Students

Our students are English-speaking young professionals from all over the world who plan to enter positions in EU institutions, international organizations, national adminstrations, NGOs or national/multinational companies. Every year ZEI welcomes participants from many different countries. The small class allows for comprehensive individual support as well as for a close student network.

32

Class size

20

Nationalities

31

Average Age

Meet the Class of 2022

Derya Acikalin
© ZEI

Nationality: Turkish

Languages: Turkish (Native), English (C2), German (A2)

Education:

  • BA in English Translation and Interpretation, Istanbul Yeni Yuzyil University
  • MA in International Public Administration, University of Macedonia 

Work experience:

  • English Teacher, British Center Language Schools     (04/02/2019 – 10/04/2020)
  • English Teacher Intern
    Just English TOEFL Center (07/05/2015 –5/07/2015)
  • Court Clerk Intern
    Istanbul Courthouse Intern (14/09/2012 - 06-2013)

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© ZEI

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Hilinary Aksu
© ZEI

Nationality: Turkish

Languages: Kurdish, Turkish (mother language), English, German

Education:

  • BA in Political Science and Public Administraion, Middle East Technical University

Work experience

  • Tax Audit Assistant, Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Ltm (01/10/2018 – 01/04/2019)
  • EU Tender Coordinator,  WEglobal Consulting, (01/07/2019 – 01/09/2020)
  • Project Analyst, Fichtner Management Consulting, (14/06/2020 – Present)

International Experience:

  • ERASMUS Exchange Program at the University of Duisburg-Essen,
  • Volunteership at AIESEC in Germany
  • current DAAD Scholarship holder

Contact: ahilinay@gmail.com

 

Bianca Berndt
© ZEI

Nationality: German 

Languages: German and English

Education:

  • Bachelor of Law – Law, Personnel Management and Personnel Psychology, Brunswick European Law School, Ostfalia University of Applied Sciences  

Work experience

  • HR Payroll Specialist Germany & Commission Analyst EMEA TechData AS GmbH (06/2014 – 09/2018)
  • Management Assistant for Wholesale and Foreign Trade Avnet Technology Solutions GmbH (08/2011 – 06/2014)
    Examination by the German Chamber of Industry and Commerce, graduation with distinction

International Experience:

  • Semester abroad (02/2020 – 06/2020) Murdoch University in Perth, Australia
  • International Model United Nations Geneva General Assembly 2 as a representative of Australia
  • Member of the DLRG Brüggen/ Bracht
  • Member of TERRE DES FEMMES Menschenrechte für die Frau e.V.
Dusan Brujic
© ZEI

Nationality: Serbian

Languages: Serbian, English, German, Spanish

Education:

  • Bachelor in Economics, Metropolitan University

Work experience

  • Internships in different departments in both private and public sector, most notably in German Investment Corporation (KfW DEG) in Cologne

International Experience:

  • Konrad Adenauer Foundation scholarship holder,
  • Participated in many international conferences (e.g. Swiss Model WTO, MEU Strasbourg & Netherlands, European Forum Alpbach, etc.)
  • Organized numerous international events such as Brücken bauen in Europa, Model WTO Belgrade and BSF Forum,
  • 1st place in KPMG Ace the Case and 2nd place in P&G CEO Challenge

Contact: dusanbrujic@gmail.com

Antonina Degtyareva
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Chanwit Ditcharoen
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Andrea Duarte
© ZEI

Nationality: Guatemalan

Languages: Spanish, English and German

Education:

  • Lawyer and Public Notary
    Francisco Marroquin University in Guatemala
  • Bachelor of Juridical and Social Science
    Francisco Marroquin University in Guatemala

Work experience

  • Legal Counsel
    Legionäre Christi e.V.
    Cologne, Germany
    (06.2019 – Present)
  • Technical Coordinator of the Children's Protection Office
    Guatemalan General Attorney’s Office
    Guatemala, Guatemala
  • Head of the Public Information Unit Supreme Electoral Tribunal of Guatemala
    Guatemala, Guatemala

International Experience:

  • Participation in international conferences related to Children’s Migration, representing the Children's Protection Office of Guatemala.
    (El Salvador: 2015, 2016 and Mexico: 2016)
Elona Elezi
© ZEI

