Nicole Peisajovich

Political Science PhD, Columbia University

Why did you choose the M..A in Global Thought and how did it prepare you for your current position? 

The M.A. in Global Thought program caught my attention because of its very special mix of first-rate courses and academic flexibility. The M.A. Core Courses were all taught by renowned professors and they all dealt with cutting-edge problems. At the same time, the program was flexible enough to allow us to explore not just one department but Columbia University at large! I took courses from many different departments, including political science, philosophy, and journalism.

My experience as a Global Thought student gave me the invaluable opportunity to approach current problems from a truly interdisciplinary perspective. Being a PhD student now, I enormously appreciate the breadth and flexibility with which I could think about the world at that time. As I begin to specialize and narrow my research interests, I am thankful for the opportunity I had to zoom out and look at all of those big questions before.

Describe a favorite MA in Global Thought course or project and how it helped your academic, professional, and/or personal growth.

I really liked the “Global Politics and Culture” Core Course, at the time taught by Professors Akeel Bilgrami and Partha Chatterjee. I remember that was my very first class at Columbia. The course was mind-blowing, and thanks to it I started thinking about things I did not even consider before.

How did you come to work in your current career field and what inspires you about your work?

I have always been interested in politics, and while living in Argentina I was actively engaged in a political party, Partido de la Red, which sought to create more instances of direct citizen participation through a digital platform. That experience was enriching, but there were too many big questions I could still not answer. How were we to adapt our whole inherited political structures to make them compatible with twenty-first century technologies? The task was hard, and the questions were both practical and theoretical. After the M.A. in Global Thought, I didn’t have definitive answers and I had more questions instead! But I was fascinated by the debates that I encountered, and felt a profound need to keep studying. That’s how I ended up pursuing a PhD in Political Science. I am still trying to answer those questions.

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Nicole Peisajovich, Class of 2017