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Online Humanitarian Career Exploration Series

March 20, New York — The Institute of International Humanitarian Affairs introduces an online series focused on career exploration for Fordham University undergraduate and graduate students interested in social justice and humanitarian careers.

Students of all majors and minors are invited to join a 1-hour Zoom Video Conference and ask questions during the Q&A to learn about the career journeys, current work, and field experiences from humanitarian professionals and Institute of International Humanitarian Affairs Alumni.

Upcoming Hosts:

May 28, 2020 | 10:00am-11:00am Eastern Time

Liwliwa “Liw” Orcales Agbayani, Protection Delegate, International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC)

Liw began her humanitarian career in 2013 as Protection Legal Adviser in ICRC Philippine delegation where she designed and implemented systemic projects to decrease overcrowding in jails by promoting judicial guarantees and improving criminal justice actors’ response. In this role, she managed a Supreme Court of the Philippines endorsed-initiative in the city of Manila called Task Force Katarungan at Kalayaan, monitoring and promoting the timely disposal of cases for unsentenced prisoners in lengthy detention. This initiative was institutionalized by the Philippine Government in 2016. She has written an article for media outlet Rappler to highlight one of ICRC’s core activities in detention found at

Liw is currently in Maiduguri, Borno State, Nigeria where she is on her 4th month of her 12 months mission as Child Protection delegate. In her current role, Liw participates in, and contributes to the coherence of the response of ICRC Nigeria to the protection needs of minors affected by the situation of armed conflict in the Northeast, focusing on identifying and addressing child-protection issues across all other protection files in the Nigerian context.

Liw passed the 2004 Philippine Bar Examinations and has a literature degree. She has attended various international courses in project management, advocacy and policy influencing, sexual violence in armed conflict and emergencies among others. In June 2018, she received her International Diploma in Humanitarian Assistance from Fordham University as part of IDHA 52.

May 28, 2020 10:00 AM Eastern Time

Register in advance for this meeting HERE.

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.

Previous Hosts:

Nadine Kokh, Deployment Officer — Logistics Department at the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC)

Nadine has been working in the Humanitarian field for the past six years. Based in Jordan, her hometown, she worked as a Supply Chain Officer for five years then as a Purchaser for seven months. As a current Deployment Officer, Nadine goes on short missions to several countries to assist the Logistics sites in ICRC around the world. Before joining the Humanitarian field, she worked in the private sector for almost three years. She is a graduate of the Fordham University Graduate School of Arts and Sciences’ International Diploma in Humanitarian Assistance.

Giulia McPherson,
Director of Advocacy & Operations at Jesuit Refugee Service/USA

Giulia has over 15 years of experience in the humanitarian and development sectors and currently leads JRS/USA’s policy and advocacy portfolio, community engagement program to educate and mobilize advocates, and institutional operations.

Alexandra Hladick,
Specialist for Field Communications at Catholic Medical Mission Board

Alexandra graduated from Fordham College at Lincoln Center in December 2016 with a degree in International Studies focusing on women’s issues and anthropology. While at Fordham, Alexandra completed a senior thesis examining cultural and religious barriers to obstetric care in Spain and Morocco. Alexandra began as a strategy intern at CMMB in 2015 and began full time work with the organization after graduating from Fordham. CMMB’s direct giving program, known as the Angel Investor program, was piloted and continues to be led by Alexandra and has grown into an integrated project for orphans and vulnerable children (OVCs) within the greater context of CMMB’s core work. The program operates in Peru, Kenya, and Haiti and supports over one thousand children with nutrition, clean water, and education. In addition, Alexandra is responsible for bringing the stories of the women and children CMMB serves to a greater audience through digital marketing, direct mail, social media, and other platforms. Alexandra also leads CMMB’s student engagements, working with university students who are interested in getting involved in public health, advocacy, and women’s and children’s rights. She feels fortunate to work in the field of humanitarian action by bringing to light the stories of women and children around the world.

Amali Tower, Founder and Executive Director of Climate Refugees

Amali has worked the past 15 years to promote the protection of refugees and forcibly displaced persons in a variety of contexts, including in refugee resettlement, protection, evaluation and research with the UN Refugee Agency in Kenya and Jordan, various NGOs throughout Africa, Asia, the Middle East and the US, and as a sub-contractor and consultant to the US Department of State’s overseas US Refugee Admissions Program.