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Marie-Agnès Fine
© ZEI

Nationality: French

Languages: English (C1), Spanish (B2) and German (A1)

Education:

  • Engineering degree in Food Industry (Specialisation in Biotechnologies) and Master of Science in Bioprocesses at the ENSAIA in Nancy, France

Work experience

  • IAAS (International Association of students in Agriculture and related Sciences) as Vice-President of Finance and then External Relations in the global board

International Experience:

  • Organisation of international conference, workshops and events with a multicultural team, Participation in trainings and events abroad,
  • Erasmus in Lisbon
Uendi Hajderaj
© ZEI

Nationality: Albanian

Languages: Albanian, English, German, Spanish, French 

Education:

  • Mathematical Economics (BSc), University of Munich (LMU)

Work experience

  • Associate Financial Services US Tax, KPMG AG (2020-2021)
  • Working Student Financial Services US Tax, KPMG AG  (2019-2020)
  • Working Student Sales & Marketing, AVANA Invest GmbH (2018)

International Experience:

  • Erasmus: University of Warwick, Coventry, UK (2018-2019)
  • IAESTE: Marketing & Twinning Coordinator, Junior Workshop Leader (2017-2019)
  •  Warwick Economics Society: Writer at Assumptions Magazine & Blog (2019- present)
  • Foreign Policy News: Contributing Writer (2020- present)
Christopher Jones
© ZEI

Nationality: English and German

Languages: English, German

Education:

  • Bachelor First Class Hons. in Marketing Management from Edinburgh Napier University

Work experience

  • Internship within the Aldi Sued HQ marketing department;
  • 3 years of military leadership, problem-solving and situational adaptability experience through the City of Edinburgh Universities Officer Training Corps with further Mod B training received at Sandhurst Military Academy

International Experience:

  • Born in Germany, but also lived in Abu Dhabi and studied and worked in Edinburgh, Scotland within an international environment for 4 years.

Contact: linkedin.com/in/christopher-michael-jones-05  

Valentino Juergens
© ZEI

Nationality: American and German

Languages: English and German

Education:

  • Bachelor of Business Administration from the University of Wisconsin – Madison

Ege Katircioglu
© ZEI

Nationality:  Turkish

Languages: Turkish (Native), English, French, German

Education:

  • Bilkent University- BSc International Relations

Work experience

  • Project Coordinator/Malala Fund.
  • Migration Certificate Program Assistant/ Konrad Adenauer Foundation(KAS) Turkey
  • Human Resources(HR) Manager/ Content Creator The Research Center on Migration&Asylum(Ankara)

Contact: katirciogluege@gmail.com

Kateryna Khalabuzar
© ZEI

Nationality: Ukrainian

Languages: Ukrainian, Russian, English, German, French

Education:

  • Executive Diploma in the Art of Diplomacy (European Academy of Diplomacy, Warsaw, Poland),
  • Master, “Language and Literature (English)” (Zaporizhzhia National University, Ukraine)

Work experience

  • Project Assistant, Council of Europe Office in Ukraine 
  • Project Assistant, Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH 
  • Language Instructor, “Epoch of International Education“ LLC, USA Embassy in Ukraine 

International Experience:

  • Participant of Warsaw Security Forum (2021),
  • Mentor for EVS volunteer (2017-2018),
  • Peace Corps leadership camps (2008/2009)

Contact

Zahid Hussain Khan
© ZEI

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Hyunjeong Kim
© ZEI

Nationality:  Korean

Languages: Korean, English

Education:

  • Bachelor's degree, Jeonbuk National University

Work experience

  • Civil engineer in public company (20years)

Contact: toncle@lh.or.kr

Hüseyin Kutlu Köycü
© ZEI

Nationality: Turkish

Languages: Turkish, English, French

Education:

  • Gazi University (Undergraduate Degree)
  • Ankara University – Northeastern University (USA) (Graduate Degrees) 
  • Ankara University (PhD)

Work experience

  • Turkey’s Ministry of Trade - DG for Consumer Protection and Market Surveillance (2007 to present)

International Experience:

