University of Wisconsin–Madison

Steps on the path for change

Experiences on campus, in the nation’s capital and abroad have helped Jonny Vannucci forge a future in politics and diplomacy.

“When I was in D.C., everything just clicked,” Jonny Vannucci says.

Today, the UW-Madison senior is sitting at a table at Peet’s, the coffee shop inside the Memorial Union. Packed with students and their backpacks, laptops, winter jackets and stress over upcoming exams, it couldn’t feel farther away from a summer working with diplomats and policymakers in the nation’s capital.

But for a bit longer, Vannucci will inhabit both worlds. After he graduates in May with degrees in political geography and environmental studies, he’ll wrap his final year in an accelerated master’s program in international public affairs in the La Follette School of Public Affairs, with an eye toward working in diplomacy.

It’s not a bad place to be, because he’s at the unique vantage point of being able to see how his studies and experiences the past four years have led him to where he is now. Yet he couldn’t have predicted sitting at this particular precipice.

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