From JCU to Oxford University: Alumnus Tommaso Trillò

Tommaso Trillò

Tommaso Trillò

Tommaso Trillò, who graduated from JCU in December 2013 with a major in Political Science, is currently working as a Research Assistant at the Budapest Centre for International Prevention of Genocide and Mass Atrocities. Tommaso, who is from Rome, will begin working on a Master’s degree in Migration Studies at Oxford University next fall.

Professor Isabella Clough Marinaro had this to say about Tommaso: “Tommaso’s passion for research has made him truly inspiring for other students but also for professors like me who have had the pleasure of working with him. We have good reason to be proud of him and I wish him all the best for the stellar career that surely awaits him.”

Read the interview with Tommaso:

What brought you to John Cabot University?
After completing three semesters of college in the U.S., I decided to move back to Rome. I chose John Cabot in order to keep my credits and stay in an American yet international setting.

How did you find your passion for political science?
I originally wanted to be a journalist but then I realized that I was truly interested in research and academia. So at the end of my junior year I decided that I wanted to prepare for graduate school and a deeper study of political science. Through JCU’s Career Services Center, I was able to obtain an internship at The Rosselli Foundation, a very important public policy think tank and research center.

Did any professors at JCU help you with your decision?
The professor who had the biggest impact on my academic life is Professor Isabella Clough Marinaro. She helped me with research proposals, my application to Oxford, and the preparation of my thesis. Professor Luigi Sensi is the professor with whom I’ve taken the most classes and he was the first reader of my thesis on women’s right to asylum. He really helped me make the best of my thesis experience. Professor Pamela Harris was my second reader and also gave me a lot of guidance in my career at John Cabot.

How did you get the research assistant position at the Budapest Centre?
During my last semester at JCU, I did an internship at JCU’s Guarini Institute for Public Affairs. It was through Professor Federigo Argentieri, Director of the Guarini Institute, that I met Prof. Enzo Maria Le Fevre Cervini, Director of Research at the Budapest Centre. I am very grateful to Prof. Argentieri for providing this important contribution to my professional development.

Can you tell us about your recent trip to Washington DC and the research behind that?
I went to Washington with the Budapest Centre for a World Bank forum on April 9 entitled “The Role of Development Agencies in Preventing Mass Atrocities.” My research provided the background for the speech delivered by Prof. Le Fevre. The focus of the forum was on mainstreaming mass atrocity prevention in development agencies and bilateral donors.

What does mainstreaming mass atrocity prevention in development mean?
In order to have upstream prevention of genocide, you have to empower societies that are at risk. So when you actually decide to go somewhere in Africa or Southeast Asia or in Latin America to bring development aid, you have to examine important data. Factors like widespread inequality in education or high reliance on natural resources all need to be considered when you bring development aid.

Tell us about what you will be studying at Oxford.
I will be doing Migration Studies, which is part of my thesis. But since I really like my current position at the Budapest Centre and my work on genocide prevention, I hope to continue to research mass violence and migration so I can combine my current research and my thesis.

Describe your experience at John Cabot.
John Cabot provided me with an international setting and a challenging yet friendly environment in which I gathered strength to pursue my goals in life.