Alumni Scholarships
07 December 2019

Kennedy Mmasi Receives 2019-2020 Washington, D.C. Alumni Chapter Scholarship

The Graduate Institute’s Washington, D.C. Alumni Chapter has been awarding their eponymous scholarship for 10 years.

Where are you from and what is your background?

I was born and raised in Arusha, Tanzania. I moved to the United States to pursue a Bachelor in Economics at Harvard University. There, I led the Youth Alliance for Leadership and Development, creating a forum for youth in Africa to share ideas on innovative solutions for development challenges in their communities. This organisation facilitated conferences, workshops and internships connecting college students from Africa to work together in developing solutions for various challenges in education and health care. After university, I spent three years working in various sectors including consulting, technology and a non-profit organisation in New York and Boston.

Why did you choose to apply to the Graduate Institute?

I chose the Graduate Institute due to its top reputation in the study of international affairs, given the top faculty and its close proximity to the major international organisations in Geneva.

How did this scholarship make a difference for you?

The Washington, D.C. Alumni Chapter Scholarship has given me the opportunity to afford an education at the Graduate Institute, allowing me to advance my interests in gaining an education in the field of international affairs.

What is the focus of your studies at the Institute; on which topic do you plan to write your master's thesis?

I am pursuing a Master in International Affairs with a focus in international finance and trade. I hope to write my thesis looking at the conditions under which trade liberalisation can lead to inclusive economic growth in developing countries.

What are your plans for your professional career after your studies?

I hope to work in the field of international trade focusing on building economic policies that can enable developing countries to maximise gains from trade. I hope my education over the two years at the Graduate Institute will allow me to make a meaningful contribution in the trade and development field across the world, starting in Tanzania and other sub-Saharan African countries. 

In my free time, I enjoy playing soccer, hiking mountains and cooking with friends.

Do you want to support a student who is following in your footsteps at the Graduate Institute? Why not contribute to an alumni scholarship? Find out more here:

The Washington, D.C. Alumni Chapter Scholarship was created to promote awareness of the Graduate Institute in the United States, while also helping the Institute recruit graduate students of high calibre. The Scholarship is available for first-year masters or doctoral students, irrespective of nationality, who wish to study at the Institute from an American university. It is awarded based on academic achievement and then economic need and funds nine months of study.