Roda Kesete is an Eritrean native whose family later settled in Atlanta, Georgia, as asylum seekers when she was a child. She graduated from Emory University in 2021 where she obtained a double major in Political Science and Spanish. Roda is dedicated to finding hands-on ways to apply her study of the differences in nations’ policies, especially in human rights.
During her time at Emory, Roda was active in producing original research, in both English and Spanish. She also co-founded the Eritrean-Ethiopian Student Union and spearheaded an education initiative with a local organization providing education services to immigrants. During her free time, she enjoyed tutoring in the Atlanta area with organizations such as Emory Reads and Breakthrough Atlanta.
In her professional career, Roda is passionate about social welfare policies and the intersection of politics and economics in driving sustainable social welfare initiatives. During her time at Emory, her degree concentration focused on analyzing social policies through a comparative lense and learning from cross-cultural contexts on best practices. Her interests led her to work in the government at organizations such as the State Department, in the Office of Population, Refugees, and Migration and in the Global Affairs Division of the Economics Bureau for Embassy Beijing. She has also worked in the Senate with the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation and in the office of Senator Ossoff, where she worked on a broad range of topics
spanning student debt relief, clean energy, and agriculture policy.
Most recently, Roda completed her Masters from Tsinghua University in Beijing, China as a Schwarzman scholar. At the end of her program, Roda presented her thesis analyzing the manner in which different social welfare conditions are impacting social mobility outcomes for
women in various Chinese industries.
In the future, Roda hopes to use her legal degree to work in an international organization, utilizing the intersection of politics and economics to drive human rights and development initiatives.
In her free time, Roda satisfies her love for language learning by watching foreign language television. She also enjoys baking and spending time with her dog.