Miryam Amsiliread bio
Miryam Amsili is originally from Bogota, Colombia and grew up in Miami speaking Spanish, English, Hebrew, and French. She graduated from Princeton University in 2014 with a degree in History focusing on Latin America. While at Princeton, Miryam spent a summer teaching English in Jishou, China, where she developed a deep interest in the region. Since graduation, Miryam has worked at a software company in New York City in various roles including Business Development, Business Operations, and Product Strategy. At Yenching Academy, she looks forward to concentrating on Politics and International Relations while exploring the growing tech scene and its relationship with the Chinese government and non-profits.
Jacob Bishopread bio
Jacob Bishop, an American from Washington, DC, is a 2017 graduate of the United States Military Academy at West Point. He has a Bachelor’s of Science in Chinese Language with a minor in Environmental Engineering. Throughout his studies he has focused on Chinese language, culture, and history with a particular emphasis on the military and political relationships between the United States the People’s Republic of China. At Yenching, he plans to develop deeper insights into Chinese political culture and foreign policy decision making that he will be able to utilize throughout a career of public service.
Jose Luis Burnes Garzaread bio
Jose L. Burnes Garza is a Mexican national and Dartmouth College graduate with a BA in Government (Honors). At Dartmouth, he received four competitive research grants including: the UGAR Kaminsky Family Fund Research Award, Nelson A. Rockefeller Center Honors Thesis Grant, John Sloan Dickey Center for International Understanding International Internship Grant, and the UGAR Summer Undergraduate Research Grant. He has also worked as a Research Assistant for multiple renowned Dartmouth professors, including Kyle Dropp, John Carey, and Brendan Nyhan. His main research area while in college was assessing the effectiveness of international human rights courts in changing state’s practices, which allowed him to do field work in Mexico and Guatemala. Outside of academics, he was co-founder and former president of the Latin American Student Association (LASA), and served on multiple institutional boards on a wide variety of topics including: Student Program Funding Allocation, International Engagement Programs, and Social Impact. He also worked in international business and labor policy at the Organization of American States (OAS) and Council of the Americas in Washington, D.C. As a Yenching Scholar, Jose will focus on China’s emerging role as a main international lender and how that shifts the existing paradigms of international development policy.
Megan Cansfieldread bio
Megan Cansfield is a British-American dual citizen and 2017 graduate of the University of Michigan with majors in Political Science, International Studies, and Asian Studies. At Michigan, Megan served as the Asia Regional Editor of the Michigan Journal of International Affairs and wrote her honors thesis analyzing the intersections between US-China strategic trust-building and security cooperation on North Korea. She also studied in five Chinese cities and interned with the US Embassy Beijing, US Consulate-General Guangzhou, and US-China grassroots exchange organization Project Pengyou. Megan was a Fulbright research fellow in China at Yanbian University where she conducted an independent project investigating the influence of the Korean Peninsula security crisis on US-China relations. Following her studies in Politics and International Relations at the Yenching Academy, Megan aspires to continue fostering Sino-American cooperation and engagement in East Asia at the intergovernmental level through a career in bilateral and multilateral diplomacy.
Kelsi Caywoodread bio
Kelsi Caywood, originally from Sturgis, Michigan, is a graduate of Yale University. Her studies in political science focused on international security and humanitarian affairs. She served as the President of the Yale International Relations Association, Yale’s largest undergraduate organization. Kelsi also directed the Yale Divinity School’s Life Worth Living Fellowship, researched organizational behavior at the Yale School of Management, and organized service initiatives in New Haven. Prior to Yale, Kelsi spent a year with the U.S. State Department in South Korea. Kelsi plans to build off of her experiences in international education and cross-cultural dialogue to pursue a career in peace-building and diplomacy. At the Yenching Academy, Kelsi concentrates on the Politics and International Relations research area with the aim of applying those studies to US-China relations.
José Pablo Ceballos Cantúread bio
Born and raised in Mexico City, José Pablo Ceballos Cantú is a graduate of Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México (UNAM) where he studied Chemical Engineering, graduating with Honors. His main goal is the application of technology for benefit of society. For the past 3 years, Jose has worked as an associate in a solar Silicon Valley startup based in Mexico named Bright. José also has a technical degree as an emergency medical technician from Red-Cross belonging to the emergency first responder force since 2011 and the rescue diving team since 2013. His first interest in China came on a college exchange, where he studied business and management courses at Beijing Foreign Studies University (北京外国语大学). José intends to understand in a deeper way Chinese culture to tap its human talent looking to form bridges between China and Latin America.
Michael Chenread bio
Michael grew up in Richmond, Virginia where he could not help but fall in love with history, especially the controversial aspects. That interest brought him to Wheaton College, where he studied History, Sociology, and Chinese. There, he became inspired by the possibility of enacting social change with rigorous research and conducted research on African-American families and labor markets in the post-Reconstruction period and the social function of Chinese immigrant entrepreneurs. He was a Princeton in Asia Fellow at the Linden Centre, an award-winning boutique hotel in rural Yunnan, where he explored sustainable tourism and the impact of development on local culture. Passionate about migrant workers and rural villagers in China’s evolving economy, Michael researches on social stratification and development at the Yenching Academy. He is also interested in religion’s growth and function in China as well as China’s deep culinary traditions and budding hip hop scene.
Eric Chienread bio
Originally from Indianapolis, Indiana, Eric Chien graduated from the University of Chicago in 2016 with a B.A. in Economics. While in college, Eric studied abroad for a semester at the Catholic University of Chile and participated in an intensive summer language program at Beijing Normal University. Since graduation, Eric has worked at DHL Consulting in Miami, FL, working on various corporate strategy and supply chain projects throughout the Americas region. At the Yenching Academy, Eric pursues a concentration in the Economics and Management track in order to explore the impact of Chinese investment in Latin America.
Michael Collinsread bio
Michael Collins was born and raised in the United States of America. He attended Washington University in St. Louis as an Elizabeth Grey Danforth Scholar and earned a degree in Chinese Language and Culture. His coursework centered on 20th century Chinese history with a special interest in revolutionary movements during this period. Outside of the classroom, he was engaged in sexual assault prevention education and activism. As a Dick Gephardt Civic Scholar, Michael worked as a legal researcher for the Zhicheng Public Interest Law Firm where he comparatively analyzed child protection laws across the globe. Michael is excited to continue his study of Chinese history at the Yenching Academy, hoping to one day enters academia. He also enjoys immersing himself in Beijing's vibrant art and music community.
Sonya Ruth Cottonread bio
Sonya was born in the United States of America, grew up in Cape Town, South Africa, and has also lived in Finland and China. Her previous academic background is in African languages (namely Xhosa) and linguistics. Currently she is completing a Master’s in Philosophy in Law at the University of Cape Town. In her thesis she focuses on 'silence' as a discursive technique in African legislation, with emphasis on the contradiction that arises when women in customary marriages are excluded from constitutional commitments to gender equality. Sonya's research interests include linguistic ideologies, legal pluralism and legal-anthropology - or, simply put, the intersection of language, law and culture. As a Yenching scholar, she intends to specialise in Chinese Law and Society, and to continue learning Mandarin beyond HSK level 5, which she has already attained. She aspires to engage in socio-legal research involving Sino-African migration from the perspective of individuals whose experiences are often overlooked in macro-level studies that focus on state actors and multinational corporations. Almost as much as she loves learning languages, Sonya enjoys exploring the creative manners in which people interpret and engage with legal language. She believes that applying linguistic approaches to legal subject matter represents a powerful analytic tool, as well as a mechanism for ensuring multiple voices are heard.