Giving = Receiving: Alumna Federica Nappa
Federica Nappa is a JCU alumna from Rome who graduated with a major in International Affairs and a minor in Communications in December 2018. Federica is currently an intern in the Immigration Office at John Cabot University, and she dreams to keep helping people while working in an international environment.
How’s life after graduation?
In December 2018, I graduated with a major in International Affairs and a minor in Communications. After three years at JCU, I feel like I have accomplished something that I had been dreaming about since I was a kid. I am a very organized person, so my post-graduation life is as I expected it to be; I am currently an intern for the Immigration Office at JCU, where I have the chance to get to know and help students from all over the world. As a graduate, I started feeling like an “adult.” I want to take on more responsibilities and I am ready to challenge myself.
What brought you to JCU?
Since middle school, I have always dreamed about the United States. I wanted to live and study there, so I started spending my summers during high school in different colleges around the US; first New York, then San Francisco. The more I visited, the more I fell in love with the US. However, my last year of high school I realized that moving permanently to the US wasn’t as easy as I thought. I still remember the day I found out about JCU. It was a dream come true: I could study in the “American way” while staying close to my family and friends. JCU is the perfect compromise between my comfort zone and the unknown. In my case, studying at JCU made me even more curious to explore the world.
What are your plans for the immediate future?
Right now, I am exactly where I want to be. I am working for the Immigration Office at JCU, which I consider my “second home.” I am surrounded by my friends and have a very active role within the JCU community. I am helping international students navigate Italian bureaucracy and I am looking forward to making their stay in Rome better. Helping other people is the main reason that I chose to study International Affairs. My biggest goal in life is to help my community, and with this internship, I have the chance to give back to the JCU community everything it offered me in the past three years.
Tell us about your independent study course with Professor Isabella Clough Marinaro.
In Spring 2018, I had the chance to study the active role that Cosa Nostra (the Sicilian Mafia) has in the trafficking of Nigerian women across the Mediterranean. Professor Clough Marinaro helped me build a syllabus and solid research to base my project on. The independent study course was probably the best class I ever took at JCU. I learned so many new tools that I am definitely going to apply in both my job and future education. I developed my academic research skills while focusing on a topic that is extremely dear to me. Besides really diving into the topic and understanding the complex mechanisms of international migration and criminal theories, the best part of my independent study was definitely Professor Clough Marinaro. She was an inspiration and pushed me to overcome my limits. I am extremely grateful to have had this opportunity, and encourage every student, whether degree seeker or study abroad, to take on this challenge.
What is your ultimate career goal?
My ultimate career goal would be to keep helping people. I would love to work in an international environment protecting and enforcing human rights. My job at the Immigration Office is becoming pivotal in this because I am learning new things every day and I am really putting myself out there for others. I believe that my time at JCU has really prepared me for the future. I had the chance to study what I love and to hone my skills in it.
Do you have any advice for graduating students?
My advice for graduating students is to keep on grinding. The last year or last semester are usually the toughest, sleep is lacking and things seem overwhelming, but you will survive! If you are planning to apply to graduate school, work on your applications and ask professors to write you recommendation letters. If you want to apply for a job, revise your resume and cover letter. Take advantage of the services that JCU offers to seniors, from the Library to the Career Services Office. Find the right balance, which also includes breaks and self-care! Your final thesis/project will definitely benefit from your physical and mental health.
Try to be as involved as you can within the JCU Community. Join a club, take elective courses and have lunch at the Tiber Cafe. You will collect beautiful memories that you will cherish forever. For me, JCU is much more than my alma mater; it is my home and my family.