Sophia Skupien

Host institution: University of Warsaw, Center for Europe

Grant category: U.S. Student
Project: Europeanization of the Polish Party System

Academic year: 2016-2017
Grant start date: October 1, 2016
Grant end date: June 30, 2017

Sophia recently received her master’s from the Center for Eurasian, Russian, and East European Studies at Georgetown University’s Walsh School of Foreign Service, where she wrote her master’s thesis on electoral volatility in Poland. During her stay in Poland, she will continue to research party politics in contemporary Poland, focusing on the impact of European Union accession on the structure of the Polish party system. She is interested to explore how the myriad requirements of the EU’s acquis communautaire constrained the issues over which leaders could exercise autonomous decision-making power and thereby forced candidates and parties to alter their electoral strategies and platforms.

Sophia received her Bachelor of Arts magna cum laude in Political Science and Slavic Studies from Columbia University in 2014. During her undergraduate studies, she spent two summers studying abroad in Krakow at Jagiellonian University, where she studied Polish language, history, and literature. In addition to her research on political parties, she also hopes to continue to pursue her interest in literary translation and contemporary Polish literature, particularly the works of Paweł Huelle and Andrzej Stasiuk, during her time abroad. In her free time, Sophia enjoys playing squash, visiting museums, and learning languages.