Political psychology grad’s opinion on politics changed by his courses

An image of Fares Abdullah

Fares Abdullah is graduating with a master’s degree in political psychology.


Editor's note: This story is part of a series of profiles of notable spring 2023 graduates.

Fares Abdullah, from Dubai, United Arab Emirates, is graduating with a master’s degree in political psychology at Arizona State University. He began with an undergraduate degree from University of La Verne, where he had a scholarship for debate. 

As soon as he saw ASU’s political psychology program — in the School of Politics and Global Studies — after he finished his undergraduate degree, he knew that was what he wanted to pursue next.

One of the highlights of Abdullah’s time at ASU was the moment at the end of sessions when he could look back and realize how far he had come, and how much more he knew then than he had before. 

Abdullah took the time to reflect on all the new things he has learned and how the MA in political psychology program has altered his views on politics. 

Question: What was your “aha” moment when you realized you wanted to study the field you majored in?

Answer: I loved politics, and I loved psychology. I really felt at the center of a lot of the questions I had about the world could be found in between our own ears as humans.

Q: What’s something you learned while at ASU — in the classroom or otherwise — that surprised you or changed your perspective?

A: That most people don’t care about politics, and that the people who do like politics may be causing a lot of our problems as a society.

Q: Which professor taught you the most important lesson while at ASU?

A: Dr. Matthew Dempsey. I took his politics and polarization class, and it really changed my outlook on politics.

Q: What’s the best piece of advice you’d give to those still in school?

A: If you can get ahead of readings, do it. It gives you more time to have fun with your final project!

Q: What was your favorite spot for power studying?

A: The local Starbucks.

Q: What are your plans after graduation?

A: I am hoping to join the Army and serve my country.

Q: If someone gave you $40 million to solve one problem on our planet, what would you tackle?

A: I’d really like to help the Middle East/North Africa region develop more inter-nation diplomacy and integration as a regional block.

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