Always interested in studying migration issues, Rabbi had been looking for a suitable program in recent years. When he learned about the MDS program through the Faculty of Public Affairs, Rabbi reached out to the Program Director and applied to join its first cohort. “The program fits with my interests and also seemed like it would contribute well to my professional work.”
Born and raised in Bangladesh, Rabbi moved to Canada as an international student who was passionate about food, travel and diasporic culture. Before starting the MDS program at Arthur Kroeger College of Public Affairs, Rabbi had obtained a Graduate Diploma in Public Policy and Program Evaluation at Carleton and a BA in anthropology from Dhaka University. His career spans over 12 years working in different capacities in international agencies, non-profit organizations, and universities in Canada and overseas.
Given his professional experience and background, Rabbi’s main research interests are citizenship, refugee issues and racial justice. “From the beginning of the program, I focused on citizenship as my general research interest and then narrowed it down to the importance of family on citizenship and the policy implications it has down the road in citizenship acquisition.”
Rabbi also shared how he enjoyed his student experience at MDS. Despite all of his classes being online, the great student cohort from a diverse background helped construct a great community of learning and knowledge sharing. “I also received a huge amount of support which provided for a great academic experience from the Program Director, Professor James Casteel, and the Program Administrator, Marcel Regenberg. They both have played an important role in my smooth completion of the program. I also worked with Professor Megan Gaucher as my research supervisor and her monthly check-ins and feedback were very helpful. I thoroughly enjoyed and benefited from their student-first approach, which made my experience special!”
Besides, Rabbi pointed out that the MDS program is designed for students to gain practical experience to become job-ready in research, policy development, frontline migration, and refugee and settlement programs. It touches on a wide range of fields including migration and diaspora literature, art, history and archival programs in Canada and internationally. “The program itself is like an academic junction, where many fields of studies come together and interact on a wide range of issues. The core courses offered a strong theoretical foundation and the required necessary research skills to succeed in my research project.”
When asked about MDS’s impact on his career development, Rabbi said, “there are a few things that stand out and make the MDS program truly special. The program offers a global perspective on migration issues, linking theoretical approaches to real-life issues. Also, since this is an interdisciplinary field, faculty members come from various departments across Carleton and the same is true of subject-matter experts in their fields outside academia, which give a strong multi-disciplinary perspective.” To Rabbi, the MDS program provides the necessary skillsets to deal with complex migration issues and creates synergies between different perspectives.
Joining the Public Service of Canada in 2017, Rabbi is currently working on citizenship policy at the Department of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada. He aims to utilize the knowledge and research skills gained through the MDS program to further his career in the policy development fields of citizenship, immigration, and refugee affairs. “Overall, my goal is to contribute to the international migration policy sector because it resonates with my own migration experience.”