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I am a young scholar interested in non-coercive means of influence in international relations. In particular, I examine the role of (higher) education in creating caches of soft power in order to help governments achieve their respective foreign policy goals. Russia, China, and Kazakhstan are the three countries most central to my research, and I have completed at least a second-year course on the Russian, Chinese, and Kazakh languages to facilitate my work.


Doctoral studies in Political Science at Indiana University: I am currently pursuing a doctoral degree with international relations as my primary sub-field.


Intensive summer course in Russian at Irkutsk State University (summer 2018)

Master’s degree in Russian, East European, & Eurasian Studies from the University of Kansas: I graduated in 2018 with a 3.95 GPA after defending my capstone project, “Axes of Russia-China Relations in the Russian Far East,” with honors.

Bachelor’s degree in Political Science from Texas Tech University: I graduated summa cum laude in 2013 with a 4.0 GPA.

Blog Posts


    Higher education partnership networks in Kazakhstan

    Russia-China relations in the Russian Far East

    Motives for Chinese students studying abroad in Irkutsk

    The soft power potential of diplomatic academies

    National hockey teams and domestic underdevelopment

    Upcoming Talks and Conferences

    “International Partnerships within Kazakhstan’s Higher Education System” to be delivered on November 12, 2022 in Chicago at the in-person segment of the ASEEES Annual Convention.


    Association for Slavic, East European, & Eurasian Studies

    International Studies Association

    John C. Stanko

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    Active 7 months, 4 weeks ago