I’m Assistant Director of the Graduate Program in International Studies (GPIS) at Old Dominion University, where I also teach in the Department of Political Science and Geography. I earned my PhD in political science from the University of Kentucky (2020). My primary research focuses on states’ preference formation, the effects of national identities and mobilization on states’ foreign policy and security choices, and the politics of the post-Soviet region. Currently, I’m working on a book manuscript based on my dissertation: Why Weak States Balance: National Mobilization and the Security Strategies of Post-Soviet States.

I earned my master’s degree in International Peace Studies from the University of Notre Dame. My Master’s thesis focused on the psychology of terrorism, and my research on “Groupthink and Terrorist Radicalization” has been published in the journal Terrorism and Political Violence. Another stream of my research focuses on women's rights and women in politics. I earned a REEEC Research Fellowship at the Russian, East European, and Eurasian Center at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 2019, won the Emerging Global Scholar Award from the University of Kentucky in 2018, and received a Graduate Fellowship from the Office for Policy Studies on Violence Against Women in 2016. Prior to Old Dominion University, I taught courses at the University of Kentucky, the University of Evansville, the Georgian Institute of Public Affairs, and Tbilisi State University.

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