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Student Leadership/ICSF

International Communication Student Forum

The International Communication Student Forum (ICSF) is the student organization of the International Communication Program. The ICSF furthers the objectives of the IC program by encouraging students to make specialized academic and professional contributions to the field. ICSF is a student-led organization that promotes interaction among students, faculty, alumni and professionals working in the field of international communication. ICSF also creates opportunities for networking and information sharing.

ICSF encourages students to:

  • Directly influence the quality of the IC program experience
  • Meet and network with other IC students
  • Discuss issues relevant to the IC field and studies
  • Plan and attend IC related events

The mission and purpose of the ICSF are:

  • To promote the social, economic and academic rights of International Communication students
  • To increase interaction between the students and faculty of the International Communication Program at American University
  • To provide an effective resource for student participation and input into the continuing development of both the general field of International Communication and the specific program in International Communication at American University
  • To facilitate the formation of a more coherent identity for students involved in all aspects of this interdisciplinary field

International Communication Student Forum Board

Lauren Radziminsky

Lauren Radziminski 

Lauren is a first-year International Communications graduate student. Hailing from Huntsville, Alabama, she received her bachelor of arts in International Relations with a Western Europe concentration with minors in French and General Business Administration from the University of Alabama. (Roll Tide!) Since high school Lauren has been interested in the global community, traveling to France and Italy, as well as spending her final fall semester studying in Montpellier, France. Before entering into the IC program at American, she volunteered her time to rebuild homes and communities in Tuscaloosa, Alabama, resulting from an EF-4 tornado and help out her Huntsville family and community. As part of studying International Communications, she hopes to integrate the field into her interests of social enterprise and understanding culture in international business.

Elaine Clayton

 Elaine Clayton 

Elaine is a first year graduate student in the International Communications program exploring public and cultural diplomacy. Her first step into the international affairs world was through an internship with the nonprofit Dog Meets World. She assisted with "photo diplomacy", giving personal portraits to those in developing countries, and discovered her love of cross-cultural understanding. After befriending people from various backgrounds and immersing herself in Catalan during her semester in Barcelona, the only thing bringing her back to the US was her acceptance email from the Department of State. Elaine has been a Pathways Intern since the summer of 2011, moving from facilitating seminars at the Foreign Service Institute to learning communication skills in the Office of Recruitment and Outreach, and is currently delving into the Office of Global Food Security. Elaine graduated from the University of Maryland with a double major in International Relations and Cultural Anthropology. She is excited to explore the field of public and cultural diplomacy with a focus on new media and international exchanges.

Jessica Andrews

Jessica is a second year MA IM candidate, interested in the role media can play in the advancement of developing nations. She did her undergrad at Arizona State University in broadcast journalism and will always be a Sun Devil for life. For her honors thesis, she chose to do a creative project and created a 30 minute documentary about the Lodestar Day Resource Center, a homeless resource center in central Phoenix. Jessica has studied in both Greece and Italy and after graduating from ASU, moved to Amsterdam and worked as an Au Pair. She was a competitive swimmer for most her life, so she loves swimming and has taught and coached swimming for eight years, including in Amsterdam. Jessica also loves traveling, like everyone in the IC/IM programs and can’t wait for her next trip! And she is still in search of the best Mexican food in DC, so if anyone knows a place, let her know!

Claire Baumann 

Claire is a second year student pursuing a Masters in Public and Cultural Diplomacy. She currently works as a Teaching Assistant for a Cross-Cultural Communication undergraduate class and also conducts research for American University on the impact of study abroad programs. Claire comes to DC from New York City after working for an educational tour operator where she managed and led travel programs for leading US cultural institutions, including The Metropolitan Museum of Art and The National Trust for Historic Preservation. Claire also worked in Public Programs at the American Museum of Natural History, as well as a communications consultant for La Casa Cultura Solidaria in Cusco, Peru. Her travel includes Egypt, Jordan, Cyprus, Russia, Montenegro, and The United Arab Emirates. Additionally, she has lived in Italy, Costa Rica and Peru. Claire holds an undergraduate degree in History, minor in Art History and concentrations in Anthropology and Fine Arts from Douglass College, Rutgers University.

Evan Carlson 

Evan is a second year student in the International Communications Program at the School of International Service. He comes to Washington, DC having spent the last 5 years working as a Press Secretary and Communications Director for political campaigns from local to the national level. He has worked directly with Governors, Senators and Vice President Joe Biden. Evan’s interest in international relations lies in the political messaging that takes place between states, transnational corporations and global civil society organizations.

“Given that there so many competing interests around the world, it is critical for organizations and governments to effectively shape their arguments in order to successfully implement policy in a global sphere,” Evan explains. “This is even more important as nations emerge into new eras of democracy such as those involved in the revolutions of the Arab Spring. How these governments present themselves to the world over the coming months and years will shape international policy in the region for decades.”

Caitlin Morrison

Caitlin Morrison 

Caitlin is a second year student in the IC program and specializing in Public Diplomacy. When not in class, she works with Professor Levinson on cutting-edge topics in social enterprise and communication for developing countries. Caitlin hails from the suburbs of Philadelphia where she has two wonderful sisters (10 and 16) and graduated from Syracuse University in 2010 with a degree in International Relations and German. During her senior year at Syracuse she wrote an Honors thesis that integrated diplomacy and language, entitled "Man vs. Machine: Interpreting the Ambiguities in Diplomatic Negotiations," and used this as a starting point for some possible career fields. Before joining the IC Progrom, Caitlin worked as an annuity specialist with Prudential Financial and as a bilingual nanny a German family. Caitlin was excited to join the IC program at AU, and plans to study how linguistics relates to strategic communication. She believes that the heart of international relations is communications, and draws inspiration from the quote: "The single biggest problem with communication is the illusion that it has taken place." Caitlin hopes to find a place where she can mitigate this illusion and foster true communication in her future work.

