Shao grew up in Singapore and had just completed his BSc in Economics in University College London. His academic interests lie in the areas of public sector economics and public policy analysis. While studying in London, he picked up Spanish as a third language in UCL’s language centre. Throughout his 3 years of undergraduate studies, Shao travelled extensively in Europe, backpacking across the continent on numerous occasions. Of which, he spent much time wandering in Spain and grew fond of the language, food and culture. Having limited academic experience in Latin American Studies, Shao is keen to fill the gaps and draw parallels to his travel experiences in Spain. A scholarship recipient from the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore, his foray into CLAS Master’s program also has a career driven focus as he is expected to return as a policy analyst specialising in the Latin American region. Shao is excited to discover Latin America and hopes to make the most of his time in Stanford. Outside of academics, Shao enjoys sports and is a die-hard fan of Manchester United. He also spends much time reading novels and experimenting with European and Asian cooking, and is likely to add Latin American to that in due time. He plans to backpack across South America at some point, though not quite “Diarios de motocicleta” style.
Yuki Bailey received her B.A. in Anthropology from Yale University in 2013. Born in Tokyo, Yuki was raised in a multicultural and multilingual household and has always possessed a strong interest in foreign languages. She is especially intrigued by the Spanish and Portuguese languages and spent this past year conducting a research project with the Yale Fox Fellowship in Brazil, Argentina, and Peru. Connecting her Japanese roots to Latin America, Yuki's research explored the history of the Japanese communities in these South American countries. Her time abroad furthered her interest in Latin America, especially the issues of immigration, self-identity, and linguistic diversity in this region of the world. Yuki is thus very excited to delve into the Latin American Studies graduate coursework at Stanford.
Kate Bellerose recently graduated from Colby College with a double major in Spanish and Latin American Studies. Her strong interest in the Spanish language encouraged her to spend six months studying abroad in Santiago, Chile during her junior year. The following year, she spent another month abroad, this time in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, in order to pursue her interests in both the Portuguese language and Brazilian culture. Kate hopes to continue her study of both languages while at Stanford as well as to expand upon her current knowledge of the region's historical and contemporary development.
Born and raised in Connecticut, Gabrielle graduated from St. Joseph’s University in Philadelphia Magna Cum Laude with a B.A. in International Relations. As an undergraduate, Gabrielle worked with immigrants at a welcome center in North Philadelphia and studied abroad in Lima at the Pontificia Universidad Católica del Perú. In 2011, she was inducted into the Phi Beta Kappa honor society. Upon graduating, she was granted a Fulbright English Teaching Assistantship in Guatemala and taught at the Universidad del Valle de Guatemala Campus Sur, assisted the U.S. Embassy in its local English Access Microscholarship Program, and tried to learn how to make corn tortillas (a skill she has yet to perfect). Before she joined the M.A. program, Gabrielle lived in Astoria and worked as a Program Assistant for The Peter and Carmen Lucia Buck Foundation in New York City. Gabrielle’s research interests include indigenous cultures, social movements, and human rights. This year, she hopes to learn more about food security, agriculture, and trade in Latin America. She enjoys good fiction, playing soccer, and exploring city parks.
Fajin Hu has a B.A. in Spanish Studies from the University of International Business and Economics, Beijing, China. As an undergraduate student, she studied in Cuba for an exchange program, where her interests in Latin American Studies crystallized. After graduation, she lived and worked in Peru and Venezuela for approximately three years. Fajin’s experiences in these countries have made her decide to pursue a graduate degree in Latin American Studies so as to deepen her knowledge of the region and improve analytical and problem-solving skills. Her distinct research interests include regional integration, democratization, leftist trends, education in the Andean region of Peru, and China-Latin American relations. She is eager to join Stanford’s extraordinary community of peers and scholars. In her free time, she enjoys reading, traveling, watching tennis and learning languages.