  • Representing Turkey in a) OECD’s Committee on Consumer Policy (CCP) b) International Consumer Protection and Market Surveillance (ICPEN) c) International Conference of Trade and Development (UNCTAD) d) Accession process between Turkey and the European Union in Chapter 28, Protection of Health and Consumers

Contact: k.koycu@ticaret.gov.tr

Man Yee Li
© ZEI

Nationality:  Hong Kong

Languages: Chinese (Cantonese native and Mandarin), English and Elementary German

Education:

  • BSSc in Public Administration and Management , City University of Hong Kong

Work experience

  • Assistant Director, Global Innovation Hub and Greater China Office, Friedrich Naumann Foundation for the Freedom (2017-2020)
  • Over 15 years experience in External Relations, Programmes, Communications and Fundraising.

International Experience:

  • Organise FNF Digital ChangeMakers Delegations (2018,2019) ,
  • Hosting VIPs visit (Germany, Norway and Denmark. etc)

Contact: dugcarrie@gmail.com

Caroline Frances Mair
© ZEI

Nationality: Scottish

Languages: English

Caroline comes from Edinburgh where she has been working as a lawyer for nearly 20 years. She gained her bachelor’s degree in law (LLB Hons) and diploma in legal practice from Dundee University. After starting her career in commercial practice, she spent 10 years working in the Scottish Government where she gained in-depth experience in human rights and EU law issues and travelled widely across the EU to take part in legal projects. She spent time as Private Secretary to the Scottish Cabinet Secretary for Culture and External Affairs and worked at the Supreme Courts of Scotland. Since March 2018, she has worked at the Scottish Parliament where she advises on legislation and high-level constitutional issues as such as Scotland’s relationship with the rest of the UK, and the UK’s exit from the European Union. She is currently on a career break to study for her master’s degree at ZEI.

Contact: cfmair@gmail.com

Marie Mechela
© ZEI

Nationality:  German

Languages: German, English, Spanish, French

Education:

  • Bachelors degree in Corporate Management & Economics, Minor degree in Politics & International Relations from Zeppelin University, Germany

Work experience

  • Professional experience in Social Entrepreneurship & Diversity and Online Marketing & Sales as Internship and Working student

International Experience:

  • Two semesters abroad in Spain,
  • Voluntary social year in Santiago de Chile,
  • Volunteering in different organisations in Spain and Germany

Contact: marie.mechela@gmx.net

Avatar
© ZEI

Nationality: Lebanese

Languages: Fluent in Arabic, English, French; basic German.

Education:

  • Bachelor of Sciences in Economics from Notre-Dame University

Work experience

  • Professional Experience: Celine Merhej is a researcher and analyst specialized in supporting democratic governance reforms, with a focus on anti-corruption, transparency, and the rule of law with previous experience in managing a project related to transparency in the public sector at Gherbal Initiative.  Ms. Merhej has had previous experience with UNDP’s regional anti-corruption project in the Arab states specifically in Lebanon, Tunisia, Jordan, Morocco, and Iraq, as well as an International observer for the Carter Center in the Tunisian Presidential Elections in 2019. She has also worked on Freedom of Expression cases analysis for Columbia University’s Global Freedom of Expression Project and is a certified facilitator by the British Council.
Hiu Ling Ng
© ZEI

Nationality: Hong Kong

Languages: Cantonese (Native language), English, Mandarin

Education:

  • BBA (Hons) in Marketing and Minor in European Studies, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University

Work experience

  • Analyst, NielsenIQ 
  • Account Executive, GfK 
  • Research Assistant, Kantar 

International Experience:

  • Exchange student, Wirtschaftsuniversität Wien - Summer semester, 2017
  • Summer Intern - Tailwind Solutions Limited (Scotland) - Summer break, 2016

Ashaben Patel
© ZEI

Nationality: American

Languages: English, Hindi, and Gujarati

Education:

  • B.S. Political Science, Middle Tennessee State University

Work experience

  • Intern, Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights Center

International Experience:

  • Peace Corps Volunteer

Sivakalyan Reddy Patil
© ZEI

Nationality:  Indian

Education:

  • Ba Finance and Banking From LJMU Liverpool

Work experience

  • Credit Union and its Substantial growth of Membership
  • Voluntary Work for NHS partners
  • Active Campaigner member of Conservative Party.

