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Student Achievements 



Deba Masterson and Morgan Shepherd Highlighted on KSL News at 10

If you were watching the news on Friday, April 7, you would have seen Deba Masterson and Morgan Shepherd participate a live-streamed counterterrorism simulation featuring their decision process regarding how to combat a terrorists who hijacked a plane bound for Atlanta, Georgia. Read and watch the news article here.

April 2017

ABC4 Utah News Features Chelsea Winslow and Caleb Larkin

MIAGE students again made the news as ABC4 Utah featured Chelsea Winslow talking about her experience as a member of the Simulation Design Team for a counterterrorism simulation on April 7. Caleb Larkin was also shown on ABC4 Utah participating in team decision making for the simulation. Read and watch the news article here.

April 2017

UN LogoDeseret News features MIAGE student Milo Zhang

Milo Zhang could hardly contain his excitement about the United Nations bringing an international conference to Utah next year. "I want to be as involved as I can," said Zhang, one of about 100 people gathered Saturday at Utah Valley University for an event intended to promote the U.N. non-governmental organization conference being held in Salt Lake City. You can read the article here.

November, 2018

MIAGE Students Participate in Counterterrorism Simulation

With terrorist attacks tragically occurring across the world on a daily basis, it is imperative for leaders to establish prevention mechanisms and prepare processes for responding quickly to threats and attacks. MIAGE students who participate in the Perspectives of Counter-Terrorism class have the opportunity to receive this type of training and experience while participating in four mini simulations and one live-broadcasted final simulation. Students study legal, geopolitical and policy-related aspects of terrorism to prepare them for the simulations. In the simulations, they are required to demonstrate skills such as articulation, reasoning, teamwork, and information management. The final simulation for the class this semester was four hours long and included terrorist events such as a hijacked plane, cyber-attacks and a university protest shooting.

MIAGE student, Caleb Larkin, shared his experience, “The simulations are a good test of how real events play out in a high stress environment. Often we have to make decisions that are impossible to perceive the consequences, but we learned to take more, if not all, perspectives into account and weight the cost and benefits of each decision or indecision. The course certainly helped me to see the complexities of counterterrorism as well as the required skills to pursue a career in counterterrorism."

Another MIAGE student, Morgan Shepherd, explained one of the major benefits of this class, “in this class you are given the opportunity to receive constructive feedback while learning to manage large amounts of data, speak publicly and professionally, deal with stress, and make very difficult decisions in a safe environment." 

During the Spring 2017 semester, MIAGE students Caleb Larkin, Chelsea Joliet, Deba Masterson, Mike Young, Morgan Shepherd and Tyson Todd, all completed the rigorous live-streamed counterterrorism simulation. Another MIAGE student, Chelsea Winslow, was a member of the Simulation Design Team and therefore helped design the semester student experience and final simulation. Congratulations to all of them for their hard work and participation! 

Watch each team's final simulation and congressional hearing here.

 April 2017

Chelsea Winslow Featured on Humans of the U

Congratulations to Chelsea Winslow! Every week the University of Utah features an exceptional student at the university. Chelsea Winslow was featured on Humans of the U for her amazing story of being the first in her immediate family to receive a master's degree as well as her work as a police officer while in school. Read Chelsea's feature here. (Photo Credit: University of Utah)

March 2017

Ashkan Azmak Featured in Student Innovation @ the U Magazine

Congratulations to Ashkan Azmak! Ashkan was featured in the University of Utah magazine, Student Innovation @ the U for his involvement in a project to help improve marketplace conditions for refugee camps. The magazine only publishes one issue per year and features a handful of students across campus who have used innovation to help improve and impact the world. Check out Ashkan's feature here. (Photo Credit: University of Utah)

March 2017

Andrea Soleta Featured in LDS Newsroom - PhilippinesAndrea Soleta Miss United Nations

Congratulations to Andrea Soleta! The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints Newsroom - Philippines featured Andrea for her accomplishments at the University of Utah, including receiving five scholarships and awards as well as completing a fundraiser for Typhoon Haiyan victims during her undergraduate degree at BYU. Read Andrea's featured article here.

 March 2017

Deba Masterson Meets Kenyan Ambassador to the UN, Macharia Kamau

For her internship this semester with Utah Consular Corps, Deba has had the opportunity to meet and work with foreign dignitaries both appointed to and visiting Utah. Deba and Emily Estheimer, another MIAGE student, met the President of the Utah Consular Corps at a conference last semester and both applied for and received internships for this semester. Never underestimate the power of attending events and networking!

March 2017 

Andrea Soleta Returns from Internship with the British Parliament

One of our talented MIAGE students, Andrea Soleta, from the Philippines just returned from London doing an internship for the British Parliament. Andrea shares that it has been very interesting to learn the difference between US and British politics. Additionally, Andrea has received The Abrelia C. Hinckley Graduate Scholarship 2016 for her significant experience in community involvement and commitment to a career in public service. We will post more about her internship soon, so stay tuned! In the meantime, check out the amazing internships available to MIAGE students through the Hinckley Institute.

