Master of global affairs students awarded Hesburgh and Offenheiser Fellowships

Author: Renée LaReau

The Keough School of Global Affairs has awarded the Hesburgh Global Fellowship to María José Daza Bohórquez and the Raymond C. Offenheiser Fellowship to Margaret Adomako. Daza and Adomako, from Colombia and Ghana, respectively, are members of the Master of Global Affairs Class of 2021. Created in 2019, the Hesburgh and Offenheiser fellowships subsidize postgraduate employment with organizations that foster human dignity and equality.

While supported by the Hesburgh Fellowship, Daza will work in Bogotá, Colombia, for the Institute for Integrated Transitions (IFIT). Headquartered in Barcelona with a global network of practitioners and brain trusts, IFIT helps fragile and conflict-affected states achieve more inclusive negotiations and sustainable transitions out of war, crisis, or authoritarianism. 

“I’m honored to begin work for an organization that shares generously its expertise in political transitions and shares my values of inclusiveness and multidisciplinarity,” said Daza, who earned a concentration in international peace studies as part of her master of global affairs. “In my two years in the MGA program, I have come to realize that no peacebuilding effort is complete if it is not comprehensive and inclusive.”

Daza will contribute to IFIT’s peacebuilding and justice work in Colombia, Mexico, and Venezuela, and also will support a broader research agenda aimed at reshaping how political transitions are addressed globally.

As a Notre Dame master of global affairs student, Daza served as a research intern at the Keough School’s Kroc Institute for International Peace Studies and its Peace Accords Matrix. The Kroc Institute, a leading center for the study of the causes of violent conflict and strategies for sustainable peace, administers both the international peace studies concentration and the Hesburgh Fellowship. As a Kroc intern, Daza edited national and regional status reports of the 2016 peace agreement implementation in Colombia and designed a storytelling project that chronicles the impact of the peace agreement on daily life. She also served as a graduate consultant for the Meyer Business on the Frontlines program, an initiative of Notre Dame’s Mendoza College of Business that utilizes the dynamic skills of business to solve global challenges. 

Before coming to Notre Dame, Daza worked for the Swedish International Development Agency in Bogotá, assisting with the implementation of Colombia’s peace agreement. She holds a bachelor’s degree in public affairs and international relations from Universidad Externado in Bogotá.

Named for the late Notre Dame President Emeritus Rev. Theodore M. Hesburgh, C.S.C., the Hesburgh Fellowship provides funding for a graduate of the Master of Global Affairs program to pursue work focused on peace, justice, development, or other related fields. 

Offenheiser Fellowship

As the recipient of the Offenheiser Fellowship, Margaret Adomako will join the humanitarian policy and advocacy unit at Oxfam America in Washington, DC. Her work will focus on bolstering US government support for the prevention of and response to humanitarian crises.

 “Oxfam’s work in ending poverty is crucial to the peace and security of nations,” said Adomako, who earned a concentration in international peace studies as part of her master of global affairs. “Having the opportunity to work with an organization that fights inequality and poverty as a means of lessening the harms caused by conflict aligns well with my values, expertise, and career aspirations.” 

As a master of global affairs student, Adomako interned with the Stimson Center, a Washington, DC-based think tank that aims to enhance international peace and security through analysis and outreach, and also for the Alliance for Peacebuilding, a coalition of organizations in 181 countries focused on ending violent conflict and building sustainable peace. She also served as a research assistant for the Keough School’s Pulte Institute for Global Development, where she contributed to the USAID Evidence Gap Map Project by coding data on private sector engagement.

Before coming to Notre Dame, Adomako worked at the Kofi Annan International Peacekeeping Training Centre, where she supported West African peacekeepers. She also has conducted research on post-conflict reconstruction in Côte d’Ivoire and conflict between farmers and herders in Ghana. A former field officer for the Environmental Protection Agency of Ghana, she holds a bachelor’s degree in French and linguistics from the University of Ghana-Legon.

The Offenheiser Fellowship was created in honor of Ray Offenheiser, director of the Keough School’s Pulte Institute for Global Development and professor of the practice. Before coming to Notre Dame, Offenheiser served for 20 years as president of Oxfam America. The Offenheiser Fellowship is awarded to eligible Keough School graduate students following the completion of their master of global affairs degree. Recipients work for one year at Oxfam’s offices in Boston or Washington, DC.

The Keough School’s Master of Global Affairs program prepares students for skilled, effective leadership and careers in government, nongovernmental and civil society organizations, and the private sector. The program integrates rigorous coursework, close engagement with policymakers, multi-disciplinary faculty and students from around the world, and extended field work around the globe.