Welcome to my site! My name is Kayla and I was born and raised in Issaquah, Washington – a town 20 miles east of Seattle, Washington. I currently reside in Washington, DC where I am pursuing my Master of Arts in International Economics and International Relations with a concentration in Latin American Studies and a specialization in Emerging Markets from Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS).
During my senior year in high school, I was fortunate enough to be given the opportunity to spend three weeks in Guatemala with Global Partnerships, a nonprofit microcredit organization that invests in high-impact microfinance institutions to encourage economic growth and enhance the lives of those in poverty. I was exposed to the cultural and political diversity of Guatemala first hand. This rare insight to the genuine people and rich history of the region, and consequently Latin America, truly inspired me to pursue an education and a career in international development. This trip truly changed my trajectory – academically, professionally and personally.
Parts academic, curiosity, and effrontery, in the fall of 2006, I decided to move across the country to attend the Pennsylvania State University (PSU). Since my experience in Guatemala, I have always had the urge to travel and explore; studying abroad was a “no brainer.” During my sophomore year, I lived with a Spanish family in Sevilla, Spain, and traveled to more than 15 countries across Western and Eastern Europe. Seeing new cultures, meeting new people, and learning about their identities and histories truly brings me great joy. For that reason, I decided to continue living in Spain after completing my studies at the Universidad de Sevilla. During the summer of 2009, I moved to Barcelona to intern at The SiD Moskitia Foundation. It is the nonprofit’s mission to maintain the cultural integrity of the Honduran village of La Moksitia while developing the local economy through education reform; health and sanitation projects; and infrastructure improvement. It was a truly unique, global perspective: an American, living in Spain (Cataluña), remotely working with a village in Honduras.
After graduation from PSU with bachelor of the arts degrees in both International Politics and Spanish, I moved to the Washington, DC metro area. Every day is a new and exciting challenge, which must always be met with critical thinking skills, effective communication and humor. This small, yet robust, town is inundated with intelligence, motivation, and opportunity. After living in the area for more than five years, I am still roaming new museums and discovering amazing parts of town.
Please feel free to contact me should you have any questions!