MGPS alumna handles risk communication efforts in Sudan for UN agency | LBJ School of Public Affairs | The University of Texas at Austin

Amy Kalmbach (MGPS '13) has taken her passion for international development policy to Africa and the International Organization for Migration (IOM) — the United Nations' migration agency. She recently became the head of Sub-Office for the IOM's Abyei Administrative Area, representing both the IOM Sudan and IOM South Sudan offices.

IOM Abyei activities range from peacebuilding and protection to water, sanitation and hygiene, and it is currently focused on risk communications and other activities to reduce the spread of COVID-19. Working with a team of fellow students on a Policy Research Project to develop a Sudan/South Sudan crisis simulation for the Army War College sparked Kalmbach's interest in Abyei when she was at the LBJ School.

"In the field of humanitarian work, your team, environment and objectives are dynamic," Kalmbach said. "You have to be flexible, and learn to work on new problem sets and with new partners frequently. The LBJ school's opportunities for practical, hands-on learning prepared me well for the dynamism necessary in conflict and post-conflict aid work. In addition, the LBJ school's collaborative focus strengthened my skills in working with different teams and team members with diverse experiences and capacities."


"The LBJ school's opportunities for practical, hands-on learning prepared me well for the dynamism necessary in conflict and post-conflict aid work." —Amy Kalmbach (MGPS '13)

Previously, Kalmbach worked the IOM Somalia Mission, serving as grants manager for the Somalia Stabilization Initiative. She has worked in West Africa, Southeast Asia and with IOM in Washington, DC. She holds a bachelor's degree in political science and French, concentrating on community stabilization and peacebuilding, human rights, capacity building and training, program development, and community and government engagement.

Graduates from the Master of Global Policy program work across the globe. MGPS alums currently serve at international organizations including the United Nations in Geneva or the Asian Development Bank in Manila; at U.S. government offices such as the U.S. embassies to Greece or NATO or the U.S. Trade and Development Agency; at foreign government bodies such as the German Parliament; at private firms like McKinsey or Deloitte; at nongovernmental organizations, like the World Wildlife Fund or the Open Society Justice Initiative; and at think tanks and research organizations including the Carnegie Council and the Center for Strategic and International Studies.

Follow Kalmbach's work on Twitter.