Former Students

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.

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.