Human rights advocate
Maya is combining majors in political science and social work in order to prepare for a career working to protect human rights, both internationally and domestically. After she graduates, she plans to spend a year serving in a Haiti orphanage before joining a government agency that helps refugees, immigrants, migrants and orphans. At Northwestern, she has been a discipleship group leader and coordinator for the college’s Justice & Service teams. She’s also involved in student government and took part in a Spring Service Partnership trip.
In high school, my favorite class was history. I loved learning about how the different presidencies impacted the country and how our country has changed (and not changed) over time. I also had the opportunity to spend some time in Haiti working alongside impoverished and unaccompanied children. While there, I witnessed firsthand the impact government corruption has on people. I wanted to learn more about government in general and how people can work to fight the injustices that many men, women and children face in our world today.
The big (and small) picture
I love learning about international relations and the relationship between the U.S. government and those of other nations. It fascinates me to discover how a country’s government and institutions impact the working of the country as a whole. Eventually, this macro level of policy trickles down to impact the day-to-day micro level of human life.
Loving our neighbors
I often hear the debate about whether or not Christians should get involved in politics. Prior to coming to Northwestern, I would have said yes but lacked the ability to explain why. Studying political science has strengthened my faith, as it has highlighted the importance of knowing what you believe in the political realm. I think politics can be utilized as a way to love our neighbors. After witnessing the authentic struggle and pain in various countries and cultures, I want to use politics and the power of institutions to help those in need.
I’ve served in student government since my freshman year. It’s given me the opportunity to be a voice on campus. Additionally, student government brings together people with different interests and majors. Because of this, it’s a fairly accurate representation of what it looks like to serve in a political setting. I have loved getting to know different people and have enjoyed seeing the changes take place on campus.
My political science major has challenged my traditional way of thinking about the world. As a freshman, I found myself holding the same perspectives as my family and close friends. Though I don’t disagree with them, political science has given me a platform to explore, challenge and uncover why I believe what I believe—and has given me the environment to apply my beliefs.