Amali has interviewed and resettled countless refugees, as well as worked with internally displaced persons over the years in urban and camp contexts and has strong field research and advocacy experience in human rights, humanitarian programming and conflict risk analysis.

She holds a Master of International Affairs focused in Human Rights from Columbia University’s School of International and Public Affairs, a Bachelor of Arts in International Development Studies from the University of California, Los Angeles, and an International Diploma in Humanitarian Assistance from Fordham University.

Katerina Bezgachina, Communications Director for Europe, Middle East and Africa at Habitat for Humanity International

Katerina is leading communications and marketing initiatives across Europe, Middle East and Africa, and supports housing development work in more than 24 countries. Recently, she has led Habitat for Humanity’s seasonal appeal with the Financial Times to support refugee programs in the Middle East. Katerina holds a master’s degree in International Relations and European Studies from Central European University and a master’s degree in Journalism from University of London. Prior to Habitat, Katerina worked as a reporter and editor at BBC World Service and Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty. She is a graduate of the International Diploma in Humanitarian Assistance course at Fordham University in New York City.

Emilie Chazelle, Policy Support Specialist, United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization

Emilie Chazelle is a senior programme development and management specialist, with 14 years of experience working with UN agencies and INGOs. This includes work in both humanitarian and development contexts, plus policy roles in headquarters. Prior to joining FAO Headquarters in Rome as a Policy Support Specialist, working for the strategic programme on Hunger Eradication, Food Security and Nutrition, Emilie worked as Senior Inter-Agency Coordinator for UNHCR in Turkey, leading the Basic Needs Sector Working Group, comprising of the UN and NGO partners responsible for the delivery of emergency assistance to Syrian refugees in Turkey. Prior to this, she spent three years as head of programme for the UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA) in Syria, coordinating a portfolio of over 98 multi-disciplinary projects, with an budget of over USD 160 million per year. Her previous experience includes project management, resource mobilization and policy roles with a focus on the Middle East, Central and Eastern Africa and East Asia. Emilie is a Fordham IDHA Alumni, and was part of the IDHA 30 in New York in 2010. Emilie is a French national and holds an MBA from Heriot-Watt University (UK), a Master of Arts in Middle East Politics from the University of Exeter (UK), and a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from the Institut d’Etudes Politiques in Lyon (France).

Ferdinand von Habsburg-Lothringen, United Nations Peace and Development Advisor

Ferdinand has provided advisory support to diplomatic, governmental, multilateral and international NGO leadership around developing social cohesion, peace and reconciliation strategies and programmes in South Asia and Sub-Saharan Africa in political transitions and conflict/post-conflict settings for fifteen years. He has worked eight years in humanitarian action in emergencies in Africa.

In Sudan and South Sudan between 2003 and 2018, he focused on helping governments, religious and civic platforms build opportunities and momentum for dialogue and build towards reconciliation, from grassroots to national levels within five distinctive national and local processes. He has also worked to help design programmes in peace/life skills education, governance and for humanitarian access for UNICEF, UN-OCHA, UNDP and the Department of Peacekeeping Operations. He worked with Switzerland’s Federal Department of Foreign Affairs’ Human Security Division, as senior advisor to a key South Sudanese national religious platform providing mediation between the warring parties between 2016 and 2018.

He has supported the UN Maldives Resident Coordinator and Country Team and the Department of Political and Peacebuilding Affairs in providing analysis and building entry points for conflict prevention and social cohesion after the first democratic elections from 2009 to 2011. He has since resumed the same post as UN Peace and Development Advisor in Maldives since July 2018.

Ferdinand holds a Master’s degree in International Humanitarian Action from Fordham University and a Bachelor degree from Durham University in Archaeology. He speaks a handful of languages including 3 European ones and 2 African ones.

About the IIHA
The Institute of International Humanitarian Affairs (IIHA) prepares current and future aid workers with the knowledge and skills needed to respond effectively in times of humanitarian crisis and disaster. Our courses are borne of an interdisciplinary curriculum that combines academic theory with the practical experience of seasoned humanitarian professionals. The IIHA also publishes on a wide range of humanitarian topics and regularly hosts a number of events in the New York area, including the annual Humanitarian Blockchain Summit and Design for Humanity Summit.

For more information or media inquiries, please contact: Camille Giacovas, Communications & Research Officer,



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