Biographical Profiles of Current MPA Graduate Students
Ajita is an Indian Civil Servant (IRTS '14), having worked with the Ministry of Railways for five years beginning in 2015. Her work profile includes operational planning and execution of movement of freight and passenger trains; modernisation of freight terminals; redevelopment of railway stations through PPP models; coordination with sister district administration bodies for expansion of railway projects; and improving safety and preparedness for disaster management. She also worked on improving the revenue generation through capacity addition of passenger and freight trains; upgradation of passenger amenities in railway stations; working on new revenue models for commercial contracts and advertising; redressal of public grievances; streamlining CSR funds for railway projects and coordination with Members of Parliament (MPs) for policy/legislative initiatives addressing public demands. This past summer, Ajita completed her MPA internship with The World Bank.
Nitya is from New Jersey, however has grown up in New York, Tokyo, New Delhi, and Phoenix. Prior to Princeton, she worked at IDinsight in New Delhi, where she conducted research to inform the central government's policy behind India's National Nutrition Mission. Her work focused specifically on the nutritional behaviours of pregnant and lactating women and behaviour change communication programming. In her free time, Nitya enjoys novels and television of the dramatic genre, creative writing, playing badminton, taking walks, or drinking tea with family and friends. After graduation, she would like to continue working in international development, with particular interests in global health or education. Nitya completed her internship this summer with The World Bank.
Jack hails from Northport, New York, and is interested in the intersection between economic development and political institutions. This interest motivated his undergraduate studies in economics at Princeton University and inspired him to live in Varanasi, India, for a year through Princeton's Bridge Year Program where he worked with a local school and studied Hindi. Jack has interned with UNICEF's Office of Civil Society Partnerships in New York, in local government on Long Island, and at the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. He plans to help make U.S. foreign assistance work better for the developing world as a civil servant after completing the MPA program and is grateful to the SINSI program for making his education possible. Outside of the classroom, Jack enjoys camping and biking.
Juan Pablo was born and raised in Cuernavaca, Mexico. He majored in economics at the Monterrey Institute of Technology and Higher Education, graduating with honors. While at university, he was appointed Youth Delegate for the 2012 G-20 meeting. In 2014, he was invited to speak at the Winter Youth Assembly at U.N. Headquarters in New York. Juan Pablo has served as Advisor to the President of the Mexican National Congress and as Head of Department in Social Evaluation of Projects in the Ministry of Treasury. After a switch from public service to humanitarian work, he joined the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR). At UNHCR, he co-designed an innovative program focusing on internal resettlement and local integration support, including job placement and psychosocial services. After four years, this program has helped more than 7,000 refugees rebuild their lives with dignity while contributing to Mexico's formal economy. In 2019, Juan Pablo was awarded the Fulbright-García Robles Scholarship. During the summer of 2021, he completed an internship with The World Bank. He is co-author of the book "Transparency and Access to Public Information in Mexico," published as part of a collection edited by the former Supreme Court Minister. Juan Pablo's research interests include examining the interface between public service and humanitarian aid, and the link between humanitarian interventions and economic development. He hopes to one day write a novel.
Zainab was born and raised in Lahore, Pakistan. She graduated from Mount Holyoke College in 2017, with a major in international relations and minors in economics and journalism. Perhaps the most important thing she learned at Mount Holyoke College was the spirit of giving back, where an entire chain of women across several decades had ensured she could gain the education, community, and mentorship she needed and wanted. Prior to coming to Princeton, she spent three years as a development consultant at Delivery Associates, exploring her own version of giving back: working with governments to achieve large scale systemic reform in sectors including education and sanitation. She has worked in Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Saint Lucia, and more recently with the Gates Foundation. This past summer, Zainab interned with IDinsight. She is still learning how to be of value to governments, get results, and leave systems better than they are found – and could not have chosen a place other than Princeton to learn how to give back better. In her free time, she writes, cooks, travels, and talks (a little too much) about her 5-year-old niece.