March Alumni Profile: Kristina Bartold

Thursday, March 21, 2019

Kristina Bartold's headshot.Kristina Bartold is an alumnus of both the Peace and Conflict Studies (PACS) and Master of Peace and Conflict Studies (MPACS) programs here at Conrad Grebel. During her undergraduate degree, Kristina was very involved in student leadership as a Residence Don and Student Ambassador. Kristina worked at St. Jerome’s University, at which she developed student leadership programs and worked in residence life. She also completed a PACS field study in Ukraine through the Beyond Borders program, where she worked at an orphanage for four months.  

As both an undergraduate student and a graduate student, Kristina loved the broad nature of the PACS program, as well as the opportunity to personalize the course of her studies. “I enjoyed the interpersonally-focused courses, but then also having the opportunity to learn about our global community and conflict on a mass scale,” she says. In addition to this, being able to connect with likeminded students and faculty played a large role in shaping the way Kristina saw both herself and her community.  

Kristina is also the recipient of the Rotary Peace scholarship. With this funding, she was able to participate in two workshops from the Conflict Management Certificate Program at Conrad Grebel. These workshops were immensely helpful to her in applying her learning from her degrees into her life and work. One of the workshops, “Understanding Conflict Foundations,” provided her with an opportunity to learn from colleagues in other industries, which allowed her to get a sense of some of the ways conflict resolution principles can be used in other contexts. 

Learning from Betty [Pries] also gave me a lot of tangible skills that I have been able to use in my own life and sparked my on-going interest of learning new techniques for conflict resolution.

Kristina Bartold

The other workshop Kristina participated in was “Peacemaking Circles Training,” which she claims was life-changing. She loved being able to connect with a group of individuals and learning about how Circles can be used for peacemaking in a variety of contexts.

Student Success Office sign.Currently, Kristina is working at the Student Success Office at the University of Waterloo as the New Student Transition Coordinator. In this position, Kristina is using skills she has learned through her experiences with the PACS department, despite it not seeming peace-related. “In working with many campus partners, developing new programming and making meaningful connections, I see the core values I learned from my time in Grebel programs,” she says. 

In the future, Kristina hopes to further develop her skills in conflict mediation and community building. Unsure of her exact career or academic path, she knows she enjoys using all of the skills she learned at Grebel to better her own community and develop conflict capacity and will continue to apply them whenever she gets the chance.  

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