Ruby Anastacio | IE University

Ruby Anastacio

About me

Born into a Brazilian family, I grew up in Dallas, Texas, where I remained until making the move to New York for my undergraduate studies. My learnings in international affairs and the time I spent as an intern at the United Nations broadened my horizons and guided me toward a global career. I now live in Madrid, pursuing my Master in International Development. Whenever I’m not surrounded by my books, you’ll probably find me wandering around the Royal Palace courtyard gardens and soaking up the buzz of the city.

shapeRuby Anastacio
case2Master’s student
InfoMaster in International Development
Ruby Anastacio

"The best part of my IE University Experience has been the privilege of learning with peers from all over the world who are individually remarkable and choose to contribute [...] unique personal case studies, perspectives and experiences."

Ruby Anastacio

 A real-world approach to economic development

Brazilian-American Ruby Anastacio's early years were spent in Dallas, Texas, worlds away from the Spanish capital of Madrid, which she now calls home as a student of the Master in International Development program.

Of course, a five-year stint in New York City before that proved essential in helping to prepare her for such a change. While there, she studied at The King’s College, completing her bachelor’s degree in Politics, Philosophy and Economics, with a minor in International Affairs. As part of her program, she took an internship at a nonprofit organization working in the field of immigration among other part-time roles, allowing her to build her skill set and lay the groundwork for her future career.

These experiences gave her all the tools she needed to take on a new role as a United Nations intern coordinator for the World Evangelical Alliance (WEA). At the same time, she also worked as the program director for a children’s ministry at the Lower Manhattan Community Church.

After graduation, Ruby was eager for opportunities to put all the theory she had learned in her undergraduate degree into practice. Her search led her to IE University, where she stumbled upon the Master in International Development. Ready to take her education to the international arena, Ruby decided to hop across the Atlantic and join a program that would both provide an accurate preview of her professional future while also moving her closer toward her professional goals. 

Ruby was initially attracted to the program by what she viewed as a structure similar to her intended field of work. However, after settling into her new life in Madrid, she quickly discovered that its global nature exceeded all her expectations. She admits that the best part of her experience so far has been learning alongside remarkable peers from every corner of the planet. According to Ruby, she feels privileged to benefit from their unique perspectives, thriving on their unique personal case studies, perspectives and experiences—unique contributions that continually enrich the learning process. What’s more, the sense of solidarity and curiosity cultivated by her cohort has been a personal highlight of the program.

Ruby Anastacio | IE University
Ruby Anastacio | IE University
Ruby Anastacio | IE University

Furthermore, she was excited to discover that the Master in International Development places special emphasis on career development. That the program, designed in a unique partnership with the prestigious United Nations System Staff College (UNSSC), would open up a whole new world of opportunity for her. Not only would Ruby be able to make face-to-face connections with leading professionals in the field, but she would also make significant inroads into the United Nations ecosystem and other similar international organizations.

Besides its students, one of the university’s greatest assets is undoubtedly its world-renowned academic faculty—something Ruby has experienced firsthand. A great example of this happened recently in her favorite course to date: Development Economics. She was delighted to discover it would be taught by a prominent development professional whose work she had studied as part of her bachelor’s degree. Struck by the professor’s practical knowledge, expertise and in-depth industry insight, she excelled in the eight-week challenge of running a detailed diagnostic of an entire country’s economic situation.

But it isn’t just “all work and no play” for this ambitious student. Ruby explains that her time in Madrid has done more than allow her to work alongside and learn from internationally experienced development peers. It’s also made her a better professional by refining her worldview and giving her a chance to confront its inherent biases through exposure to different cultural, academic and professional perspectives.

Indeed, for many students, the program’s appeal lies in how it breaks beyond the confines of the classroom to provide real-world experience. In Ruby’s case, this came in the form of a trip to the World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC) Global Tourism Summit in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. 

The annual event brings together top industry players and government representatives to coordinate the sector’s efforts to foster inclusivity and sustainability. As a student delegate, it represented an unrivaled opportunity for Ruby to “collaborate with students from around the world and engage directly with government delegates” interested in sharing their wealth of knowledge. She acknowledges it as a prime example of IE University’s high-level, global connections and its boundless commitment to students’ positive career development.

As for her adopted home, whenever she’s not in class, Ruby enjoys taking in the sights and sounds of Madrid. Her top recommendation for a scenic study break is the Royal Palace Museum and its courtyard gardens—an oasis in the heart of the city.