Hayley Madigan is the Marketing, Communications, and Media Assistant for CTWAC for the 2018 summer. She was born in South Korea, raised in West Hartford, CT, and is now a full-time student at Syracuse University where she just completed her second year and is excited for what the second half of her college career has to offer.
1. When and why did you first show interest in global affairs?
As a junior in high school, I took a course on human rights with my academic advisor. She exposed me to a variety of historical and current human rights violations that, up until that point in my life, I had no knowledge about. I realized that there were many awful, dangerous, and intriguing cases that I wanted to learn more about. Therefore, I decided to major in International Relations at Syracuse University to learn more about these global issues and open my mind up to the world.
2. Do you have a particular area of interest within global affairs?
Academically, the topic concentration for my major is International Law and Organizations (ILO), while the geographic concentration is Africa. I chose ILO because it encompasses human rights, which is my primary passion regarding global affairs. I concentrate on Africa as well because of its rich culture and history, which has ultimately shaped the continent’s identity in unique ways. The lack of understanding by Westerners and the tendency for non-Africans to view the continent through a single lens has caused significant misunderstandings that I’ve learned to understand in a much different ways. Hopefully in the future I will be able to combine my interests so that I can focus on a wide range of global affairs.
Hayley with the Watkinson Dominican Republic service team in front of a home they helped construct
3. What do you do at CTWAC?
I am the Marketing, Communications, and Media Assistant as CTWAC. My duties include understanding and working with our social media sites so that we can shape them to maximize our success as an organization. I am also in charge of managing CTWAC’s press coverage and event outreach to help the organization get the best possible coverage for the amazing work we do here! It’s a great opportunity to combine media skills and international relations into one job opportunity.
4. What do you do in your free time?
In my free time, I enjoy spending time with friends and family. Thanks to the crazy path of life, I have ended up with friends and family that enjoy having meaningful conversations about love, relationships, politics, race, the environment, and everything in between! Those conversations are my favorite things to do because they allow us to share ideas, become closer, and support one another. I’m also a Netflix addict, so I spend too much time binge-watching shows and movies to entertain me. My current favorite is the Disney movie Coco, that has successfully made me cry every time I’ve watched it.
5. Why do you think that global engagement is important?
We do not live in a world where countries are completely separated from one another, and we haven’t for centuries. Globalization only continues to expand, so international engagement is necessary based on the way that we, as a global community, have progressed. While globalization has undoubtedly brought negative aspects to the world, it evolved into a process where ideas, inventions, commodities, and more could be shared amongst international players. We must be aware of international affairs to educate ourselves, others, and eventually make change in this world for a better future.
6. Do you have any tips on how to get involved in global affairs?
Download Twitter! Twitter is a site of constant communication between active users and if you follow the right people, you will see fresh news stories each day along with the opinions of real people. Since this is a social media site, you must be sure not to believe everything you see and not base your opinions off a headline or just one person’s tweet. If you see something that interests you, Google it and discover more because I’m sure the issue is much more complex than a 140-character tweet. If you have an iPhone, I would also recommend turning on the notifications for the Apple News app as it compiles various stories from a wide range of news outlets and provides updates throughout the day.