It goes without saying that Paris is a beautiful city, and it is such a treat to walk by her beautiful monuments every day. I appreciate the immense diversity of people and cultural experiences here, especially as it relates to thinking critically and inclusively about the future of our world.