Award Recipients


Katie Braggins, SSH’16, international affairs major, economics and global social entrepreneurship minors
Academic excellence and engagement with the world are the hallmarks of Katie’s scholastic career. She has held research positions in the Northeastern University Honors Program and in the Kostas Research Institute for Homeland Security, where she learned about emergency preparedness for natural and manmade disasters by analyzing governmental reports and evacuation plans. During two co-ops with NGOs in Buenos Aires, she addressed the effects of the “Dirty War” in Argentina. Closer to home, Katie worked with the Strong Women Strong Girls program teaching leadership and empowerment skills to third-, fourth-, and fifth-grade girls in Boston’s public schools. She is an ambassador for the Honors Program and a member of and a choreographer for the No Limits Dance Crew student group. 

Christie Civetta, SSH’15, human services major, Chinese minor
On a co-op in Zambia, Christie discovered that community outreach and awareness of drug use and abuse was lacking in a particular township, and she organized and facilitated a new outreach program that has since been fully implemented and successful. Her dedication to suicide prevention led her to study abroad in China, where she researched suicide in a different cultural context. Christie’s efforts have been recognized with the Karen T. Rigg Shining Torch Scholarship, awarded to an exemplary student leader. She will work toward a doctorate in social welfare at the University of Bristol in England and hopes to found an international organization that will put the results of her research into practice.

Sam Manning, SSH’15, international affairs major social entrepreneurship minor
This fall, Sam plan  to enroll in a master’s program in international and development economics and then work toward a doctorate leading to a career as an international field researcher on projects throughout the developing world. To that end, he studied in Kenya, Chile, and South Africa; taught high school classes in the Himalayas; and worked for the International Center for Journalists in Washington, D.C. Sam was selected as one of the Huntington 100 and volunteered with Big Brothers Big Sisters and Rosie’s Place. In addition to his co-op responsibilities in the Philippines Sam volunteered to assist with relief efforts in Tacloban City following a destructive typhoon.

Marco Muzio, SSH’15, physics and mathematics major
Marco received a Presidential Global Scholarship from Northeastern to support his work as a research assistant at CERN, home to the largest particle physics laboratory in the world. In addition to his physics prowess, he was lauded for his ability to work seamlessly among experts from diverse cultures. Working at CERN reaffirmed his goal to become a physics professor at a research university in an international setting. In spring 2014, Marco was an undergraduate teaching fellow in the Physics Department. He assisted faculty research and was able to pursue his own research through the Physics Department Research Co-op Fellowship.


Erin Cooney, BHS’14, global health major. International co-ops at GEMS Wellington Academy Silicon Oasis in Dubai and at Northeastern College of Professional Studies/Swinburne University in Melbourne.
The first Northeastern student to graduate with a global health major, Erin has used her experiential learning opportunities to gain insight into how to improve health worldwide. Through Dialogue of Civilizations programs in Spain and South Africa, she studied healthcare management and international medicine. Erin’s recent work as a learning support specialist and health education consultant at GEMS Wellington Academy Silicon Oasis in Dubai allowed her to delve into culturally sensitive health education. Erin has traveled to four continents to study, work, conduct research, and participate in service learning. Following graduation, Erin plans to return to Dubai, where she will study health in a cultural context before pursuing a doctorate in international public health.

Zuren Tai Zhang, E’14, industrial engineering major, business minor. International co-ops at Faithful+Gould in Singapore, at Verny S.A. and Ying Yu Ltd. in Shanghai, and at Divalek S.A. in Montevideo, Uruguay.
With his academic excellence, fluency in four languages, and multiple international work experiences, Zuren has positioned himself to become a global business leader and thinker. At his various co-ops and internships, he has assisted in consulting and construction projects and provided translation and liaison services for the import/export industry. He worked with maritime agents at the port of Montevideo. His passion for engineering and business shines in his capstone project, where, in conjunction with his former employer NxStage Medical Inc., he defined and designed a cost-effective process to make NxStage’s home hemodialysis machines operate more efficiently.


Miguel de Corral, SSH’13, international affairs major; Arabic, political science, and history minors. International co-ops in Rome at the NATO Defense College, and in Geneva at the Geneva Forum.
With four Dialogues of Civilizations, two international co-ops, and two international field-research projects, Miguel’s undergraduate experience has spanned 16 countries, truly embodying the university’s spirit of global exploration. His studies fostered his passion for diplomacy and humanitarian action, and his co-ops enabled him to delve into security and disarmament research at two prestigious international organizations. A prolific scholar, he has been published twice in an independent European policy journal. Miguel has his sights set on earning master’s and doctorate degrees in the field of international relations, and pursuing a career as a diplomat for NATO or the European Union.

Caitlin Ferguson, AMD’13, communication studies major, global social entrepreneurship minor. International co-op in Hubli, India, with the Deshpande Foundation.
Caitlin used her experiential opportunities at Northeastern to launch her effort to help alleviate global poverty through
entrepreneurship. Co-ops with social innovation nonprofits Root Cause, in Boston, and the Deshpande Foundation, in India, as well as a Social Enterprise Institute field study, in Cape Town, South Africa, allowed her to lift up young entrepreneurs through hands-on business mentoring and service projects. She further sharpened her global skillset by becoming conversant in the Hindi language while studying abroad in Jaipur, India, under a full U.S. Department of State scholarship. Caitlin has applied for fellowships in India, and intends to continue to work in the developing
world before pursuing a master’s degree in social enterprise or international development.


Sarah Hodsdon, SSH’12, international affairs major, global social entrepreneurship and Chinese minors. International co-op in Dhaka, Bangladesh, with Grameen Bank.

Megan Kassick, S’12, biology major, sociology minor. International co-op in Navi Mumbai, India, at the Tata Memorial Centre’s Advanced Centre for Treatment, Research, and Education in Cancer.


Kaitlin Ostrander, BHS'11, health sciences. International co-op in Chigamba Village; Malawi, Africa; at the Little Field Home Orphanage

Sarah Tishler, SSH'11, international affairs, psychology, and French. International co-op in Geneva, Switzerland, at the Geneva Centre for security policy