Mohammad Sayed Madadi graduated from the MA International Relations Program in 2016 and is from Kabul, Afghanistan. He is currently a student in the Masters in International Policy Studies at Stanford University.
Where are you currently and what are you working on?
I am finishing my second MA at Stanford focusing on political economy and international security. My main focus is the political economy of security, illicit economies, drug, terrorism, political culture and institutions. I also am a constant contributor to international outlets such as Foreign Policy, Al-Jazeera, the National Interest, the BBC and the Diplomat Magazine, writing on South Asia. I am also the West Coast Representative of Bamyan Foundation, a DC-based organization that supports primary education in Afghanistan.
How do you use the knowledge and skills acquired at NYU in your career?
I came to NYU with a few years of work experience and I found the classes very relevant and useful to think about the problems that I encountered. Now at my current program, my NYU knowledge helps me to have a more focused approach to international politics and explore it in a more delicate and complex way. My time at NYU also allowed me to improve my writing skills, something I growingly appreciate in my professional life.
Why did you choose the IR program at NYU?
I was looking for a place to not only match my expectations for academic rigor but also offer me the opportunity to supplement my knowledge through my experience beyond the classroom. NYU's location in downtown Manhattan allows it-and by extension the students-to immerse into a vibrant modern experience that brings together perspectives and human experiences from all around the world blending into all areas of expertise and interest from politics to art to finance. I thought there was no better way to learn about the complexity of international politics in the face of growing global interconnectivity than to simply living it.
What is one piece of advice you would give to someone regarding professional development?
What I have learned through experience that the greatest asset you can have is your ability to relate, to empathize. So, I would say focus on 'people' no matter what you do in your life. The ability to integrate 'people' into your thinking allows you to learn better and solve problems more creatively.
Last Updated August 20th, 2019