Brittany Renken (MA, 2014) received her BA in Political Science from the University of Western Ontario in 2012. It was there she discovered her interest in the academic study of leadership. Studying the impact that effective and ineffective leaders have on public and private organizations, particularly as it pertains to human rights, became a central research interest. After spending a term studying at the graduate level in the United Kingdom, Brittany began the MA Political Science program at the University of Windsor to delve into this topic further. While completing the program, she had the opportunity to present her master's research at the International Journal of Arts and Sciences (IJAS) annual multidisciplinary conference in Boston, as well as present and publish a paper about nationalist discourse in the former Yugoslavia in Inquiry & Insight, a journal published by the Department of Political Science at the University of Waterloo to highlight high quality graduate student research. Brittany also worked during her MA studies as a Graduate Assistant for courses in Windsor's political science program, and as Data Manager for the University of Waterloo's Polar Data Catalogue, editing and archiving research data. Each of these experiences honed her communication and research skills, enhancing her experience as a graduate student and researcher. In 2014, she successfully defended her major research paper, titled "Applying Theories of Leadership and Followership to Genocide: A Comparative Case Study of Cambodia and Rwanda."
Upon graduating in 2014, Brittany began working as a Research Analyst at Public Sector Digest, a national research publication written for public sector practitioners, leaders, and managers. The Digest covers topics that are important to decision-makers across all levels of government, including planning and development, infrastructure and asset management, leadership, finance, and public policy. Her day-to-day responsibilities include securing editorial contributors, monitoring American politics and legislation, assisting with business development, and writing research articles. Brittany reflects on her MA degree from Windsor, stating that "studying Political Science at the University of Windsor without a doubt greatly developed the analytical and writing skills and political knowledge that are crucial to my newfound career." Most recently, Brittany has been accepted to the PhD program in Political Science at Western University and will begin working on her doctorate in Fall 2016.