When she moved to Michigan from Cairo, Egypt, at age 14, Magy Shenouda already had 10 years of English lessons under her belt. Still, learning the nuances of the language was one of the first challenges she faced in her new country.
“There wasn’t a major language barrier—I had studied English in school since kindergarten,” she said. “It was mostly the different terms and sayings in American culture that I had to get used to.”
But she quickly settled in and adjusted to her new environment and a new educational system. This Saturday, she’ll begin a new chapter as she graduates from UM-Dearborn with dual majors in political science and international studies, along with focuses in business administration and French.
Shenouda said she has always had an interest in political science and international studies; she remembers her father constantly talking politics with the family. Her interest grew at UM-Dearborn as she gained hands-on experience in the field.
This past summer, Shenouda completed an internship at the National Council on U.S.-Arab Relations in Washington, D.C.—an opportunity she learned about through her involvement with UM-Dearborn’s Model Arab League. Through the National Council on U.S.-Arab Relations, Shenouda was placed as a research intern at the US-Qatar Business Council where she ran the council’s social media, researched the bilateral relationship between the U.S. and Qatar and assisted in partner identification for clients. While in D.C., Shenouda visited CIA headquarters, the Supreme Court, the U.S. Department of State and Capitol Hill among other sites.
“What I learned most from D.C. is that early experiences and internships will play a major role in everything that follows,” she said. “It’s important to do the best job possible at your internship because that’s what will help you get jobs later on and will help advance your career.”
Currently, Shenouda is an intern at the Michigan Attorney General’s Detroit office, where she assists in responding to citizen inquiries regarding civil rights and attends court arguments with Assistant Attorney General Ron Robinson.
On campus, joining clubs and getting more involved helped Shenouda make connections and create long-lasting relationships. She’s a member of the Honors Program and the Delta Phi Epsilon social sorority and a previous member of Student Government. She’s also held several leadership positions in these organizations.
“The people I’ve met—my friends, professors and even the people I’ve interacted with at UM-Dearborn—have helped me become a better person, both academically and personally,” she said. “And the leadership positions I’ve had have helped me gain experience and have allowed me to become more knowledgeable with fundraising, event planning and leadership in general,” she said.
Following graduation, Shenouda has her eyes set on the nation’s capital.
“I would like to move to D.C. and work in international business,” she said. “I think it’s something I’d be good at it because I have experience living within different cultures and working in international marketing. I have a passion for traveling and learning different languages and business cultures.”