David has a Bachelor of Science in Sport Management from Springfield College and an MBA from the College of William & Mary. As an undergraduate, he was a member of the varsity soccer team and completed an internship with Major League Soccer. Prior to his MBA studies, he spent over a year teaching in Chile with the English Opens Doors program. After working in Chile and traveling throughout South America, David is excited about increasing his knowledge of the region while at Stanford. In his free time, David enjoys playing soccer, watching movies, and traveling.
Linda Madrid was born and raised in the San Francisco Bay Area. She graduated from UC Berkeley in May 2013 with a major in Latin American Studies and a minor in Spanish. She spent six months living in Brazil, where she studied Portuguese language and Brazilian culture at Pontifical Catholic University of Rio de Janeiro. She participated in Semester at Sea and was able to circumnavigate the world and experience diverse cultures, languages, and food. Linda also spent a summer abroad in Mexico City, where she investigated the formation of the contemporary Mexican identity. Her study abroad experiences helped her discover her passion for traveling and for immersing herself in new cultures. Since graduating, she has worked as a legal assistant at an immigration law office in San Francisco. As a member of the Latin American Studies Master's Program, Linda plans to focus on the effects of U.S. foreign policy in Latin America and the relationship of this effect to transnational migration. She also plans to further develop her Portuguese language skills. During her free time, Linda enjoys traveling, reading, yoga, hanging out with friends, and playing with her dogs.
Imán is a Dominican social worker, scholar, and playwright. She graduated from Instituto Tecnológico de Santo Domingo (INTEC) with a BA in social work, and then went on to receive her MA in Sexuality Studies from San Francisco State University. Her past work has focused on sexual violence prevention, the privatization of bodies in late capitalism, and HIV disclosure in Latina/o communities. Her experience living in both the Caribbean and South America drove her to study the ways sexuality and eroticism are understood and experienced throughout Latin America, as well as their role in Dominican-Haitian political tension and conflict. She hopes to pursue a career in academia, public policy design in the Dominican Republic and continue to write plays.
Jennifer graduated with a B.A. in Anthropology and a minor in Spanish from Stanford and with another year here coming her way, you can say she still has separation anxiety from leaving her lovely school. Her academic interests lie in health and medicine from the local perspective, particularly in small, marginalized communities in Latin America. Outside of school, Jennifer likes to watch horror movies, beat her sisters at badminton, and pretend to know how to cook. She's excited to join the LAS M.A. family!
A native of Chennai, India, Hari Seshasayee’s interest in Latin America stems from his time living in Peru and Brazil. In Lima, he developed and helped implement a national plan for AIESEC Peru (including for Arequipa and Piura), which facilitated internship programmes and developmental projects with other countries. He also travelled to Brazil to coordinate projects in Sao Paulo, Goiânia, Londrina, Florianopolis, Porto Alegre and Santa Maria. Upon returning to India, he taught Spanish at a language institution in Chennai, and reported news for the Hindustan Times. For the past three years, he worked with Gateway House, a foreign policy think tank, where he managed the website, worked with the co-founders of the organization on the members-only newsletter, and also researched on India-Latin America relations. As a Senior Researcher on Latin American Studies, he engaged with research institutions and scholars from the region. He was also Gateway House’s representative in New Delhi from 2013-14, where he liaised with the media, think tanks, diplomatic missions, India’s Ministry of External Affairs and business chambers. Hari holds a Bachelor's degree in Mass Media (Journalism major) from the University of Mumbai, and speaks English, Spanish, Hindi, Tamil and some Portuguese.
Victoria Virasingh was born in Arlington, VA and spent her early childhood and subsequent summers in Ecuador where her family resides. In undergrad, she explored international relations through the perspective of anthropology, economics, literature, and history. She is particularly passionate about international women's issues, energy conservation, and social and economic development in Latin America. She is excited to be apart of the M.A. in Latin American Studies class of 2015 and she plans to pursue a career in international development. In her spare time, she loves to do hot yoga, and enjoys traveling with friends and family.