BAIS Class of 2009 Alumni Update

If you are member of the Class of '09, but not featured here, send us an update! And don't forget to "Like" our BAIS Alumni Facebook Page!

Maribel AvalosMaribel (Avalos) Halstead
(Peace and Conflict, Latin American Studies)
I have been working at Genentech for almost a year now. My passion for helping others as well as a great interest in the sciences led me to this position. I support studies that are in the late stage of the clinical trial period. The molecule that I am currently working with is Actemra and there are many studies that are being conducted under this one molecule. Actemra is a prescription medicine called an interleukin-6 (IL-6) receptor inhibitor. Actemra is used to treat adults with moderately to severely active rheumatoid arthritis (RA). It is very rewarding to know that I am working for a company that is so adament about the well being of others. Genentech has allowed me to continue my work in the community by offering many clubs on our campus as well as many volunteering opportunities. The possibilities are endless and I am also excited because Genentech has given me an opportunity to go back to school. I am also studying for the GRE and will apply to grad school next Fall. (07/18/12)

Stacey BrethauerStacey Brethauer
(Global Politics and Societies, European Studies)
I have worked in Washington, DC since graduating in 2009, and I am currently a Program Manager with the Center for Government Leadership at the Partnership for Public Service. We are a nonpartisan non-profit organization that works to revitalize our federal government by inspiring a new generation to serve and by transforming the way the government works. In my role, I manage a portfolio of programs and events designed to prepare federal leaders to solve national challenges by strengthening their leadership skillsets. In over four years, I have worked with thousands of federal employees at almost every federal agency; however, my time has been spent mostly with the Department of Homeland Security, the Department of Education and the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. Prior to working at the Partnership, I interned for the New European Democracies Program at the Center for Strategic and International Studies. While at CSIS, I focused my research on the August 2008 Russia-Georgia conflict as well as human security and unconventional security threats present in the Balkans. (07/19/14)

RISE recipientsCecily Cook
(Peace and Conflict Studies, Middle Eastern Studies)
I just finished my Master's degree in Middle Eastern Studies at Lund University in Sweden. During the program last fall, I went to northern Iraq to volunteer with a local women's organization and conduct fieldwork for my thesis. While I was there I began collecting donations of clothing, food, shoes, bedding, etc. and also money, which was used to buy the same items, for the tens of thousands of Syrian refugees coming in to the region. There was such a HUGE response from the community in Erbil - both local and expat - that two friends and I have established an official organization called Refugee Integration, Support, and Education (RISE) Foundation to continue the project and begin additional activities, including a community center, providing sports equipment for kids, and a mobile health clinic. While until now funding has been primarily coming from private donations and fundraising events, we recently received a grant from the German Consulate for the community center and we will be applying for additional money from other organizations, such as the UN. (07/13/13)

Devon DaveyDevon Davey
(Global Politics and Societies, Latin American Studies)
Since graduating from International Studies with a focus in politics and societies in Latin America, I have earned my Master’s degree in Sustainable International Development from Brandeis University. I recently completed my fieldwork in Guadalajara, Mexico working at a non-profit in education and child rights. Before graduate school, I was supporting the Global Exchange in the mission in the development department. I have also lived in Nicaragua and Spain and love traveling. Recent trips include Kenya, the Ukraine, Ecuador, and Cambodia. (07/16/12)

Amanda Keating part 3Amanda Keating
(World Religions and Spiritualities, Middle Eastern Studies, African Studies)
Since 2010, I've lived in and worked for orphanages in Port-au-Prince with a variety of organizations. This year, I'm proud to announce that I have teamed up with Haitian community leaders to found a new organization called "Timoun Kiskeya," an education program designed to empower children in Haiti. This work has provided weekly enrichment classes to over 40 orphans while creating jobs for professional educators in Haiti. This has all been possible, thanks to the generosity of donors in the United States and the guidance of mentors from USF. We're always looking for volunteers to lend a hand in Haiti; it would be particularly special to connect USF students to this type of work. I'm also starting a Master's Programme in Anthropology at the University of London School of Oriental and Africa Studies in the Fall and I'm thrilled to continue my education. (07/26/13)


Chelsea MatthewsChelsea Matthews
(Environment & Development, Latin American Studies)
Immediately after graduating from USF I completed an internship with Rainforest Action Network (RAN), an environmental and human rights non-profit. While at RAN I worked on the Agribusiness campaign, which is fighting deforestation in Indonesia caused by palm oil plantation expansion. I took the year after my internship to travel both in the US and abroad. Some highlights include working in the Grand Teton National Park, volunteering with a grassroots disaster relief organization in Haiti, and supervising college volunteers doing community service projects in Peru with Amigos de las Americas (AMIGOS), an organization that empowers young leaders through cross-cultural immersion and service projects. I returned to San Francisco in the fall of 2011 to begin my current job at RAN as Forest Program Assistant. I continue to volunteer with AMIGOS in my free time as Training Director for the San Francisco Chapter where I train volunteers to participate in the summer program. (07/20/12)

Maggie McDonaldMaggie McDonald
(Peace and Conflict Studies, Latin American Studies)
I am currently a Peace Corps Volunteer in South Africa as an education volunteer in the schools and community resource project. I arrived in South Africa in July 2010 and will be teaching English and computers at two primary schools in a rural village in Limpopo Province for two years. I am learning the local language, which is Sepedi (or Northern Sotho), and am enjoying it a lot.


MartinMetzMartin Metz
(International Economics, Asian Studies)
Following graduation, I walked off campus and onto the Plastiki project. It was a 60-foot catamaran made of plastic and plastic bottles that was set to sail across the Pacific from San Francisco to Sydney, Australia. The first thing I did was reach out to the Mayor's Office, where I had interned. San Francisco and Sydney are Sister Cities, so we initiated two projects: a gift exchange that symbolized the two cities' mutual interests in the issue of plastic pollution, and a memorandum of understanding as an unconditional agreement to work together to solve the problem. The gift worked. However my efforts as a mediator between SF City Hall and Sydney City hall could only get a signature from Gavin Newsom. Sydney could not sign. Nonetheless, the Plastiki sailed in the spring of 2010 and arrived four months later after a grueling journey. Four years later, our newest endeavor is a company called The Lost Explorer, a play on our roots as adventurers. We are designing products and apparel for an adventure lifestyle, and then reinvesting profits back into the adventure community and conservation. I am also working on a personal project called "We Are the People," which is an agency that brings the values of the millennial generation to organizational transformation through strategic planning and innovation. (07/30/14)

Max ShermanMax Sherman
(Peace and Conflict Studies, African Studies)
After graduating USF in 2009, I moved back to my hometown of Los Angeles where I started studying for my real estate license exam. Soon after passing, I began working with Madison Partners, a commercial real estate firm based here in Los Angeles. I was the youngest broker ever hired by the firm, and after a year, I decided I wanted to move into a more creative field. Following a stint working for a finance start up, I was offered a position at Dreamworks Animation SKG. I work within the Strategic Alliance (Enterprise Marketing) group which acts as a lighthouse for the studio for our strategic partners. We show how our partner's technology allows us to create our amazing films in order to facilitate new business for them with their key customers. I have not totally strayed from my BAIS roots though as I am still actively involved with my passion for the international field whether it be promoting a charity close to my heart such as Charity: Water or planning my next foreign adventure trip. Though my job is not directly related to my major I hope to work internationally in marketing and fill up my passport book! (07/18/12)