Former Students

Ky Schardein

Ky Schardein is currently a first-year MPP candidate at the Frank Batten School of Leadership and Public Policy. Originally from Abilene, Kansas, he graduated from William Jewell College in May 2022 with degrees in Oxbridge Institutions and Policy and International Relations. His areas of interest include national security policy, foreign policy, and international relations.

Clay Vaughan

Clay Vaughan is a fourth-year from Ridgefield, Connecticut, double majoring in Leadership & Public Policy and Foreign Affairs. His areas of interest include national security and defense policy, diplomacy, and counterterrorism. He has been with the NSPC since January of 2022.

Jonas Mendes

Jonas Mendes is a fourth-year from Gainesville, VA majoring in Global Security & Justice and minoring in Public Policy & Leadership. He’s passionate about defense policy, social justice reform, and public-private partnerships. In his free time, he competes on the sailing team and loves to bake! Upon graduation, Jonas looks forward to a career creating innovative strategies and making a social impact.

Connor Eads

Connor Eads is currently a second-year Master of Public Policy candidate at the Frank Batten School of Leadership and Public Policy. After graduating from Hampden-Sydney College, he served as a Virginia Management Fellow, authoring white papers on pervasive problems in public sector management. Connor’s policy interests revolve around how the intersection of the public and private sectors have implications on national security—such as energy policy, infrastructure policy, and public-private partnerships.

Fred Manning

Fred Manning is a fourth-year from Columbia, South Carolina majoring in Foreign Affairs and minoring in History. His areas of interest include national security policy, law, development finance, and investment banking. Upon graduation Fred intends to combine his interests in national security and finance by pursuing a career in investment banking, specifically tailoring financial solutions to the aerospace and defense industry.

Sasha Frederic

Sasha Frederic is from Virginia Beach, VA, double majoring in Public Policy & Leadership and Foreign Affairs. Having lived abroad her entire life, Sasha quickly became interested in foreign policy and national security. Upon graduation from the Frank Batten School, she hopes to become a foreign service officer for the State Department or work for the intelligence community.

Esther Eriksson von Allmen

Esther Eriksson von Allmen is a rising fourth-year student from Washington DC majoring in Political Philosophy, Policy, & Law and English. As a student journalist, she has written for The Nation, The Intercept, and The American Prospect, covering a broad array of topics including policing, abortion rights, and climate change. She’s excited to shift focus towards international affairs this summer with the NSPC!

Cole DeLong

Cole DeLong is a fourth-year from Cape Coral, Fl, double majoring in Public Policy and Leadership and Government. His areas of interest include national security policy, fiscal policy, energy policy, and health care policy. Upon graduation he plans to pursue a career engaging his policy interests.

Ella Berg

Isabella (Ella) Berg is a public policy major and economics minor who is passionate about global development and industrial organization. Her interest in public-private partnerships inspired her to pursue a career in national security. After graduation, Ella plans to work in the public sector or become a consultant for defense clients.

Stella Connaughton

Stella Connaughton is a fourth-year double majoring in Public Policy and Leadership and History. She is interested in urban planning policy and foreign policy and hopes to work in the public sector or attend law school after graduation.

Hallie Griffiths

Hallie Griffiths holds a B.A. in Foreign Affairs and Spanish from UVA and is currently pursuing an MPP at the Frank Batten School of Leadership and Public Policy. She is interested in international relations and the role of non-state actors in international politics.

Kevin Heaney

Kevin Heaney is a graduate of St. John’s University. He formerly served at New Jersey’s Office of Homeland Security and Preparedness, developing online courses, teaching and coordinating response exercises on active shooters, election security, counterterrorism, and cybersecurity. His research interest include national security, foreign policy, science/tech policy, and voting rights.

Paulina Keim

Paulina Keim is a first-year MPP student from Tampa, Florida. Last summer, she interned at the NSPC and conducted research on the U.S. Space Force and worked for their social media team. Additionally, she is the President of the International Relations Organization and competes with UVA’s Model UN team.

Michael Kerns

Michael Kerns is a fourth year undergraduate student from Alexandria, Virginia. He is double majoring in Public Policy and Leadership and History, as well as minoring in Latin American Studies and Environmental Science. His areas of interest include cybersecurity, environmental policy, and international relations.

Joseph Kratz

Joseph Kratz is a second-year from Falls Church, Virginia, studying foreign affairs and economics. He competes on the Model UN and sailing teams, and is involved in Greek life. His research interests include conflict prevention, developmental economics, and human rights protection. After graduation, Joseph wants to join the Foreign Service.

Estelle McKinney

Estelle is a second-year MPP student. Her areas of study include addressing humanitarian crises and human security issues. Prior to UVA, Estelle obtained her Bachelor’s in International Studies with a concentration in Latin America at Baylor. Upon graduation, Estelle hopes to join the Foreign Service or work for an NGO.

Jackie Modesett

Originally from Texas, Jackie graduated from Harvard in 2017 and is a first year dual-degree MBA/MPP candidate at UVA’s Darden School of Business and Frank Batten School of Leadership and Public Policy. Jackie’s career focus has been in defense policy, including work for the Senate Armed Services Committee and political campaigns.

John (JC) Sipher

John (JC) Sipher is from Reston, Virginia. He is majoring in history and foreign affairs at UVA. He became interested in international relations and national security while growing up overseas in an expat family. After graduation, John hopes to pursue a career in the Foreign Service.




Matty Stanley

Matty Stanley is from Buena Vista, Virginia, and is interested in diplomacy and security cooperation. She enjoys researching alliances and other international relationships, as well as the effects of climate change on these relationships and global security conditions. Upon graduation, she hopes to pursue a career in international relations.

Caleb Tisdale

Caleb Tisdale is a second year MPP student at the Frank Batten School of Leadership and Public Policy. He is originally from Martinsville, Virginia and is interested in nuclear non-proliferation and climate policy. Upon graduation, Caleb intends to pursue a career on Capitol Hill or in the Foreign Service.

Alice Valioulis

Alice Valioulis is a rising fourth-year from Thessaloniki, Greece double majoring in Foreign Affairs and Public Policy and Leadership. She is strongly interested in national security issues in Asia and Europe. In the future, Alice hopes to work as a policy analyst in a think tank.