January 2017


Aaron Butler Scores Job with Goldman Sachs via LinkedIn

Congratulations to Aaron Butler! Aaron graduates from the MIAGE program in December and was just hired on at Goldman Sachs in the Global Compliance division as an operations analyst. As an operations analyst, Aaron will be helping ensure businesses meet regulatory requirements of compliance and manage their financial market risk. Previous to this position, Aaron worked at the Law Office of Richard B Frandsen as a legal assistant. While at that position Aaron’s supervisor helped him ramp up his LinkedIn profile, which Goldman Sachs then used to recruit him. Goldman Sachs is a prestigious company to work for and wins multiple international awards yearly. During 2016 some of their awards have been: Ranked #74 among Fortune 500 companies, Best Investment Bank in China, Best Financing in North America, and Best Financing in Western Europe. Never underestimate the power of having a professional and complete LinkedIn profile. Check out Aaron's LinkedIn profile here.

October 2016  

Reece Tyler Becomes Director of Collaborations for Africa Business Portal

Congratulations, Reece Tyler! Reece started an internship this semester as the Director of Collaborations for Africa Business Portal. Africa Business Portal helps companies in the U.S. build a strong professional network in Africa for doing business. Reece is responsible for finding organizations and individuals whose goals align with Africa Business Portal and then approaching them to arrange partnerships. He is excited for the opportunity to digitally rub elbows with leaders of international organizations. Reece has always wanted to work in Africa, and in addition to this incredible internship he is also actively working towards taking the FSOT test in February.

 October 2016


Esther Trueman Interprets for Former U.S. Ambassador to China, Jon Huntsman Jr., and UofU President, David W. Pershing

As part of the office of Global Engagement, Esther Trueman has had the opportunity to help with the first-ever training for Chinese coaches at the University of Utah. The training has given the opportunity for 89 of the top athletic coaches in China to come and learn from University of Utah coaches and teams for three months. Esther, who is fluent in Mandarin, has been deeply involved in the welcoming and cultural experience for these coaches. Esther even had the opportunity to interpret in Mandarin for UofU President, David W. Pershing, and former U.S. Ambassador to China, Jon Huntsman Jr., as they addressed the coaches in a special welcome session. Read more here. (Photo Credit: University of Utah)

September 2016

Dylan Woodrow Interns in Dublin

dylan dublin

Second year student Dylan Woodrow is interning this summer in the Emerald Isle. Here's what he has to say: 

"Currently I'm working in the Dublin fundraising department at Camara Education. Camara is a US-based non-profit that uses technology to enhance education in developing communities throughout the world. I help our small company out with several important tasks including database management, prospect research, and conference attendance. Camara is not a large company, but our development department here is very busy all the time. We're continually exploring potential prospects for donations of computers (for our mission), money, or even corporate volunteers. It's really fascinating to see how things work in a smaller non-profit like this, and I'm learning a lot."

Keep up the good work, Dylan!

June 2016

 MIAGE Students Participate in Counterterrorism Simulation 

This semester, four MIAGE students participated in the law school's annual Counter Terrorism Simulation. This high-stress replication of real world terrorism events tests students' ability to make group decisions, deliver press conferences on sensitive information, and act as leaders in crisis situations. Jordan Greene, Erin Moore, Josh Payne, and Dylan Woodrow represented MIAGE as participants, and second-year student Amelia Oakes participated on the team that designed the simulation. 

chelsey"The simulation was so cool," said second year student Jordan Greene. " We spend so much time studying public policy, politics, and economic, and this course showed us the practical applications of these fields in the real world."

In the Global Perspectives on Counter Terrorism Course (LAW 7789), students build skills throughout the semester in "mini simulations." "Some of the mini-simulations were very stressful," remembers Greene, "but in the final simulation I wasn't all that stressed because we'd been learning to meet these expectations throughout the course." 

Greene said he now has a better understanding of the challenges faced by national leaders. "You can see how mistake could be made. They face such intense time pressure, and they always lack accurate and complete information. In these situations, decision making becomes very difficult."

Media coverage of the simulation

April 2016

g4h     erin  
Erin Moore Wins Games4Health Competition

Second year MIAGE student Erin Moore took first place in the U's Games4Health competition, hosted by the Business School's Sorenson Center for Discovery and Innovation. Erin and her team designed a video game to help children with diabetes learn the carbohydrate content of food. Their business idea won the competition's Chronic Disease category and a $5,000 prize. Congratulations, Erin! 

March 2016

Neco GermanyNecolina Hubner Reports on Her Internship with US European Command in Germany 

I'm working with US European Command in the InterAgency Partnering Directorate. I work with USAID and the military on implementing Executive Order 13595/ UNSCR 1325 Women Peace and Security. My day to day work involves meeting with desk officers and commanders to inform them on the program and ways we are trying to incorporate it into military instruction. In other words, we are educating the military on ways that they can include gender perspectives both within the US military structure as well as their relations with foreign militaries in the European Areas of responsibilities. When I'm not in meetings, I provide technical support in incorporating gender inclusive language in official documents. I'm also in charge of heading the public information campaign to get the word out on the program and its relevance in the different units. This work has been a little unexpected, but highly rewarding. I'm learning military language and how to successfully work within a bureaucracy. I've been lucky enough to have some outstanding mentors that have provided me with great opportunities to really get involved. 

