Personal reflections from our Scholars and Alumni.

Callie Vandewiele

Callie Vandewiele

  • Alumni
  • United States
  • 2014 PhD Latin American Studies
  • Newnham College

Born in Utah, I was raised the oldest of six siblings first there and then just outside of Portland, Oregon. "Unschooled" until the age of 16 my foray into traditional education began with a handful of highschool classes, and then a dive into Spanish language, music and biology at the local community college, where I quickly developed a taste for academic work. As a non-traditional student I graduated first with an AAOT in General Studies from Clackamas Community College and then with honors from Pacific University in 2008, where I received a B.A. in Politics and Government. After graduation I lived and worked in the Alta Verapaz of Guatemala where I developed an interest in women's leadership education and the ongoing interactions between globalized western culture, local cultures and the evolution of ancient traditions.

Latest Blog

A message of hope

Professor Stephen Hawking is best known for ideas that encouraged us to dream beyond the frontiers of the imagination. Aside from his brilliant research papers he is remembered for making science accessible to people through works such as A Brief History of Time, The Universe in a Nutshell and A Briefer History of Time. Professor Hawking’s contributions […]

A human shock: from conflict zone to Cambridge

When students from conflict areas and especially females from the Gaza Strip ask me whether I would encourage them to study abroad for their PhDs, I give a tentative answer: “It depends”. While higher education is very important for both men and women, I know from my own experience that some students from conflict areas […]

A new era for Zimbabwe?

After 37 years in power, Robert Mugabe finally stepped down as the President of the Republic of Zimbabwe in November. Having led the country to economic suffering, political shambles and international shame, the country’s authoritarian leader was finally forced to resign and give up his position as head of the nation. Enter Emmerson Mnangagwa, a man […]

Understanding protein dynamics

Proteins are so small that they cannot be directly observed. Furthermore, protein dynamics occur too quickly to perceive, even if we could observe them. Experimental methods for monitoring protein motion often produce very coarse representations of just a few moving parts. Thus, many researchers have sought to model protein dynamics using computer simulations, which enable […]

Education and the hope for change

I was born and raised in Peshawar, a small city in the north of Pakistan. It is heart-breaking that Peshawar once known as “the city of flowers” has been torn apart in the name of terrorism. In 2014 a blood curdling attack on a school left the city in the state of mourning that has taken a […]

The New Woman: 150 years of women’s magazines

At the hairdressers or in airport lounges, we may casually flip through glossy women’s magazines. Some of us might go to the local news vendors to pick up the latest copy to get the exclusive scoop on the Kardashians. Those in London might be happy with just their free copies of the Stylist. Skimming past the […]

The tragedy of Martin Schulz

In a world of superfast, narrative-driven politics, it pays to choose your metaphors carefully. So when the enthusiasts of Martin Schulz sought earlier this year to capture with a definitive epithet their hero’s rapid rise in the polls, their choice of ‘the Schulz-train’ was spectacularly ill-starred. Unthinkingly, Schulz’s disciples christened their hero’s crusade for the […]

Omar Khadr and Canada’s failure to protect a citizen’s rights

The decision of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s Liberal government to offer an apology and financial compensation to Omar Khadr, a Canadian citizen held for more than a decade by the US for his connection to al Qaeda, has triggered a highly polarised debate within Canada regarding the justice or wisdom underlying this settlement. Much of […]

Don’t give up on Tangier Island

Last week, President Trump made a surprising call to the mayor of a small island town in middle of the Chesapeake Bay. In a CNN special report of their plight against sea level rise, Mayor James ‘Ooker’ Eskridge sent an SOS to the White House. “Donald Trump, whatever you can do, we welcome any help […]

The UK needs to prioritise mass atrocity prevention

When mass atrocity crises erupt, the human, economic, social and security costs to the country and the international community are enormous. We see this in places like Syria, Libya, Yemen and South Sudan and in the subsequent refugee flows, regional and international destabilisation and the rise of terrorism – to name just a few of the […]