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From: Sioux Falls, S. D.
Zach Avre majors in geography, with a minor in political science and a concentration in urban studies. That combination has given him a lens through which he can see “how policy, economics and geography condition factors that go on in cities.” A way to look at racial segregation, Avre said, or the foreclosure crisis. Avre’s passion is housing, and he is interested in exploring the ways organizations such as the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, “which have a very negative connotation and image ... might be more responsive to the people they serve.” Avre plans to defer grad school for a year or two to work “at the ground level, with the people who rely upon those types of services ... so that if I’m a policymaker 10, 15 years down the line, I have that experience.”
College of St. Benedict
From: Humboldt, S.D.
Major: Political Science, History
Rachel Mullin’s father is a professor, so she grew up believing in “the power of education.” That tenet deepened in college, when she taught English to kindergartners and sixth-graders in rural China and volunteered at a city school. “The resource gap between the two schools was stark.” The rural classroom was packed, with used supplies, while the city school offered small class sizes and brand-new books. That and other international experiences have Mullin hoping to go into international development, with a focus on education. She hopes to earn a master’s degree at the Johns Hopkins School for Advanced International Studies. But first, she’s applying for the Peace Corps. “I want an opportunity to not delve straight back into education, to experience something outside of it,” Mullin said. Those years could challenge her plans, she said, “or they could strengthen that desire.”
Jenna Ross • 612-673-7168