Anne Fikes, class of 2013, Heads to Oxford

Written by Laura Paskin
June 24, 2014

Anne Fikes travels to Oxford University to continue her studies in comparative social policy. The 2013 alum who majored in French and International Studies developed her interest in social policy while studying abroad during her junior year.

“I was in France during the presidential election,” she recalled. “I found it fascinating to talk to people about their experiences and understand their thinking as political rhetoric heated up.”

As a senior in a comparative policy course taught by Political Science Professor Bradley Scharf, Fikes compared social policy issues between the United States and Europe. The class homed in the socio-cultural, historical, and political factors involved in current policy controversies, including immigration, education, and health care.

“It was the hardest class I took at SU but my favorite. I became more and more interested in the way policy structures affect people’s lives and why countries make the policy choices they do,” she said.

After graduation, Fikes spent a year in France as an English teaching assistant in classes for high school students and adults in Strasbourg. During a visit with a former classmate in Oxford, she sat in on a class and met with a member of the faculty.  She decided to apply and starts in the Master in Comparative Social Policy program in September.   

“My experiences at Seattle U were useful in ways I did not expect,” “she said. “My coursework on campus and my time in France exposed me to new ideas, new cultures, new ways of thinking about things. It helped me grow into the person I am today and the career I want to have.”

The College of Arts and Sciences, the largest college in Seattle University, offers 41 undergraduate major degrees, 36 minors, and 6 master's degrees.