Taking a ferry from one continent to the next was the daily commute for Boise State senior Cassandra Sullivan while she spent five months studying in Istanbul, Turkey, the only city in the world that spans two continents, Europe and Asia.
While in Turkey, Sullivan not only pursued her degree in economics, but also interned at the United States Consulate. Her internship work dealt with the economic trade relations between the United States and Turkey. It was a continuation of her internship in Boise at the Department of Commerce.
Working in Turkey gave her the chance to see a new perspective, however Sullivan felt her skills could be used better in other fields.
“I don’t think that it makes that big of an impact, for all the work that they do,” Sullivan said about her time at the consulate.
This led Sullivan to Haiti, where she worked for three and a half weeks last summer. For the past year, Sullivan has been studying country development and writing on the topic. She wanted to see what these situations were like up close.
“I realized I’d written about a topic that I had never observed firsthand. I kind of have a personal philosophy against that,” Sullivan said.
In Haiti she volunteered at a Tuberculosis clinic, taught English to adults and children, ran a debate camp and helped run a summer camp at an orphanage.
Sullivan’s current endeavor is the Rhodes Fellowship. She recently submitted her application to the most prestigious fellowship in the world, a full ride and stipend to Oxford for graduate school.
“It’s a really good platform to propel you to do really great things,” Sullivan said about the fellowship.
Professor Andrew Finstuen, director of the Honors College at Boise State, worked closely with Sullivan on her Rhodes Fellowship application. He also worked with her on the Truman Fellowship application that she submitted last year and for which she became a finalist.
“It’s a lot of fun to work with highly motivated students who really care about what they’re doing and where they’re going” Finstuen said.
Sullivan explained how the application process for these sorts of things is very intensive, but also very rewarding.
“Just the process of applying helps you learn about yourself,” Sullivan said.
Sullivan’s pursuit of careers has gone through multiple changes throughout her time at university. One thing which remains constant is her hard working attitude and aptitude to take every advantage that she can to better her education.
“My long term goal is to do 1,001 things,” Sullivan said.
With no exact profession in mind, she is intending to pursue a master’s degree in international development and focus on international education and education policies and institutions.
“I think Cassie would want to say, ‘I don’t really think of myself as set apart from other students,’” Finstuen said.““I’m like any other student in that we all have the ability and potential to work hard and push ourselves and care about our education and care about the world.’”