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SAM SCHAFFER, Mexico, 2017-2018

SAM SCHAFFER
Fulbright Year: 2017-2018
Country: Mexico City, Mexico
Proposal Type: Binational Business Internship
UGA Undergraduate Major: International Affairs
Graduation Date: Spring 2017
Hometown: Atlanta, Georgia

Sam Schaffer’s passion for business all started with doughnuts.

While still in high school, Sam and his twin sister started Ding Dong Donuts, an order-by-website doughnut delivery service that grew to encompass much of the Atlanta area. This foray into entrepreneurship was Sam’s first brush with the business world, opening a path that has led to extensive work in Central and South America and will result in a well-rounded insight of international business.

“I believe my doughnut business jumpstarted my interest in entrepreneurship, and I’ve since been fortunate to work in a variety of industries, including public relations, law, and management,” said Sam, who graduated from UGA in May with a degree in international affairs.

With a worldwide business network and a considerable influence on an array of industries, Mexico City is considered to be the commercial hub in Latin America. Sam will spend the year there working a full-time Binational Business Internship by day and taking executive MBA classes by night at ITAM, the Instituto Tecnológico Autónomo de México.

“This program creates an opportunity for young professionals from the U.S. to better understand Mexican business and how Mexican commerce impacts the country, the greater Latin America region, the U.S., and beyond,” Sam said.

Sam, who was a Roosevelt Scholar, Presidential Scholar, and Eagle Scout, has extensive business experience in Latin America. He held two internships with United Airlines, working to competitively position the airline in the Americas by spearheading strategy development projects working onsite in Mexico City, San Jose, Buenos Aires, São Paulo, and Santiago.

Upon his return from Mexico City, he has a job waiting with Deloitte in Washington, D.C., as a business analyst in the company’s federal strategy and operations division, a position he says lines up nicely with his training and interests.

“As an international relations major, I think this job perfectly combines my interest in politics and business, and I will be consulting on projects with many of federal agencies, the military, federal healthcare operations, and more,” he said. “I look forward to working with a firm ideally in consulting or finance, although I am more than interested in exploring different options, such as working with social entrepreneurship incubators, start-ups, and non-profits.”

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