hsac iNTERNS


Desmian Alexander

Education

Undergraduate: Fisk University, Bachelor of Arts, English and Spanish
Graduate: University of Southern California, Master of Public Policy/Master of Planning

Background

Hometown: Florence, NJ
Personal/Professional Experiences: Watching the environmental, social, and economic effects of Hurricane Katrina drove my interest in environmentalism, disaster management, and poverty alleviation. After graduating from Fisk University, I volunteered for two years with the American Red Cross in San Antonio on their Disaster Action Team. My career experience was mostly focused on hunger and poverty, working as an AmeriCorps VISTA, and for organizations like the Texas Hunger Initiative and the San Antonio Food Bank.  My interest in homeland security/emergency management revolves around treating climate change as the true threat to national security that it represents, and designing communities/cities with that in mind. 

Career Goals

I would like to be the Chief Resilience Officer of a major US city. 


Leigh Jacobson

Education

Leigh recently graduated with an MA in Counter-terrorism & Homeland Security from The Interdisciplinary Center (IDC), Herzliya, Israel with a special certificate in Cyber-terrorism Studies. Previously, she completed both a BA in International Relations (with a minor in Global Communications) and a MA in Public Diplomacy within four years at the University of Southern California (USC) under a full-tuition merit Trustee Scholarship. During her time at USC, she also studied abroad for a semester at the Department of War Studies at King’s College, London, with a USC Gold Family Fellowship, and did a Maymester abroad at Singapore Management University (SMU) with a USC SOAR grant.

Background

Leigh is a dual U.S/Israeli citizen with a lifelong passion for physical security and public safety. In tandem with her most recent MA in Israel, Leigh worked as a Threat Analysis/Terror Simulations Intern at the Israeli think tank: The International Institute for Counter-terrorism (ICT). There, she actively collected and analyzed large amounts of open-source intelligence from across the web and social media in order to formulate threat assessments for potential Los Angeles terror targets, and her research was selected as the showcase Law Enforcement & Policing presentation/simulation for international law enforcement officials at the annual ICT World Summit on Counter-terrorism in September 2017. 

Career Goals

Ten years from now Leigh hopes to be working on physical threat assessments and public safety procedures for the 2028 Olympics to be held in Los Angeles. 


Carlos Reyes-Andrade

Education

Carlos is currently pursuing a Master of Science in Geographic Information Science (M.Sc. GIS) at California State University, Northridge (CSUN). He received his Bachelor of Arts in Geography at CSUN as well.

Background

Prior to coming to HSAC, Carlos worked at The Walt Disney Company’s Global Security Communications Center (GSCC), where he was exposed to the field of global security and crisis management. At the GSCC, he was responsible for various mapping projects such as mapping fixed and temporary Disney assets around the world. Additionally, he gained applicable knowledge in 24/7 global monitoring and tactical threat analysis for a global company. 

Career Goals

Carlos hopes to work for FEMA to support its geographic information system (GIS) department.  


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Haley Seibel

Education

Haley is currently pursuing a Master of Public Administration (MPA) in Non-Profit Sector Management at California State University, Northridge. She earned her Bachelor of Arts in Communication Studies at the UCLA, where she took courses in public health, law, and public policy relating to global terrorism. 

Background

Recently, Haley completed a term of service as an AmeriCorps Member with the American Red Cross, where she was exposed to the field of emergency management and developed a passion for the humanitarian aspect of public safety and community resiliency. In this position, she delivered key emergency preparedness programs and responded to local disasters in Los Angeles, Inyo, and Mono Counties. Previously, she worked as a Development and Outreach Intern with Human Rights Watch. 

Career Goals

Haley plans to attend law school upon the completion of her MPA. 


Jinyi Zhu

Education

Jinyi is currently working toward a Master of Public Administration at the Sol Price School of Public Policy at the University of Southern California. 

Background

Jinyi comes from Shanghai, China. After earning her bachelor's degree of Finance at Shanghai Jiao Tong University she decided to pursue a Master of Public Administration in the United States.

Her previous experiences have contributed toward a life-long passion of devoting herself to solving social problems, especially enhancing people's living conditions and their sense of security. As an undergraduate, Jinyi served as an intern at the Poverty Alleviation Office of the Chinese central government, as well as co-founded a charity which aimed to narrow the educational gap between rural and urban areas in China.

Jinyi believes that homeland security is one of the most pressing issues in Los Angeles and wants to be able to contribute to the field. 

Career Goals

Ten years from now Jinyi hopes to still be in the Greater Los Angeles region in a leadership role in local government, concentrating in either emergency management or preventing ideologically-motivated violence/terrorism. 


Former Interns

Mara Burger

Education

MPA Candidate, University of Southern California, Sol Price School of Public Policy; BA in Psychology and Legal Studies, University of California, Santa Cruz

Background

Mara Burger is a Masters of Public Administration candidate and Dean's Merit Scholar in the 2018 cohort at the USC Sol Price School of Public Policy. Mara's academic and professional areas of interest primarily focus on issues of public safety and security. Currently, Mara serves as a Research Fellow for the City of Los Angeles in Mayor Eric Garcetti's Office of Public Safety where she supports efforts to develop strategies against hate, bias, and violence caused by extremism. Previously, she has worked as a research intern for the Los Angeles County Human Relations Commission on matters concerning police training, implicit bias, and police-community relations. 

Prior to pursuing her Masters, Mara served as the Assistant Director and Program Manager for the Leadership Academy at the Center for Strategic and International Studies, a foreign policy and national security think tank in Washington, DC. In her personal time, Mara serves as the Chief Operating Officer for I Am Your Protector (IAYP), a volunteer-run international non-profit organization that fights hate and xenophobia. 

Career Goals

Ten years from now I hope to still be in the Great Los Angeles region, entering a
leadership role in local government, either in an emergency management office or in a role that works to respond to or prevent ideologically-motivated violence/terrorism. 


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HALEY BARTOSIK

Education

Haley received her BS in Political Science, and Bachelor of Science in Justice Studies from Arizona State University. She is currently a Master of Public Policy student at the University of Southern California (USC), entering her second year this coming fall. Haley is also working on a Certificate of Sustainable Policy and Planning during her time at USC.

Background

Haley is originally from Chicago, IL, but grew up primarily in Phoenix, AZ. In the past, she has been an intern in Washington, D.C. for a local Congresswoman and spent six months living in Dublin, Ireland as an exchange student studying Irish law and politics. Her interests in homeland security and public safety emerged from growing technology and progress within the field, in combination with the ability it has to make significant, visible impacts on communities. 

Career Goals

As a current policy student, Haley hopes to be making a difference within the policy field within the next 10 years. Her interests lie in homeland security and sustainability, and she hopes to be working on solutions and progress within these areas throughout her career.