Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey. Formerly the Monterey Institute of International Studies.

The MIIS Experience in 60 Seconds

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This new series features a different student each week from a range of degree programs offered at the Monterey Institute of International Studies.

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Carmen Ibarra

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Fast Fact: Carmen retired from the U.S. Air Force as an Airborne Linguist after 26 years of service.

“I like the fact that all the professors are active in their respective fields; in other words, they practice what they preach...”

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Rhiannon Marie Bramer: Boren Fellow

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Fast Fact: Rhiannon was awarded a Boren Scholarship to spend the 2010-2011 academic year in Mongolia.

"Professor Langholz’s research methods class helped me develop a successful research proposal, and it was through..."

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Serving Veterans

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Army veteran Ross Belliveau talks about the Monterey Institute's commitment to military veterans through the Yellow Ribbon Program.

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Enjoy the Journey

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MIIS student Qianxi Xiao talks about what he learned on a 10-day solo walk down the coast of central California.

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Changing Times in Cuba

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Monterey Institute students go on a once-in-a-lifetime immersive learning trip to Cuba.

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Manuela Silveira

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Fast Fact: Manuela is the first student of the TLM Portuguese Program.

“I see localization not only as the art of making content available in other languages, but prepared to make sense to its target audience."

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Karen Hogue

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Fast Fact: Karen taught reactor physics at the U.S. Navy's Nuclear Power School prior to becoming a student at MIIS.

“I'm passionate about this field because I feel like there is so much opportunity to make a global difference.”

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Tamara Patton

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Fast Fact: Tamara specializes in the use of satellite imagery and virtual 3D modeling for nuclear nonproliferation and disarmament research and analysis.

“I found the NPTS program valuable for the way that it blends complex technical and policy training in a digestible manner.”

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Cristina Lopez

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Fast Fact: Cristina participated in a rescue and recovery disaster relief course in the south of France.

“My summer project consisted of filming a documentary about water insecurity in Nicaragua.”

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Derek Polka

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Fast Fact: Derek grew up on a dairy & agricultural farm in Moss Landing, a town in north Monterey County with a population of 204 people.

“The ability to provide food and an adequate wage for living is crucial if we wish to bring countries out of the trap of poverty.”

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Fareed Bailey

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Fast Fact: As a staffer at the Arizona State Senate, Fareed directly worked on nearly 60 pieces of legislation.

“I set out to acquire the skills integral to being a successful policymaker.”

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Shawn Harris

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Fast Fact:  Shawn made a documentary in Libya following the collapse of the Qaddafi Regime.

“I believe that in order to raise the global standard of living we have to address both conflict and economic development simultaneously.”

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Adam Kirk

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Fast Fact: Adam served in the Peace Corps, working with government units in rural Albania assisting in the development of tourism and waste management-based improvement projects.

“The best part about the MBA program at MIIS is its intimacy; that my professors are approachable and accessible...”

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Benjamin Couch

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Fast Fact:  Ben spent six months working on a social business model development project in Rajasthan, India for Traditional Medicinals, an herbal tea company. 

“I come away with a much richer perspective on global business than before...” 

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Matt Gleason

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Fast Fact:  Matt competes in Tough Mudder courses, some of the most brutal 7-12 mile obstacle courses in the country.  Think freezing-cold water traps, giant walls, mud runs and more!

“The Yellow Ribbon program is an admirable program and my attendance at MIIS would not be possible without it..."

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Megan Christenson

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Fast Fact: Megan taste tested several species of insects while living in the Ecuadorian Amazon in 2011.

“Business skills and tools are incorporated into subjects like sustainability, international development, and design thinking...”

 

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Caroline Cuddy

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Fast Fact: Caroline walked more than 500 miles of the mystical Camino de Santiago.

"Our collective experiences of travel, language learning and teaching and research make for a truly inspiring cohort of linguists!"

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Heidi Laidemitt

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Fast Fact:  Heidi and three of her colleagues were published in the CATESOL 2011 journal. 

"I was really drawn to the rare opportunity of living in such a small and diverse linguistic and cultural community." 

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Sarah DeMola

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Fast Fact: Sarah has taught English to diverse populations including child refugees in New York, college bound teens in California, and continuing education adults in India. 

“For me, teaching is really all about leading each individual student toward self-empowerment and self-discovery.” 

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Sky Lantz-Wagner

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Fast Fact:  Sky has swam with whale sharks in Mexico (and even has a whale shark tattoo on his foot!)

"Being in the TESOL program is like being part of the all-star team of language learning and teaching." 

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Yinghua Cai

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Fast Fact: Yinghua taught Mandarin Chinese by day and English by night over the summer of 2012.

“My professors are the best!!! Supportive and dedicated.”

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Magdalena Adam

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Fast Fact: Magdalena has run three half marathons to date and is planning on running in the San Francisco half marathon next year.

“Most of the professors are active translators, interpreters, and localization managers, so they really know..."

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Miranda Zhang

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Fast Fact: Miranda taught Chinese culture classes at high schools in Poland.

“The TLM program combines translation, technology and management together…and that enables me to think like a manager...”

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Environmental Entrepreneurs

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Two Monterey Institute alumni are helping the environment by delivering fresh local seafood to the Monterey Bay area. 

