Noely Bernier ’23 was born in Florida, but soon afterward, her father’s service as an Episcopal priest brought the Bernier family to Port-Au-Prince, Haiti. Noely would spend the first 14 years of her life there. In 2016, the Political Science and International Studies double major moved to North Carolina for high school and college.
Noely's advice to current students? “Network! ... Networking has been so beneficial for me, especially in the fields of politics and international affairs. ... Keep in touch with your professors and ask for help. Your professors are here to help you in your career, and they only wish to see you succeed.”
“I was drawn to the Core Values at Guilford College, as well as the study-abroad opportunities,” Noely says. “I enjoyed the sense of community I felt the first time I visited Guilford. Everyone was friendly, and I was also extremely excited to grow as a student. I knew I could do that here because of the class size and the professor-to-student relationship.”
Life at Guilford
Guilford’s emphasis on building professor-student relationships soon came to fruition for Noely. She has especially appreciated Provost Maria Rosales, Political Science Professor George Guo, and History Professor Tiffany Holland for their roles in her college career.
“They’ve helped me grow and learn so much,” she says. “They’ve all shaped my experience at Guilford, and I know those are the people I can go to for advice and guidance.”
Noely — an Honors Scholar, Principled Problem Solving Scholar, Community Scholar, and president of the Black Student Union — has been drawn to political science for as long as she can remember.
“Politics and international affairs have always been part of my life, especially in how I see and navigate the world as an immigrant black woman,” she says. “I wanted my areas of study to help me understand global thought, human rights, and the relationship between the state and the individual.”
Her passion extends even further than that.
Life Down the Road
Aiming to make the world a more-just place, Noely plans to attend law school once she graduates in May 2023.
“As someone passionate about all things related to foreign affairs, intersectionality, and equity, I have an interest in foreign policy and multilateral development banks,” she says.
[Rising high-school seniors with an interest in international affairs are invited to Guilford College Rise! Apply to attend — and apply for a scholarship.]
For anyone coming from other areas of the world to Guilford or those who want to study political science, Noely has a word of advice.
“Network! Network!” she says. “Networking has been so beneficial for me, especially in the fields of politics and international affairs. Connecting with others in areas that interest you should be your top priority. Keep in touch with your professors and ask for help. Your professors are here to help you in your career, and they only wish to see you succeed.”
“I’ve also been interested in how political choices manifest in our lives, from the cars we drive to the clothes we wear and the roads we drive on. And of course, larger aspects such as the treatment of marginalized people and wars the United States engages in. Furthermore, my areas of study helped me learn about the American political system, structure, and the world beyond the United States.”
Are you interested in a career in international affairs or politics? Schedule your personalized visit to learn more about Guilford's phenomenal International Studies and Political Science departments. The Office of Admission is ready to meet you!