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Elizabeth Phu

Q&A: Elizabeth Phu ‘00
Nov. 5, 2014, IR/PS News

Elizabeth Phu is the current director for Oceania and East Asian Security Affairs, National Security Council Staff at the White House. In this interview, she speaks of her experiences at IR/PS and gives valuable advice to current students.

Sungjun Oh

Q&A: Sungjun Oh ’14
July 29, 2014, IR/PS News

A new graduate discusses his own return to IR/PS — he was 8 years old when his father was studying in San Diego — his time at the School and the importance of diversity for students.

Paul Lamb

Q&A: Paul Lamb ’95
May 7, 2014, IR/PS News

Paul Lamb was gracious enough to be the first in a new Q&A series highlighting IR/PS alumni.

Mark Higgins

On the Front Lines of Clean Energy: Mark Higgins, MPIA ’04
May 7, 2014, UC San Diego News

In the decade since graduating from UC San Diego’s School of International Relations and Pacific Studies (IR/PS), Mark Higgins, MPIA ’04 has established himself as a power broker in the clean energy sector—a leader whose work will have a significant impact on our future.

Alumni Mark Spalding 

Q&A with Mark Spalding, MPIA '92
UC San Diego Triton Magazine (Jan. 2014)

IR/PS alumnus Mark Spalding MPIA '92, President of The Ocean Foundation has lectured at IR/PS, Scripps Institution of Oceanography and other campus departments and regularly hosts summer interns at The Ocean Foundation.

Richard Boly, MPIA '92

We Are Tritons - Richard Boly, MPIA '92
October 21, 2013, UC San Diego Alumni News

IR/PS alumnus Richard Boly is the director of the Office of eDiplomacy, an applied technology think tank for the U.S. Department of State, and is featured in this Q&A.

Outstanding Alumni

Each year, IR/PS Alumni seek to recognize graduates for success in their careers and contributions to society. This honor is given to those who exemplify the positive contributions IR/PS graduates make through their careers, volunteer work and community involvement. Awards are made for outstanding achievement in any of the following areas:

  • Professional achievement
  • Volunteer work
  • Humanitarianism
  • Single exceptional achievement
  • Service to IR/PS

2014 Winners

The 2014 Outstanding Award Winners are Jorge Blandón ’01 and Kahori Matsui ’99.

Jorge Blandón Jorge Blandón, MPIA ’01
Blandón currently works for the Family Independence Initiative (FII) where he leads the data collection and analysis efforts. With data he is challenging stereotypes and showcasing the initiatives and progress working – poor families make on behalf of themselves and their communities. He takes those real insights and transforms them into resources that are tailored to the unique demands of families that are part of FII. Prior to joining FII, Blandón worked for seven years in the financial securitization sector, focusing on essential infrastructure projects in the U.S. and abroad as well as underwriting U.S. municipal bonds.

Kahori Matsui Kahori Matsui, MPIA ’99
Matsui joined SoftBank in 2010 after 10+ years of management consulting and new business development experiences at Accenture and Recruit. She has managed its strategic transactions including its acquisition of Sprint in 2012-2013, the largest overseas acquisition by a Japanese firm. She recently moved to San Francisco and is the vice president of strategy and business development of SoftBank Product Group to lead various projects involving SoftBank major assets in the U.S. market.


Past Winners

(2013) Emily Murase, MPIA '90
(2012) David An, MPIA '07
(2011) Richard Boly, MPIA '92 and Mark Spalding, MPIA '92
(2010) Gary Bremermann, MPIA '91
(2009) Brooke Partridge, MPIA '91
(2008) Gigo Alampay, MPIA '96, Dr. Jodi Finkel, MPIA '92, and Kevin Trepa, MPIA '05
(2007) Kama Dean, MPIA '01 and Chris Pesenti, MPIA '01
(2006) Paul Lamb, MPIA '95, was also honored as the Distinguished Alumni of the Year by the UC San Diego Alumni Association

Peace Corps Profiles

In celebration of UC San Diego's 50th Anniversary, IR/PS profiled 40 Peace Corps volunteers among its alumni and current student body in 2010. Contact Mary Jo Ball to update or add your profile today.