Maria grew up in Farmington Hills, Michigan, and graduated from Northwestern University (IL) with a double major in Psychology and International Studies, concentrating on International Political Economy and Development and the Middle East. Maria studied Arabic, a language she wants to continue learning, has an advanced level of French, and is a native Spanish speaker. She is pursuing a Master’s Degree in International Affairs at the Bush School at Texas A&M University in the National Security and Diplomacy track.
As an undergraduate, Maria rowed on the Northwestern Crew Team all four years, and was the captain of the varsity women’s team as a junior. While on Crew, she traveled all over the country and competed in an international regatta in Zhengzhou, China. As a sophomore, Maria studied abroad in Madrid, Spain, where she attended a Spanish university and interned at an international relations think tank, conducting research on contemporary global security issues. Maria also spent a month volunteering at a school in Chimbote, Peru. After completing her Master’s, Maria hopes to work for the federal government in international or national security affairs.