Category: News, Student Spotlight

Title: Student Spotlight: Chris Murphy (MASIA ’24)

Chris Murphy is a second-year Master of Arts in Asian Studies student from Michigan. Before MASIA he attended Yenching Academy at Peking University and has worked in both China and Germany. While in MASIA, he has worked as a China Analyst in the Indo-Pacific Program at the German Marshall Fund of the United States. 


Why did you choose to pursue a graduate degree in Asian Studies at the SFS?

I explored a few other graduate programs, but for me Robert [Robert Lyons; Asian Studies Program Director of Academic Programs & Operations] was a defining factor. Something I also appreciate about the SFS is that the education you receive here is very practical. Also, being in D.C. surrounded by think tanks and consultancies exposes you to so many opportunities for professional and personal growth. Studying at Georgetown, I had the chance to sharpen my analytical skills and publish an article on Foreign Policy. The network and growth opportunities here are truly priceless. 


What has been your favorite class you’ve taken while here?

I would have to choose between either Professor Sheila Smith’s seminar on Asia’s Nationalisms or Professor Medeiros’s class on Fundamental Dynamics of U.S.-China Relations. Asia’s Nationalisms helped me rethink how I approached the concept of nationalism and confront my presupposed notions of it. Professor Medeiros’s class is really good because it pushes you, in a very practical sense, to be ready for the job market. He is a very good professor and holds all of his students accountable to acquiring the skills and confidence necessary to take on the market in D.C.   


What are you looking forward to this semester? 

From a personal perspective, I’m very excited. MASIA is super intensive during the first year, but the second year is really about you. What I’m looking forward to this semester is transitioning, getting ready to enter the workforce in a gentle, relaxed way. I think the program really set me up to do that and I’m looking forward to fully embracing the opportunities of the city post graduation.


What are you hoping to do with your degree? 

I’m still in the process of finalizing that, but I hope to continue studying China and positively shape U.S.-China relations . 


What’s been your favorite part of the MASIA experience? 

My favorite part of my MASIA experience has been how supportive my peers and professors are. Everyone is extremely endearing and caring. It’s a safe environment to grow in – both professionally and personally.


What is your favorite part about Georgetown or D.C. as a whole?

Everyone that I talk to is super driven to change the world around them and has a story. Coming from the Midwest where life is much more slow-paced, witnessing people from all walks of life pursue their dreams with everything in them has been very inspiring. D.C. is truly the place to be.


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