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U of R graduate, global citizen serving Saskatchewan communities

Amanda Noubarian identifies as a world traveller, shaped by the beauty, experiences, and stories she has witnessed around the globe. Along the way, she has gathered a passion for supporting positive change wherever she is to uplift communities around the world.

Whether she was camping throughout Sub-Saharan Africa, teaching English in Mexico, exploring Spain and Morocco with her daughter, getting engaged in Croatia, or studying Indigenous cultures and traditions in northern Vietnam and Thailand as part her Bachelors in Anthropology degree from the University of Regina (U of R), Noubarian’s travels have influenced her perspectives on the world.

“I am passionate about seeing more of what this world has to offer, and determined to support positive change to uplift people globally,” said Noubarian.

The experiences she had while traveling fueled her desire to contribute to exciting policy decisions within Canada. Noubarian began searching for ways to support the international community within Canada and started volunteering at the Regina Open Door Society.

Amanda Noubarian exploring Peru.
Amanda Noubarian exploring Peru.

“Most of my prior post-secondary learning was focused on other countries, not Canada, so learning about the Canadian context has been eye-opening,” said Noubarian.  

In order to strengthen her understanding and build her skill set, Noubarian completed a  certificate in international development (2017), a master’s certificate in public policy analysis (2018), and a certificate in diversity and inclusion (2020). On June 11, she’ll add a Master of Public Administration (MPA) from the Johnson Shoyama Graduate School of Public Policy to round out her credentials. 

“The knowledge, skills and abilities gained through programs like the MPA are extremely valuable for public service professionals, and I am now much better prepared to be an agent of change that will positively impact the lives of others,” said Noubarian. 

“While pursuing  both my MPA and certificate in Diversity and Inclusion, I took on a leadership role within a Saskatchewan non-profit organization and worked as a program coordinator. These past few years have been a profound learning journey for me, as I developed and grew significantly in my knowledge, skills, aptitudes, attitudes and abilities.”

As the recipient of the Nabi and Sakina Khandaker Graduate Family Award (2021, 2021), the Garry H. Beatty Scholarship (2020), and the IPAC Doug Stevens Public Policy Graduate Student Scholarship (2019), Noubarian has an aptitude for learning in an academic environment. However, it was the connections at JSGS that allowed her to absorb even more from the experience, as she was able to build relationships with a diverse community who had a common goal.

“I loved getting to know people and being able to support one another throughout the program. I have often relied on the support of classmates, and I’ve been available to help others whenever needed. We basically formed a small community, and I have valued our connections and shared experiences,” said Noubarian. “I have felt like I’m part of something important, larger than any one of us individually. We are going to be a force for good, working to improve the quality of life for people globally.”

Noubarian advises future MPA students to take the time to connect with people between classes. “These are your future colleagues, and you will always share the connections of having been graduate students together at JSGS.”

She also recommends going through the program at a manageable pace in order to get the most out of it and ultimately become the best public servant you can be, no matter how long it takes. For Noubarian that meant integrating travel into her studies and taking care of her own well-being.

“Remember it’s not a race to finish. Go forward at a pace that’s manageable and that allows you to enjoy the unique experience of being a graduate student.”

Noubarian already sees lots of potential to apply what she has learned in her master’s program to working in communities worldwide, and she looks forward to what she will learn from future travels.

“In my opinion, the MPA has given me a strong foundation, combining my passions with the skills I need to be successful in my future goals,” said Noubarian. “It has given me confidence that I can rise to the challenge of any new role I take on. I’m looking forward to the opportunities that I can sense are on the horizon!”