Rahaf Safi has been appointed Indiana University's fifth presidential intern. Her internship, for the 2013-14 academic year, will focus on initiatives related to IU's international strategic partnerships and the School of Global and International Studies.
Indiana University President Michael A. McRobbie selected Safi for the internship. "Indiana University is a truly global university, and our various academic initiatives in international affairs are growing in importance to students and scholars," McRobbie said. "I am delighted that Rahaf Safi has agreed to serve as my fifth presidential intern. She brings an exceptional resume of international activities and academic pursuits that will greatly assist our international engagement efforts. And she continues the trend of remarkably talented undergraduate students assisting the university in this unique capacity."
Deeply involved in civic activities, Safi founded and serves as president of the IU chapter of Oxfam America, an organization dedicated to finding solutions to global hunger, poverty and injustice. She was an intern this summer with the Association of Female Jurists in Dakar, Senegal, and studied at the Université Cheikh Anta Diop in Dakar. Since April, she has been an associate justice of the IU Supreme Court and represented the court on the Commission on Multicultural Understanding.
"I feel honored to work for the Office of the President," Safi said. "It's an exciting time at IU for global and international studies, and it is great having this opportunity to be a part of the expansion and transition to the new school."
When she was awarded the Truman Scholarship, Safi cited her family background as an influence on her interest in international affairs. Her parents are immigrants from Syria, and other family members remain in Syria, which has been torn by civil war for the past two years. She serves on the Board of Aeons, a student group that advises the IU president, and the Hutton Honors College funding board; and she has been a member of the IU Bloomington Committee for Fee Review, interfaith relations chair of the Muslim Student Union and an intern with local social service agencies.
Presidential interns are high-achieving IU undergraduates who are selected to work in the Office of the President, contributing to the long-term improvement of the university while gaining valuable leadership skills and experience. Previous interns were Catherine Krege in 2012-13, Christian Hines in 2011-12, Esther Uduehi in 2010-11 and Miles Taylor in 2009-10.