Madison McCormick is from Los Angeles, California and graduated from the MA International Relations Program in 2017. She completed her undergraduate studies at NYU in Global Liberal Studies in 2016.
Where do you currently work and what do you do there?
I currently work for Comic Relief USA, a recent nonprofit born out of the UK Comic Relief that was founded by screenwriter and producer Richard Curtis in the 1980s. I am a grants coordinator for the Red Nose Day campaign that aims to end child poverty. My main role, however, is to manage the Hand in Hand Hurricane Relief Fund, which includes grants management, impact reporting, and monitoring and evaluation site visits for 16 organizations we funded to focus on hurricane recovery from Harvey, Irma, and Maria.
How did the IR Program prepare you for what you're doing now?
While in the IR program and afterward, I have worked for organizations like Comic Relief and Global Citizen that aim to end extreme poverty. These missions align with the United Nation's Sustainable Development Goals agenda. The courses, professors, and students that I engaged in the IR program helped me gain deeper insight into the UN systems and global policy. The research and writing component of nearly every class helped me hone my analytical and communications skills that have been transferrable in any position.
Why did you choose the IR program at NYU? I was a junior at NYU studying abroad in Italy at the time that I decided I wanted to continue my studies at NYU. My bachelors had more of a liberal arts focus and after studying the European Union while in Florence and interning at the UNICEF Office of Research, I knew that I wanted to learn more in relation to international development and policy. So, I decided to pursue the advanced Bachelors-Masters program through NYU and was able to begin taking classes my senior year.
Which has been the class you most enjoyed? And the one in which you learned the most?
One of the classes I really enjoyed was 'Human Rights, Arts & Memory' taught by Arnaud Kurze. I found the intersection of arts, human rights, and international politics fit my interests perfectly and it even informed the subject of my thesis. Another class I loved and learned a lot from was 'Terrorism and Counterterrorism' taught by Stuart Gottlieb. This was a bit outside my comfort zone, but I found it to be a really insightful and important class for students who are interested in digesting the news we find every day.
What advice would you give to future students of the program?
I would advise students to invest time with their classmates and professors. The courses are important, but I find that everyone I encountered in the program was so fascinating and has such amazing backgrounds and lived experiences. I learned just as much, if not more, from the people I knew through NYU IR.
What is your favorite place on campus? What do you like best about student life at NYU?
Washington Square Park! Ever since I stepped on campus at 18 years old, I found Washington Square to be an energizing, yet peaceful place to hang out with friends or quickly catch up on readings before a class. After five years at NYU, one of the things I like best about student life at NYU is that everyone's experience is very different. It's all what you make of it.
What is the best thing about living in NYC?
The endless opportunities. Not only for work but for cultural activities, people to meet, foods to taste, etc. It's an exhausting place to live because of that, but once you figure out what balance works for you, there is no other place like it.
Last Updated August 20th, 2019