Biographical Profiles of Current MPA Graduate Students
Baneen is an incoming MPA student at SPIA. Before pursuing graduate education, she worked at McKinsey & Company as an integrative consultant. She has worked on strategy and implementation engagements with clients across Pakistan and the Middle East with projects focused on the public sector. Specific to her women-centric ambitions, she has worked on introducing digital wallets to replace in-cash transfers to increase financial inclusion for 12 million women. She also helped design a national commodity subsidy program for 20 million households. Baneen now seeks to get more exposure to evidence-based policy design and an advanced statistical analysis toolkit to eventually help her work towards socio-economic development. Previously, she graduated from Lahore University of Management Sciences in Pakistan with a bachelor's degree in economics and a minor in mathematics. Baneen is an extrovert and is always on the look-out to meet new people. If you ever need a smiling face to talk to, she shall be your go-to-person!
Amana is an Eritrean-American from Alexandria, Virginia. After completing coursework exploring issues around security, sustainability, and development at Bryn Mawr College and the London School of Economics and Political Science, she received her B.A. in international studies in 2019 and completed a two-year fellowship at the Science and Technology Policy Institute (STPI). As a Science Policy Fellow at STPI, she worked with research staff to support the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy and other federal science agencies on a number of policy initiatives focused on improving international partnerships in space, environmental conservation, research and development infrastructure, and public health. After her fellowship, Amana joined the National Science Foundation (NSF) as a science assistant in the Office of the Chief of Research Security Strategy and Policy. At NSF, she worked on a range of research security and integrity issues, gaining insight into the process of sustaining an open and principled international research environment. At Princeton and upon graduating, Amana hopes to broaden her ability to analyze and address challenges that exist in the area where science and global affairs overlap. In her free time, she enjoys writing fiction and illustrating, loudly cheering on the Philadelphia Eagles, and catching up on pop culture and news podcasts.
Born in northern Nigeria and raised in Southern California, Funke’s immigrant experience ignited her dedication to public service and commitment to forging a more equitable world. Before Princeton, she worked for the U.S. Agency for International Development, supporting programs to reduce hunger, malnutrition and poverty globally. Prior to that, she worked in research and advocacy to advance racial, gender and economic equity as a policy analyst with the Georgetown Center on Poverty and Inequality, and as a Bill Emerson National Hunger Fellow with the Congressional Hunger Center. After Princeton, Funke aims to help develop evidence-based and equitable policies to combat poverty and promote inclusive economic development in Africa and globally. Funke is a member and volunteer with the Sadie Collective, an organization dedicated to empowering Black women and girls in economics and related fields. She is a dance and podcast enthusiast.
Rahmat is a career diplomat with the Bangladesh Foreign Service, experienced in dealing with bilateral and multilateral diplomacy as well as administration. During his service, he has received foundation and diplomatic trainings in Bangladesh, India, Turkey, the Netherlands and Belgium. Rahmat obtained his bachelor's and master's degrees in microbiology from the University of Dhaka, with highest grade points in both. For his academic excellence, he received a Prime Minister Gold Medal, Dean's Award and Outstanding Academic Performance Awards. He has four years of research experience in the field of virology and has nine international scientific publications in renowned international journals including Vaccine (Elsevier), Archives of Virology (Springer), Transboundary and Emerging Diseases (Wiley), etc. As a career diplomat, Rahmat is passionate about representing Bangladesh and protecting national interests in the global arena. He believes that Princeton's MPA program will add value to his career in science and diplomacy.
Mustafa is a joint MPA/J.D. student at SPIA. Raised in Chicago, and later in Nashville, Tenessee, Mustafa approaches his public service work as social justice advocate and organizer. In all of his work, he centers the praxis of community building, accountability, transformative justice, and the stories of community members in his approach to driving change within and outside the criminal legal system. Prior to Princeton, Mustafa worked at the Vera Institute of Justice, a national nonprofit dedicated to transforming our justice system, where he worked to end mass incarceration by pushing elected prosecutors to adopt diversion policies that shift people away from the criminal legal system, address racial disparities, and make prosecutors’ offices more accountable to the communities they serve. Outside of Vera, Mustafa was appointed by the mayor’s administration of the City of Knoxville as a program specialist to develop, implement, and evaluate violence interruption and prevention programs within the city. His office led street-outreach violence interruption strategies with community-based organizations, coordinated safety innovation and collaboration among City Departments, and enhanced partnerships with on-the-ground people and organizations working to make Knoxville safer. He previously worked with legal teams at Juvenile Law Center advocating for harm reduction and the rights of youth in the child welfare and justice system. In his free time, Mustafa enjoys running, collecting vinyl records, reading, and taking his dog Mars to the dog park.