Mary Thibodeau joined ABA ROLI’s Africa Division in October 2023. She graduated magna cum laude from Elon University in May 2022 with a B.A. in both International & Global Studies: Africa and Political Science, with a minor in French. During her studies she studied abroad in Rwanda on a program focused on Post-Genocide Restoration and Peacebuilding. She published the findings from her ethnographic study she conducted while in Rwanda, entitled Analyzing the Social Impact of Gacaca Courts in the Reconciliation Process in Rwanda. In addition to this research, she conducted a 3-year research project on the impacts of reconciliation programs in schools and communities in post-genocide Rwanda.
She recently completed her M.A. in Humanitarian Assistance and Crisis Management through the School of International Training. Conducted fully abroad, Mary studied in Jordan, Turkey, and Serbia, spending half her time in classes and the other half visiting refugee camps and meeting with local organizations to learn their operations. Over the summer, Mary worked full-time in French for a refugee services organization in Tangier, Morocco, where she assisted their grants department, collected and organized data on activities with refugees, and assisted and participated in workshops amongst African refugee service providers. Concurrently, she worked on her thesis reviewing Tanzanian and international organization’s water and sanitation policies/standards through a decolonized perspective. The research was later published, entitled Decolonizing WASH (Water and Sanitation Hygiene) Practices Between National Policies & International Standards: A Case Study in Tanzania.