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Alyssa Poey

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DPMI Plus Assignment: Institute of International Education

"I see myself as a bridge-builder, and want to connect people with opportunities that challenge their understandings of the world and broaden their minds..."

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Elizabeth Edouard

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DPMI Plus Assignment: Jhpiego (Tanzania)

"Being in an international setting amongst mission-driven individuals working to impact social change, I find myself at home."

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Heidi Hansen

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DPMI Plus Assignment: Whale and Dolphin Conservation Society 

"Working with WDCS was a truly collaborative experience and gave me insight into the challenges and rewards of working with and for a small nonprofit."

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Rebecca Marcus

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DPMI Plus Assignment: Futures and Options 

"I appreciated the ability to work with such a small and growing organization because I got to experience all aspects of the organization."

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Alexandra Ogden

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Fast Fact: Alexandra is currently living 12,000 feet above sea level in rural Peru as a Peace Corps Master's International student.

"Professor Jason Scorse's approach to environmental policy is truly what I like most about the International Environmental..."

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Tierra de Agua Trailer

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Get a sneak peak at a documentary being made by 3 MIIS students that examines the struggle for clean water in Nicaragua.

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Winter Term Adventures

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The Institute students talk about their trips to India, El Salvador, Peru and Haiti over winter term.

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Harlem Shake

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The Institute takes part in the latest internet dance craze...check it out!

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Peter Fordos

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Works for: Cross Cultural Advisors

Title: Intercultural Consultant, Trainer and Coach

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Hope and Change for Venezuela

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Maria Luisa Olavarria (MAIPS '12) talks about using her education and experiences at the Monterey Institute to bring hope and change to Venezuela.

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Himayu Shiotani

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Fast Fact: Himayu enjoys talking passionately about disarmament, nonproliferation, arms control, political theory and international humanitarian law.

"The strength of the NPTS program is that students often have the opportunity to learn and share ideas directly with experts and practitioners in the field." 

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Zuleyma Bebell

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Fast Fact:  Zuleyma organized the first social enterprise coffee hour in Amman, Jordan.

"To be surrounded by such an intelligent, intellectual and accomplished group of people not only gives me endless topics for conversations but it's also motivational."  

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Sean Manzano

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Fast Fact:  Since taking up running five years ago, Sean has run races of all distances from 5Ks to marathons.

"I would like to work as a Foreign Service Officer for the State Department."

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Monica Kelsh

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Fast Fact:  Monica has been able to utilize her Spanish skills while living, studying, and traveling throughout Spain and Peru.

"I love the fact that I can do fieldwork abroad and come back to incorporate it into my academic work."

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Chase Coniglio

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Fast Fact:  Chase served as a rural health facilitator with the Peace Corps in El Salvador.

“I want to be an agent of change in the international policy arena.”

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Alaina Robertson

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Fast Fact: Alaina is an avid climber.  She has scaled El Capitan, summited Mount McKinley and participated in a Himalayan expedition. 

“MIIS’s curriculum is keeping pace with the real world.” 

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Tami Weiss

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Fast Fact: Tami has taken cooking classes on 6 continents.

"My absolute favorite thing about the IEP program is the professors!"

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Silvia Sanchez

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Fast Fact: Silvia hiked the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu.

"My favorite thing is definitely the faculty's dedication to the students and the program."

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Kat Gordon

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Fast Fact: Kat spent a whole afternoon diving with great white sharks in South Africa.

"I like the tight knit community and the responsiveness of the program to student needs..."

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Laura Henson

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Fast Fact: Lauren ran a private marathon with two other volunteers down the national highway of Mozambique.

"I genuinely want to be a part of something that is much bigger than myself..."

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James Knuckles

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Fast Fact: James traveled to 10 countries on a 100-day trip around the world.

"My peers in the IEP program hail from every corner of the planet...learning from them is my favorite part..."

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Catherine Carlton

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Fast Fact: Catherine works at a permaculture NGO in Malawi.

"My favorite aspect of the International Environmental Policy program was the individual attention each student received..."

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Allysum Pohl

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Fast Fact: Allysum lived on a sailboat as a kid and is a contortionist.

"I get to practice using tools and writing and presenting projects like I will be doing in my career for years to come..."

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Adam Fullerton

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Fast Fact: Adam sailed from San Diego to South Africa when he was 16 as part of a semester at sea program.

"My favorite part of the IEP program is the professional curriculum that not only gives students a strong academic..."

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MIIS Fall-ies 2012

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Check out all the amazing performances from the Institute's annual talent show.

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Conflict Resolution in Bosnia

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Quinn VanValer-Campbell (MAIPS '12) talks about her work with women survivors of the 1995 massacre in Srebrenica, Bosnia.

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Oil Worker to Conservationist

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Alfhild Aspelin (MAIEP '12) tells us how she went from working in the oil industry to pursuing an environmental policy degree.

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Hard Work, Love, Hard Work

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Dustin Brumley (TLM '10) talks about life after graduation including starting his own business and getting married.

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Economics of the Environment

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Ashley Camhi (MAIEP '09) talks about her work on environmental projects with the World Bank and the Inter-American Development Bank.

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Rebuilding Hope for Haiti

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Molly Lineberger (MBA '03) tells her story of working with Catholic Relief Services in Haiti providing relief work to people living with HIV and survivors of the 2010 earthquake.

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