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Claudia Santana

"Access to high quality education shaped my life, and as such, I decided early on in my career that I wanted to dedicate my professional efforts to helping other students have access to these opportunities. My passion for Education emerged at an early stage in my career journey, while working with underserved populations within higher education to provide support and guidance in navigating the complexities of the university system.

I come from a bicultural background, growing up in the border cities of San Diego, California, USA and Tijuana, BC, Mexico.  My world has always been defined by an intersection of cultures, realities, paradigms and social problems. Having to navigate a world that challenges rules and standards by two different languages, governments and norms, has shaped my way of seeing the world through a dynamic lens that is in constant evolution.


I graduated San Diego State University with a degree in Psychology and a certificate in Linguistics. After spending a semester abroad in Chile, a desire to broaden my knowledge through international experiences was determined, so I decided to pursue additional academic challenges through a Fulbright program in the capital city of Bogotá, Colombia, initially as a grantee in a teaching program, and later on as the coordinator of US Programmes in the country. There, I also worked with the British Council in implementing a curriculum for global citizenship competencies for children of primary public schools. The experience of collaborating with local and international government entities that address a large variety of social and political issues from different angles helped me further comprehend the importance of programmes such as PPLE, which holds at its core values the principles of mutual understanding of different academic disciplines as well as the enriching diversity of our lived experiences, all with the goal of improving and growing with an interconnected support.

As a Policy Officer, I will diligently work to advocate for the learning objectives and best practices of the PPLE Bachelor’s, while continuing the work of improving the quality of the programme as new challenges emerge. My objective is to connect with people and strengthen the bridges that the University of Amsterdam already provides, while maintaining at the forefront of my work principles of diversity and inclusion. My hopes are to contribute to a constant mutual and global understanding through my corner of Education and Policy."