Neco is in her fourth semester of the MIAGE program. She grew up in the Air Force and speaks English, German, and Japanese. When she graduates in the fall, she plans to work in refugee program development.

February 2016

Sam Albornoz Scores with Inside Coach

Sam albornozFourth semester MIAGE student Sam Albornoz has always loved soccer, and he is literally changing the game with Inside Coach. As co-founder and business developer, Sam is helping Inside Coach build and sell the world's "smartest soccer ball trainer." Their innovative ball design has built-in technology to monitor multiple variables of play. Players track their progress from a mobile app and receive real-time coaching tips to improve their skills.

In addition to his marketing work, Sam has been working with American and English developers to design the wireframe and build the application to which the the soccer ball's data is transmitted. He's also collaborated with Inside Coach's engineer to create timelines for the development of the hardware going inside the soccer ball. Additionally, Sam has been a crucial part of finding sourcing for the product overseas. soccer

Inside Coach launched a successful Kickstarter campaign earlier this year which raised over $32,000. This will help them market the product and obtain additional funding to further develop the equipment.

Watch the Kickstarter video to learn more about the product and how you can support Sam and Inside Coach. Congratulations Sam, and best of luck!

Media Coverage:,,, Fox13

March 2016

 andrea conference

Andrea Soleta Presents at Conference on the Muslim World

First semester MIAGE student Andrea Soleta traveled to Manila last fall to present at the fourth annual Conference on the Muslim World. Andrea has worked as a senior researcher for AidData, a research lab that analyzes international development funding to maximize outcomes. Andrea delivered a very well-received presentation on AidData's geocoding of international aid. Congratulations, Andrea!

October 2015

jordan spain

Jordan Greene Interns with US Embassy in Madrid Spain

Third semester student Jordan Greene is spending his semester in Spain as an intern with the US Department of Commerce. He is working with the US Commercial Service of the American Embassy in Madrid assisting trade specialists in promoting US business interests in Spain. His duties include matchmaking services, due diligence reports, market research, advocacy, and commercial diplomacy. Best of luck, Jordan!

Fall 2015; Photo courtesy Aubrey Greene

dylan FLAS

Dylan Woodrow Receives Scholarship for Arabic Studies

Fourth Semester student Dylan Woodrow has received a very prestigious scholarship known as "FLAS," or "Foreign Language Area Scholarship," for studying Arabic while at the University of Utah. Dylan is the third MIAGE student to receive a this impressive accolade which awards students studying less-commonly spoken languages. Though Dylan is already fluent in Mandarin Chinese, he decided to add Arabic to his repertoire to make himself a more marketable and globally-minded individual.
          "The FLAS requirements are great for encouraging me to learn more about the culture and people of the Arabic-speaking world," Dylan said. "Considering my interest in the Foreign, the knowledge is extremely useful and applicable. And the stipend and tuition benefit are a huge weight off my shoulders!" 

Visit this link for information on applying for FLAS.

Fall 2015


MIAGE students take courses in international law, business, public administration, and various social sciences. Most students complete in-depth research and writing projects in these courses, and several have had success publishing those pieces in various forums. Here is a partial list of those publications:

Tristan Abbott, Alumnus: "China's Minor(ity) Problem." Published March 2015 in International Affairs Forum

Tristan Abbott, Alumnus: "Review - The End of Power." Published 7 March 2015 in E-International Relations.

Casey Coombs, Alumnus: "Stuck in Yemen: A Personal History." Published 4 May 2015 in The Intercept. Casey is a widely-published freelance journalist. You can find links to more of his work on his personal blog,

Anna Fletcher: "Human Trafficking in the Global Supply Chain." Published 14 April 2014 in the Sigma Iota Rho Journal of International Relations

Kirk Galster, Alumnus: "Poverty and Conflict: Can Economic Development Prevent Conflict?" Journal of Interdisciplinary Conflict Science 1(1).

Jordan Greene: "Empowering the Poor to Eliminate Poverty." Winner of the 2015 Georgetown University Global Futures Essay Contest.   

Robert Higgins, Alumnus: "Multinational Enterprise Expansion: Considering Corruption."  Published May 2012 in G8 Business.

Robert Higgins, Alumnus:"Information Communications Technology and Innovation: More Than Technology and Patents."  Published June 2012 in G20 - B20 Summit.

William Merkle: "Japan's New Geopolitics." Published 13 Aug 2015 in The National Interest

William Merkle: "Corruption and Income Disparity Plague Investors in China." Published 26 February 2015 in the Sigma Iota Rho Journal of International Relations.

Last Updated: 11/12/18