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SAIS Has Always Been the Dream

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Ángel Chica SánchezPublic Service Scholar, Master of International Public Policy

What made you choose SAIS?

Johns Hopkins SAIS has been always the dream. The first time I heard about SAIS was in 2002, when a college friend’s father advised me to invest in my career and look at opportunities at Johns Hopkins. Then, in 2012, I was working in Ethiopia as project officer for the Spanish Cooperation. It was then that I gathered more information about SAIS and started saving.By 2017 I had visited SAIS, stopping by the library and classrooms and speaking to students, and four other top universities. Because of SAIS’ African Studies Program, the long tradition and international vocation, the proximity to the World Bank Headquarters, as well as the inexplicable sensation that everything was oriented to the best academic accomplishment, SAIS remained my first option. I simply felt that I belonged. Now that I’m here, I’m incredibly excited.

I cannot imagine a more valuable and meaningful contribution to my society than being part of progress.

Why is public service important?

Almost all my work experience has been working with the public, or hired by the public, mostly related to the Spanish Development Cooperation. I consider that the main problem we have as a global society is how unequal is the world we are living in, and the fact that there are still people living in extreme poverty and without their basic needs covered.Nations and citizens from different countries are more inter-connected than ever, but the global governance is still weak and on an early stage of construction. Seems like considering ourselves as part of a global society is still a challenge, and a global public service is highly necessary to focus and work towards our common good. In this process, the international organizations are the key, and I cannot imagine a more valuable and meaningful contribution to my society than being part of progress.

What has the Public Service Fellows & Scholars program meant for you, personally?

The Public Service Fellows and Scholars Program is the most important opportunity I have had in my professional and academic life. I am honored to be part of this cohort and I am so thankful for this opportunity. Without it, I could not be able to fulfill my vision of being a student in SAIS. I am certain about doing my very best while I am here: studying hard, using the services that the school provides, and I will make sure that I knock on every door I want to open. Public Service Scholar Ángel Chica Sánchez stands with fellow SAIS students during student orientation.

Who has inspired and supported you in your academic journey?

I have been inspired by so many others during my journey, including mentors and colleagues at the Spanish Development Cooperation system, the World Bank, and other multilateral and bilateral agencies. As an organization, I have been impressed the most with the World Bank, the OECD and certain Departments of the European Union Development Cooperation system.The principal support I am getting is coming from my family and my close ones. I am sharing my jour- ney with them; they are a very important part of this experience.

Are you a highly talented graduate student pursuing the MAIR or an experienced mid-career professional pursuing the MIPP? Are you committed to strengthening your community or to pursuing a career shaping public policy?

Apply and learn more about SAIS’ Public Service Scholarships here »

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