Georgetown MBAs Receive Fulbright Awards

Picture of Tomas Valdes (MBA’21) and Tristan Schnader (MBA’21)

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Two recent Georgetown McDonough MBA graduates, Tomas Valdes (MBA’21) and Tristan Schnader (MBA’21), received placement in the distinguished Fulbright U.S. Student Program to pursue their research.

Georgetown produced more U.S. Fulbright student awardees for 2020-2021 than any other college or university in the country for the second year in a row. The award is given to current or recently graduated students to conduct research or teach in foreign countries. The Fulbright U.S. Student Program provides grants for individually designed study/research projects or for English teaching assistant programs.  

Valdes will research the economic implications of United Arab Emirates (UAE) government policy responses to crises. Contemporary scholarly discussions around UAE responses to upheavals use a single crisis as the unit of analysis and fall short of providing holistic insights for defining best practices that achieve desirable economic outcomes independent of the origins of each crisis. His research will bridge this gap by investigating how metrics used to measure the health of the Emirati economy fared following government responses to multiple crises, emphasizing the Great Recession and COVID-19 pandemic.

“In identifying dependencies and risks that arise when implementing any economic policy during a crisis, I intend to leverage a quantitative approach I’ve learned at Georgetown that includes statistical modeling and multiple regression analyses,” said Valdes. “My long-term goal builds upon my linguistic and professional skills to help governments and corporations develop innovative ways to operate around the world with an understanding of national culture and language; to employ my global experiences to aid local efforts.” 

Schnader’s research will critically examine past conservation finance investment projects in Brazil, particularly those sourced from development finance institutions and the public sector. These investments are based around the concept that environmental, social, and financial returns align, amounting to billions of dollars invested year over year. The goal of his research is to measure the metrics of success around past conservation finance projects, looking in-depth at various stakeholder groups and sub-groups.

“When I decided to attend McDonough, it was predicated on my conviction that the global conservation community cannot achieve its goals without tangibly valuing nature in ways that the public and private sectors can understand,” said Schnader. “As part of this, I see Fulbright as an extension of that education and as a unique opportunity to contribute to a subfield of conservation that is continuously refining itself.”