Felipe Ochoa Mogrovejo, IBEI alumni 2017-18
Name and Last Name: Felipe Ochoa Mogrovejo
Master studied at IBEI: Master's in International Relations
Current working company, position and city: Coordinator of the Directorate General for Students at the Pontificia Universidad Católica del Ecuador, Quito (Ecuador).
1. Why did you choose the IBEI Master’s in International Relations?
I chose the Master’s in International Relations due to the opportunity that IBEI offered of balancing a demanding academic quality with an insightful cultural exchange. The classes at IBEI were well-structured following a peer-to-peer learning experience with teachers and colleagues, which further help students to acquire knowledge based on the theory and the practice. The recommendation of some Alumni IBEI were also an important part to take my decision.
2. What is your experience at IBEI?
My experience at IBEI could be described as a merge between a strict academic environment and the perks of living in Barcelona for a year with 140 people from at least 40 different countries around the world. To live an experience where there is a balance between learning from professors with admirable academic backgrounds and sharing interesting opinions with a variety of people with different perspectives was, without a doubt, an unforgettable experience.
3. Describe your career path since graduating from the IBEI
After working as an intern for the SocialReg Project at IBEI with Professor Andrea Bianculli, I returned to Ecuador in order to work as a Policy Consultant for one of the best universities of the country: PUCE. I was part of the team that built, monitored and evaluated the policy of admission, scholarships and students’ well-being for the university.
4. What is your professional experience (your current position, your main functions)?
Currently, I am working as the Coordinator of the Directorate General for Students at Pontificia Universidad Católica del Ecaudor. I am responsible of implementing and assessing the admission, scholarships, communication and image, and well-being policies for students. Among other tasks, I am in charge of creating policy papers which support the decisions of the Director General and assessing the implementation of the plans and actions.
5. How did the master programme prepare you for the work you're doing now?
The programme helped me to better comprehend the different approaches of IR theories in order to adapt political decisions to the focus of certain contents. In this sense, the programme provided me with the ability to discern and apply different methodological tools to build policy papers, theoretical frameworks and methods to analysis the implementation of my work’s responsibilities.
6. Is this more or less what you pictured yourself doing after the master programme?
Yes, it is. Actually, my thesis work was related to Higher Education policies in Ecuador and Latin America. Moreover, in my previous job I was the Policy Advisor for the Undersecretary General of Higher Education of Ecuador.
7. What advice would you give to current students who want to follow this career path? / Some advice to future IBEI students?
The first advice I would give to my future colleagues is to expand their minds because the field of International Relations is neither fixed nor squared. Even though it has some debateable exploration boundaries, International Relations could easily be related to other fields of knowledge such as public policy, higher education, gender theories, non-trade areas, etc. At IBEI you will find many opportunities to strengthen your academic, social and cultural backgrounds; the balance between those three is the key to a successful experience.
8. What do you miss most about IBEI?
What I miss the most is to share different perspectives to see the world politics, which vary depending on our personal experiences and geographical backgrounds. The cultural wealth I earned from my friends and fellows is an invaluable asset I will always remember and appreciate.