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Undergraduate Convocation Student Speaker

Shakia MIchelle Rose

BS, Social Sciences, SPS ‘20

Division of Applied Undergraduate Studies

Shakia is a military veteran who completed her undergraduate degree at SPS while working as content management and data collection lead for NATO’s intelligence directorate in Afghanistan and as the liaison for the military’s intelligence data entry team in Fort Gordon, Georgia. In this role, Shakia plays a vital role in disseminating daily war metrics that are currently aiding in the Afghanistan Peace Talks.

Shakia has dedicated over 11 years to supporting the US Government’s effort to end the war on terrorism. She first joined the military when she was 17 years old and had to quickly learn how to follow orders, a challenge for many young people.

Despite being a world away from New York City, Shakia has had a rich and fulfilling academic experience at SPS.  She described her experience this way: “Traveling through a war zone while taking three courses is overwhelming,” she says, “but SPS has made my experience returning to school an unforgettable journey. Outside of traveling within Afghanistan, I have also been able to meet class requirements in the UAE, Brazil, Maldives, Germany, and India. Without the sophistication of SPS’s online learning environment, I don’t know if I would have had as much success.”

Although Shakia has not held any leadership positions while pursuing her degree, she has nonetheless had the opportunity to use her skills to take care of others.  As President and Vice President of Operation Outreach N.KAIA, Kabul, Afghanistan, Shakia coordinated humanitarian missions to refugee camps, orphanages, education center, day care centers and hospitals. Among other leadership opportunities, she also served as Church Youth Leader and Mentor.

Shakia describes herself as a leader who “displays empathy and possesses a character that colleagues feel comfortable approaching.” She demonstrates positivity with the hope that her energy will influence the lives of every person she meets.