Jocelyne Rodríguez-Borisch
© ZEI

Nationality: Mexican

Languages: Spanish, English, Chinese (basic) and German (basic)

Education:

  • Diploma Specialist in Political Science, Seneca Institute, Madrid, Spain
  • B.Sc. in Psychology, University of Guadalajara, Mexico
  • Student Research Assistant, Coordination of Investigation and Postgraduate Department, University of Guadalajara

Work experience

  • Private Language Instructor for Spanish
  • Head English Teacher, American Select English, Qingdao, China,
  • Founder and CEO of “Eyes Wide Open”, Program to Prevent Child Sexual Abuse in Mexico

International Experience:

  • Delegate for Change the World Model United Nations 2021 New York City
  • Scholarship holder, Student Mobility at University of Seville, Spain

Contact: jocey.rc@gmail.com

Mikhael Sanchez
© ZEI

Nationality:  Filipino

Languages: English, Filipino

Education:

  • Bachelor of Science in Business Administration major in Human Resource Management
    CIT-University, Philippines
    Cum Laude,
  • Bachelor of Science in Business Administration major in Quality Management, CIT-University, Philippines

Work experience

  • Universal Banking Ambassador, Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation Singapore  

  • Unsecured Product Specialist, Price Solutions Singapore

  • US Market Research Team Leader, Western WATS Philippines Incorporated

International Experience:

  • 2019 Excellent Service Award, Gold - EXSA Singapore
  • 2018 Excellent Service Award, Silver - EXSA Singapore

Contact: mikhael.sanchez.de@gmail.com

Philipp Sandmann
© ZEI

Nationality: German

Languages: German, Englisch, Spanish

Education:

  • B.Sc. Biology (Georg-August-Universität Göttingen),
  • M.Sc. Aquaculture (Universität Rostock)

Work experience

  • Researcher, University of Rostock 

International Experience:

  • Presentation at EAS Conference 2019,
  • Student Research Internship CCAR, Maine (USA)

Contact: https://www.linkedin.com/in/philipp-sandmann-8b5634144/

Sirmahan Sayar
© ZEI

Nationality: Turkish

Languages: Turkish, English, German

Education:

  • Bachelor or Law, Yeditepe University

Work experience

  • Partner, Sayer  Law Firm, Marmaris (2010- present)
  • Lawyer, D&D Partnership, Istanbul, International Arbitration
  • Officicall listed Lawyer of Honorary Embassy of UK Government (2018- present)

International Experience:

  • KAPLAN INTERNATIONAL – Washington DC 
  • TRAVELLER – traveled in more than 20 countries on the world.
Koen Verhelst
© ZEI

Nationality:  Dutch

Languages: Dutch (native), English (C2), German (C1), Latvian (A2)

Education

  • BA Journalism, Christian University of Applied Science, Ede, the Netherlands 

Work experience:

  • Nordic & Baltic correspondent based in Riga (Latvia). Covering politics, economics and the energy transition in 8 countries for several media outlets such as NPO Radio 1, FD.nl, Business Insider (all Netherlands), Tijd.be (Belgium), Euronews (France), Deutsche Welle (Germany) and many others (2014 - present)
  • Editor foreign news desk - publishing house Wegener (Netherlands) (2010-2014).

International Experience:

  • 2009 - Reporting project through the South Caucasus, Central Asia, Russia and the Baltics
  • 2016 - Participant of the Baltic Sea Youth Dialogue/Solidarity Academy in Gdańsk, Poland
  • 2017 - Grantee in the Reporters in the Field scheme, n-ost & Robert Bosch Stiftung
  • 2019 - Guest reporter, Rheinische Post, Düsseldorf, Germany
Nicole Emellie Yu
© ZEI

Nationality: Filipino

Languages: Tagalog, English, Japanese, Spanish, German

Education:

  • Business Administration and Internal Auditing (Pre-Law)

Work experience

  • Journalism
  • Intellectual Property Law

International Experience:

  • Fulbright Scholar at the University of Mississippi,
  • Hanns Seidel Foundation Scholar

Contact: nicoleemellie@gmail.com

Eliot Zenunaj
© ZEI

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