IC Shayna Padavano

Shayna Padovano 

Shayna is a second year IC student currently pursuing a self-designed concentration in International Business Communication, and has a sub-interest in Cultural Diplomacy. She is a Lead Project Coordinator and Research Associate at the Center for Research on Collaboratories and Technology Enhanced Learning Communities (COTELCO), housed in the School of International Service. Shayna came to American University after five years as a producer, writer, and actress in New York City. She has also lived in Italy where she studied, performed, and taught theatre and English in Reggio Emilia, Padova, Arezzo, Spoleto, and Florence. Shayna grew up in Boston, Massachusetts and Singapore, and has travelled extensively throughout South Asia. These experiences greatly influenced Shayna's commitment to doing work on an global scale. Shayna holds a BFA in Theatre Arts and a Minor in Italian Studies from Boston University.

Z'leste Wanner

Z'leste is a second year IC student interested in innovation, entrepreneurship and global knowledge sharing networks and transfer. Regionally she is focused on South America, after having spent over three years living in Chile studying and then returning to work as an English teacher, translator and for an executive education company that coordinated programs between US MBA schools and executives across Latin America. She also has experience working with local social development programs in Brazil and Colombia. Currently, she interns at Partners of the Americas, with their Youth Sports Management Exchange and A Ganar programs. Before coming to AU she was working in San Francisco with an entrepreneur to develop two start-up companies, focusing on communications and business development. Her undergraduate degree from the University of California, Santa Barbara is in Global Studies.

Amy Wozniak 

Amy is a second year International Communications student, interested in public diplomacy and the geopolitics of information and its effects on national security. She currently works as a research associate in the COTELCO Research Lab on campus, using data-mining and content analysis software on large text-based datasets. Before coming to American University, Amy taught English in Thailand, and travelled in Cambodia, Thailand, Laos, Singapore, and Malaysia. She pursued a Certificate in Global Affairs from New York University while she was working full-time as a sales representative in New York City. Her undergraduate degree is in Business Administration from the University at Buffalo.

Ginnie Seger

Ginnie Seger

Ginnie is an current International Media student, at American University. She graduated from Virginia Commonwealth University with a degree in broadcast journalism. During her undergraduate education, she studied abroad in both Ghana and China. After completing her degree in 2008, she joined the Peace Corps where she served in Kenya as an education volunteer for deaf communities until 2011. While in the Peace Corps, she worked to create a strategic health campaign for populations who are deaf in Kenya. In the future she hopes to manage communications for a non-profit organization, with particular interest in the use of social media in the developing world.

Olga Sevcuka 

Olga is a first year student in International Communication with an interest in intercultural training and communication, as well as cultural diplomacy. She received her Bachelor's Degrees in Global and International Studies and Spanish from the University of Kansas, where she also served as a Student Ambassador for international students. Previously, she interned with the Department of Education and worked on international education quality and policy within the APEC region. Her interest in intercultural training and communication is informed by her personal experience immigrating to the U.S. from Latvia and her experience working with Russian and Hispanic communities in Kansas.

Laurin-Whitney Gottbrath

Laurin-Whitney Gottbrath 

Laurin is a first year student, studying International Media. She spent the last year serving in Palestine as part of the ELCA's Young Adults in Global Mission Program. In Palestine, she worked on improving a local school's communication plan and taught film, photography, and radio skills to the youth of a refugee camp in Bethlehem. Before living in Palestine, Laurin-Whitney graduated from Valparaiso University where she studied Television and Radio Production and spent a significant amount of her time starting the campus' television station. Laurin-Whitney is most interested in how the Media plays a role in the peace process in the Middle East, specifically in Israel/Palestine.

Mariam Samsoudine 

Mariam is an MA IC candidate interested in the role of Cultural Diplomacy in Intelligence and Security. She graduated from Revelle College at the University of California San Diego, obtaining a BA in Political Science with a focus on International Relations, and a minor in French Literature. As an undergraduate student, she spent a year in France at the Institut d'Études Politiques de Paris (Sciences Po), where she developed interests in cross-cultural communication and the role of media in conflict. Having worked for several years in events and hospitality, Mariam is a “foodie” and likes to plan and attend events. She is passionate about travel, and enjoys exploring new cities and cultures.

Brittany Lehr

Brittany is a first-year graduate student in the International Communication program. Originally from Keene, NH, Brittany holds a B.A. in Spanish Language and Literature with a minor in Business Studies from Providence College and an M.A. in Spanish with aspecialization in Hispanic Cultural Studies from Central Connecticut State University. As anundergraduate, Brittany spent a year at the Center for Modern Languages at the University of Granada in Granada, Spain, and during her first Master’s Degree spent a summer studying in Salamanca, Spain. From these experiences she has developed a strong interest in international exchange as a means of fostering global mutual understanding. While in the International Communication program, Brittany will focus on International Education and Cultural Diplomacy.

Don't Forget to Join the ICSF Listserv

The best way to stay informed about ICSF events and news of interest to IC students is to join the ICSF mailing list. It’s simple:

1. Send an e-mail to:listserv@american.edu

2. Leave the subject line blank

3. In the body of the message, type: subscribe ICSF-L Firstname Lastname (i.e. subscribe ICSF-L Nanette Levinson)

4. Send the message, and you will receive a confirmation message, usually within a few minutes

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