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Sofia Ferigolliread bio
Sofia Ferigolli is an Italian student, born in Trento, who is completing a double-binational degree in International Relations between France (at Sciences Po Bordeaux) and Italy (at the Università degli Studi of Torino). Sofia has been enrolled in an English speaking master’s program in Bordeaux, which has no equivalent in France outside Paris, and which includes a semester at the Middlebury Institute of International Studies, in Monterey, California. However, she deferred completion of this degree in order to study for a Master’s at the Yenching Academy of Peking University. Sofia holds an Italian Bachelor’s degree in International Relations. In 2015, she presented a thesis regarding the International Dimension of Sport Practice, which focused on the process of rapprochement between China and the USA under the name of ping-pong diplomacy. The Franco-Italian program she is pursuing will provide her with four degrees: two Italian and two French. As she is focused on the field of diplomacy and international cooperation, she would like to pursue her studies at the Yenching Academy in the field of politics and international relations. Thus, her intention is to further investigate China’s public and foreign policy, which she has only slightly touched upon during her four previous years at university.
José Izquierdo Fernándezread bio
José Izquierdo Fernández graduated from the University of Granada (Spain) where he studied political science and public administration. While studying politics, he felt increasingly interested in legal studies, and decided to pursue a bachelor’s degree in law. In 2012 he was granted the Erasmus Scholarship to study European Union law and private international law at Yeditepe University (Istanbul, Turkey). The following academic year, thanks to the sponsorship of his home university, he went to the University of Toronto where he focused on political theory and the history of economic thought. He graduated from his bachelor’s in political science in 2014, receiving the “Award for Excellence in International Mobility”. After graduation he continued his legal studies with a focus in cross-border litigation, interning at the AGM–Paris law boutique. In the winter semester of 2015 he received the IES Abroad Scholarship to study Chinese language at Beijing Foreign Studies University, where he also worked as a data analyst for the technological start-up Flint App. Following this experience he accepted an admission offer from the Chinese Scholarship Council and moved to Shanghai in order to continue his studies of Chinese language and law at East China University of Political Science and Law. After graduating in law at the University of Granada in June 2016 he hopes to specialize in the Chinese market from a legal perspective. His ambition is to contribute to strengthening the economic ties between Europe and China, by facilitating the entry of small and medium-sized businesses into the large and complex markets of China. That is why, while at the Yenching Academy, he intends to deepen his knowledge on the Chinese legal framework, China’s regulatory environment, and its significance for foreign businesses, with a particular focus on Spanish and European companies.
Danit Galread bio
Danit Gal graduated with a BA magna cum laude in Government from IDC Herzliya, Israel, where she was a Ragonis Foundation Scholar, Argov Fellow, and MENA Leaders for Change Fellow. Danit also holds an M.Sc. in the Social Science of the Internet from the University of Oxford, where she focused on socio-technical aspects of cybersecurity.While at Oxford, she co-authored a UNESCO study on countering online hate speech and organized the annual Peking-Oxford-Stanford Internet Law and Policy Conference. Passionate about science, technology, and society, Danit will explore the diffusion of technological innovation in a hyper-connected China at the Yenching Academy.
Alexandra Grayread bio
Alexandra Gray is from New Jersey, USA, and is a graduate of Stanford University. She majored in Political Science with a primary concentration in Comparative Government, and minored in Chinese and Creative Writing. Her study abroad experiences in China through the U.S. State Department’s National Security Language Initiative for Youth (NSLI-Y) in high school and Stanford’s Beijing program in Fall 2014, as well as her coursework on Chinese politics and culture, solidified her interest in Mandarin and China’s development as a nation through both international and domestic lenses. Having served as a Campus Ambassador at Stanford for the non-profit Teach for China and as a summer intern on the Asia Team of the international NGO Internews in 2015, she is particularly interested in how government or actors in civil society may address issues of social inequity. At Yenching Academy, she is pursuing the Law and Society track.
John “Jake” Grefenstetteread bio
John “Jake” Grefenstette was the president of his class, a Hesburgh-Yusko merit scholar, and a Dean’s Fellow in the Glynn Family Honors Program at the University of Notre Dame. Jake spent his junior year as a visiting student at the University of Oxford before returning to graduate Phi Beta Kappa with a B.A. in Theology from Notre Dame. Jake received grants for each of his undergraduate summers to teach English in Chimbote, Peru; study Rinzai Zen Buddhism in Kyoto, Japan; and conduct research for his honors thesis in Cambridge, MA. In the Philosophy and Religion concentration at the Yenching Academy, Jake intends to study the influence of Daoism on Chinese poetry and explore different methodologies in religious studies. Outside of his discipline, Jake is interested in jazz piano, world cinema, and Pittsburgh sports teams.
Agustin Griziaread bio
Agustin Grizia received his Bachelor in International Relations degree at Universidad del Salvador. He is twenty-two years old and is passionate about Chinese history, politics and international relations. Since his studies have been specially focused on East Asia, this last year he started working in a research group about Asia in the Social Sciences Research Institute (IDICSO). As a member of the second cohort of the Yenching Academy of Peking University, Agustin will learn about China and its role in international politics in preparation for a career in the Diplomatic Service of Argentina.
Claire Grodenread bio
Claire Groden studied government and Asian studies at Dartmouth College, graduating magna cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa. She was awarded the Mecklin Prize for best student writing in narrative non-fiction. Groden has worked for The Wall Street Journal, The New Republic, and Fortune in New York, writing primarily about business and politics. At the Yenching Academy, Groden will focus on China's recent economic development.
Laura Grunbergread bio
Laura Grunberg holds a German passport but has a very mixed background and has lived in the UK and Switzerland. She attended school in boThøgermany and Switzerland before gaining a scholarship for boarding school in the UK, and sutdied Human, Social and Political Sciences with Management at the University of Cambridge’s Judge Business School. Laura’s interests range from public policy to business innovation and social anthropology. At Cambridge, she was actively involved in organizing seminars and conferences as President of the UK’s leading student think tank, but she has also worked for large corporations such as CHANEL. Having always had a passion for China, she has been studying Mandarin and going to China since the age of 16, in addition to following courses on the anthropology of Inner Asia during her studies. At Yenching she is following the Economics and Management concentration, and would like to further explore the topics of Innovation and Creativity within the Chinese business environment.
Gabrielle de Haanread bio
Gabrielle de Haan is an East Asian Languages and Cultures major and John Jay Scholar at Columbia University in New York (Columbia College ’16). Born in France to a French mother and an American father, she grew up in France, England, and Italy, where she attended a traditional Liceo Classico and studied Latin and Classical Greek. The addition of Mandarin to her linguistic studies soon led her to the belief that understanding China and its history, culture and place in the world was a challenge that she had to pursue. Gabrielle also has a keen interest in contemporary art and has worked at various galleries and arts institutions such as Christie's, Gagosian Gallery, and the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum. As a Yenching Scholar, she is studying Chinese Literature and Culture, and she plans to further her knowledge of contemporary Chinese art, and specifically, how these fields will ultimately enhance mutual understanding between China and the West.
Sam Hallread bio
Sam Hall is an Australian who graduated from the University of Sydney with majors in Chinese Studies, Economics, and Quantitative Analytics. During and following the completion of his undergraduate degree, Sam lived, worked, travelled and studied in various locations across China. Above all, however, it is language and literature that are his most abiding passions. At the Yenching Academy, Sam has intensively studied post-socialist Chinese fiction and Chinese literary theory. In the future, Sam hopes to pursue doctoral studies in Chinese literature and continue to explore the ways in which Chinese literature, theory, and history are entangled.