Global Liberal Studies (GLS) senior Natasha Babazadeh has accomplished a great deal in her four years at NYU—including making Dean’s List every year, serving as a Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholar, and holding office with Oxfam America @ NYU. But it was when she sought opportunities to forge her own mission that she established a lasting impact on the University community and earned her most prominent recognition: the 2014 President’s Service Award.
Babazadeh, who is originally from Laguna Beach, CA, chose to attend NYU largely due to the potential she saw in New York City and the University's global network. She spent her junior year in Madrid, where she volunteered with Bokatas, a homeless alleviation non-profit organization; interned with The Human Rights Association of Spain, an NGO; and traveled to more than ten different countries, drafting reports as a foreign correspondent journalist for Washington Square News. Yet even before engaging in these immersive cultural endeavors, Babazadeh was inspired to create a platform for GLS students studying away from Washington Square to share their experiences with the rest of the GLS community.
In May 2012, Babazadeh launched The Global Express, a digital magazine featuring GLS students’ own articles and photographs reflecting their local and global experiences. Her objectives were threefold: give GLS students across four continents a forum for sharing their experiences, provide prospective students with insight into the study away experience, and foster better understanding of the world for readers no matter their location. To overcome a lack of web development experience and physical distance from contributors, Babazadeh worked with supporters in the GLS faculty and staff to develop the skills needed to build The Global Express. Now she is working to establish the first print edition of the magazine.
As she looks toward graduation, Babazadeh is committed to continue serving others through her professional pursuits. While she plans to attend law school in the future, she has just begun working as an executive research associate with Immerse Global, a limited liability company that works to solve the world’s water challenges by utilizing design. Receiving the President’s Service Award has allowed Babazadeh to reflect on the legacy she will leave with GLS and the greater NYU community as she moves on from college: “I believe my most significant and positive contribution to NYU was creating The Global Express magazine,” she says. “Being able to create something of my own to leave behind surpasses any [other] experiences. I didn’t just take over someone else’s role or develop an already existing establishment, I made a contribution that ceased to exist in the first place--that is what I am most proud of and what I feel made the most significant impact on my part to NYU.”
Updated on 03/20/2015