Name: Tobias Birsak
What are you interested in studying at the DA? I love the MAIS' multidisciplinary approach. As a lawyer, I have the chance to broaden my horizon and learn about economics, history and international relations. The DA's French classes are excellent. Also, I thoroughly enjoy all the extracurricular offers for students, be they organized by the DA itself or the DASI Committees and Societies. From study trips and volleyball to wine tastings and career talks, being a student at the DA never gets boring.
What's your favourite thing about living and studying in Vienna? Vienna has been my hometown for many years and I still enjoy living here. It is indeed one of the most livable cities in the world. And although I know Vienna well, studying at the DA gives me the chance to see the city through the eyes of my international peers and learn something new about it every day.
Name: Jade Moussa
Country of Origin: Lebanon, Canada
University of Origin: McGill University, Canada
Previous studies: Political Science & Biology
What are you interested in studying at the DA? I have always been interested in identity as a political construct, its imposition on communities and individuals, and its transformation and re-appropriation. I focused mainly on refugee and minority identities, specifically the Middle East and in Lebanon. At the DA however, I would like to broaden my horizons, and focus on gender and queer identity in the international sphere, as well as nationalism and post-colonial borders.
What's your favourite thing about living and studying in Vienna? Vienna is such a gorgeous city. It’s like living in a museum; every corner has a story to tell. It is so rich in art and culture, and there is always something to do, no matter what day of the week it is. There is always something to learn. Also I love how central it is and how easy it is to travel to different cities and countries.
Name: Patrick Osland
Country of Origin: Canada
University of Origin: Carleton University
Previous studies: Political Science (BA Hons)
I was drawn to the Diplomatic Academy as it provides a multi-disciplinary education with an emphasis on key areas that are fundamental to working in International Affairs. The Academy has provided the privilege of engaging in global issues with Austria’s most brilliant minds. My research interests while studying here have lay in global hegemony and the balance of power. I am currently writing my thesis on the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement between Canada and the European Union.
Name: Else Wallén
Countries of Origin: Sweden
University of Origin: University of Bath, UK
Previous studies: European Studies & Modern Languages
What are you interested in studying at the DA? My main academic interests are foreign affairs, security and defence policy. During my first year at the DA I took classes related to EU foreign policy, human rights, conflict resolution and cyber security. I intend to pursue this path during my second year in preparation for my master thesis, which will deal with Nordic-Baltic security (if everything goes according to plan).
What's your favourite thing about living and studying in Vienna? I have had an on and off relationship with the city of Vienna for almost 7 years now. I keep thinking that I know the place inside out, but every time I come back I discover something new. Vienna never ceases to amaze me, whether in its role as a bastion or vanguard of culture. The city’s got everything between nature and nightlife, no wonder the Mercer Quality of Living Survey has ranked Vienna first for six consecutive years!
Name: Birgit van Duyvenbode
Country of Origin: Austria
University of Origin: Vienna University of Economics and Business
Previous studies: International Business Administration
What are you interested in studying at the DA? During my time in Indonesia, I experienced first-hand the social impact of various severe environmental issues, such as water and air pollution and the lack of waste disposal systems. The ETIA programme allows me to combine international political, economic, legal and historical studies with the technical knowledge necessary for finding comprehensive solutions to environmental challenges.
What's your favourite thing about living and studying Vienna? It is not without reason that Vienna is ranked among the most liveable cities in the world. Vienna provides the perfect surrounding for a decent life, not only in terms of education, work, and public infrastructure but also through its multiple green spots and good quality of drinking water. What I personally enjoy most is Vienna’s artistic and musical landscape with its wide range of concerts, operas, and theatres.
Name: Marie-Elisabeth von Bomhard
Country of Origin: Germany
University of Origin: Royal Holloway University of London
Previous studies: Mathematics
What are you interested in studying at the DA? My aim at the DA is to build a strong academic basis and become well-versed in the fields of Economics, Law, History and Political Science. In addition, the DA’s international and interdisciplinary setting offers many opportunities to learn outside the classroom, from peers or at professional conferences. DA students receive numerous special invitations to speeches, panels and conferences where they can experience current issues and debates - alongside diplomats, politicians and academics- first hand.
What's your favorite thing about living and studying Vienna? Vienna is rated as one of the most liveable cities worldwide. When I walk around the centre past horse and carriages, museums, theatres and palaces, Vienna fills me with awe; its rich history, charm and beauty are a daily source of inspiration.
This cultural aspect together with Vienna’s relaxed and international environment makes it my number one city to live in.
Name: Liliana Morales Rodriguez
Country of Origin: Mexico
University of Origin: Universidad Iberoamericana Ciudad de México, Maastricht University
Previous studies: International Relations
What are you interested in studying at the DA? The most interesting part about studying in the ETIA program is the variety of courses that we get to study at the DA and TU. Ranging from history and law to physics and chemistry, this programme allows us to go into depth in both social and environmental aspects at the same time. This programme is a perfect choice to understand and analyse current and future environmental problems, which are becoming extraordinarily important in the international agenda.
What is your favourite thing about living and studying in Vienna? I have been living here for a year and I can honestly say that Vienna keeps on surprising me every time. Whether it is going to a historical building, a park, a museum exposition, or even a nightclub, Vienna never disappoints. In this city you will never get bored!
Name: Majd Nassan
Country of Origin: Syria
University of Origin: American University of Beirut
Previous studies: Political Science and Minor in International Law
What are you interested in studying at the DA? The Diplomatic Academy is known for its diversity and its interdisciplinary approach. As such I felt that it can truly offer me a unique experience which no other university can. Moreover, I am a language enthusiast and the DLG program provides me with extensive language training which would certainly prove helpful in the future. It is also worth mentioning that I come from a Middle Eastern background and although my bachelor was in an American university, I nonetheless was taught from a Middle Eastern perspective, accordingly, I believe it is necessary to learn politics from a European perspective because it broadens my ability to comprehend different scenarios.
What's your favourite thing about living and studying Vienna? It is undeniable that the city of Vienna is one of the cultural centers of the world. Many international organizations have headquarters in this majestic city, moreover, many people in this city are quite knowledgeable about certain topics that interest me, namely the Middle East. Lastly, I have a passion for classical music and no other city can compete with Vienna in that regard.
Name: Raphael Spoetta
Country of Origin: Austria
University of Origin: University of Vienna
Previous studies: Political Science
What are you interested in studying at the DA? The DA provides the great opportunity of dealing with the most important aspects of international relations on a truly interdisciplinary basis. Be it economics, international law or history – it is hard to choose from the wide range of highly interesting courses. However, I am foremost interested in multilateral diplomacy and nuclear non-proliferation.
What's your favourite thing about living and studying in Vienna? As a native Viennese, I particularly enjoy the amazing mélange of Viennese charm, sometimes mistaken as grumpiness, and the richness of cultures and personalities I continually come in touch with at the DA.