Samuel Leon (Year 1)

I was born and raised in Mexico City. I am a graduate of Politics and Public Administration of the Universidad Iberoamericana. I have an extensive career in the public sector; I have worked in the Mexican federal government´s social security sector, as an advisor for the Mexican Senate on two occasions, in the tourism sector, and in the Federal Electricity Commission (Mexico´s former publicly-owned electricity monopoly). I have also had experience as a public security and energy analyst in Mexico´s non-governmental sector. In my free time, I love to run and practise boxing. I am a huge fan of cinema, modern art, a foodie and an avid concert goer. I am looking forward to doing my research on Mexico´s energy sector or the challenges the country is facing regarding public security, and I am deeply interested in how academic research can influence public policy.  

Adriana Unzueta

I was born and raised in Bolivia, and I moved to Peru when I was 14 years old. I majored in Business Administration at IE University in Spain and attended an exchange programme focused on development management at McGill University in Canada. After graduation, I started working at the Organization of American States (OAS) in Washington DC. During my time at the OAS, I realized that I wanted to delve deeper into the political and economic dynamics of Latin America and, therefore, I applied to the MSc in Latin American Studies. My research interests include poverty, informality and water issues in Bolivia. I truly aspire to become a professional with the necessary vision and skills to drive growth and boost economic development in my country. In my spare time, I love to play tennis, hang out with friends and drink coffee.  

Juliana Tappe Ortiz (Year 1)

I have a background in International Relations and Politics. In the past few years, I have worked as a researcher at different think tanks in Santiago de Chile, Medellín, Hamburg, Cape Town and Rio de Janeiro. My research focuses on comparative area studies concerning peace and conflict studies. In particular, I am interested in political leaders' individual impact on peace processes and the power of psychology in politics. In my free time I love going to the theatre and hiking in the mountains of Colombia and Germany.

Paola Bruni

My interest in Latin American history and politics is a personal one, as I grew up in Caracas, Venezuela. Having spent the last few years in London, I graduated with an LLB law degree, but maintained my connection to Latin America via legal internships in Venezuela and Brazil. I am keen to continue studying the region in an academic context, gaining insight into economic and political conflict drivers in my home country and others, as well as exploring complex issues such as transitional justice. In my free time I practise debating at the Oxford Union, and volunteer at the Innocence Project London.

Sebastian Cajias

I am a former Australian Award Scholar. I have a BA in Public Administration and a Master in Public Policy specialising in economic policy from the Australian National University. I am the current President of the Oxford Bolivian Society and Secretary of the Oxford Latin American Society. In my free time I enjoy rowing with the St. Antony's Boat Club and hanging out with friends in the cafeteria. I have lived and worked in Chile, Mexico and Bolivia, and have travelled extensively in Latin America, Europe and South East Asia. I have taught public policy issues to several audiences and have focused most of my work on educational issues, corruption, migration and democracy.

Johanna Andrango

I am from Quito, Ecuador. One of my main motivations in order to do a double major in Economics and International Relations was Latin American Development. Throughout my undergraduate programmes I worked as a research assistant for five years. I assisted with different projects ranging from economic experiments, analysing macroeconomic data, assisting the legislative observatory of the Ecuadorian Assembly, among others. With my training in political economy, I came to the LAC to deepen my understanding of the relationship between populism, economic growth and inequality within the region. During my free time, I enjoy dancing to Latin music, reading and photography.

Caylin Louis Moore

I was awarded a 2017 Rhodes Scholarship and I'm attending the University of Oxford to earn an MSc in Latin American Studies. I am a recent graduate of Texas Christian University, earning a degree in economics, with minors in mathematics and sociology. I was raised on the border between Compton and Carson, California. I overcame poverty, gang violence, and the incarceration of my father to distinguish myself as a standout high school and college football player and a dedicated student. I was a Division-One athlete in college Football for TCU, and was selected to the Fulbright Summer Institute to study the trans-Atlantic slave trade at the University of Bristol in 2014. The following year, I was chosen to attend the PPIA Junior Summer Institute at Princeton University. I am the founder and president of SPARK (Strong Players Are Reaching Kids), a youth outreach organization of student-athletes who encourage middle and high school youths to strive to attend college. I am also expanding influence as a community organiser with a venture I am starting called "Fades for Grades" to offer young black men in the inner-city free haircuts for bringing their reports to the barbershop. I also have previous experience as a reading teacher for middle school students as part of the Children’s Defense Fund Freedom schools reading-enrichment programme. I have signed with a major publisher to write my first auto-biographical book which will be published within the next year. 

I am newly married to a beautiful Paraguayan woman, Paola Moore (formerly Paola Miranda-Cardozo). My research interests involve Paraguay and issues related to education and wealth distribution. I am looking forward to combining my life experiences and training in Latin American studies to work in Public Policy in the United States in the near future. 

Gustavo Hirsch

I am a Brazilian lawyer with a specialisation in international relations. I am interested in Latin American politics, geopolitics, history, economy, sociology, music, and literature. I am currently focused on country risk analysis. Before coming to Oxford, I practised patent law and civil law in Rio de Janeiro; then studied international relations at IUPERJ, where I wrote a paper on the Brazilian foreign policy toward Africa. I also worked at the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro (UFRJ) as an international advisor in the Graduate Institute of Engineering (COPPE).

Nicolas Prados (Year 1)

I was born and raised in Madrid, Spain, before moving to the UK to do my undergraduate in History and Film Studies at Sussex University. It was when I was doing my dissertation in my final year that I turned towards Latin American history, and the revolutionary Caribbean in the 1950s in particular. After graduating I moved to Mexico City looking for work and a change of pace from peaceful Brighton. I worked as a journalist there for around 2 years, returning to the UK for a year in order to attend film school. I applied to the Latin American Centre to further explore the complex networks and relationships that bounded revolutionary exiles in the Caribbean during the 1940s and 50s. 

Finn Lowery

I completed my undergraduate studies in law, philosophy and French. My areas of interest in these disciplines included the settlement of historical grievances, the interplay between indigenous worldviews and mainstream legal systems, and the impact of counter-terrorism strategies on the criminal justice system.

I received a number of awards in these areas and gained experience at the United Nations International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia and a large commercial law firm in New Zealand.

I am reading for the MSc in Latin American Studies with a view to broadening my skills and knowledge base. In particular, I hope to gain a working understanding of development economics . In addition, I have always been passionate about Latin America for its language and culture, and I hope to work there for a time. 


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