Presidential Interns Feature Series: Sinclair Barbehenn


Meet our Presidential Interns! Each year we welcome a new cohort of recent graduates to Al Akhawayn’s community. They bring unique experiences, educational backgrounds, and skills to their work in departments throughout the university. During the semester we will be highlighting each intern through a brief interview about their interests and time at AUI. This week, we are pleased to introduce Sinclair Barbehenn! 


Sinclair is a Presidential Intern in the Office of Internal AuditOriginally from Bedford, Massachusetts, she graduated from Kenyon College with a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology and FrenchIn the Office of Internal Audit, Sinclair reviews Al Akhawayn’s departments to ensure they are working effectively and efficiently, along with conducting university-wide risk mitigation. In her free time, she teaches English conversation classes at the Language Center of Al Akhawayn University and plays with the Al Akhawayn volleyball team.  


How did you first learn about AUI and what drew you to the Presidential Internship? 

I first learned about AUI through a special topics class I took in my last semester at Kenyon College, on the Decolonization of Morocco, where we did an informal classroom exchange with a class at AUI. Separately, my psychology professor knew about the Presidential Internship and encouraged me to apply, knowing my interests in cross-cultural studies. It seemed like an ideal opportunity and I was excited getting to know and explore Morocco. I am interested in studying post-colonial French-speaking countries in Africa and the Presidential Internship seemed like the perfect way to start that journey. 


What’s one of your best experiences in Morocco so far? 

I've been lucky enough to have many amazing experiences in Morocco already, but one of my favorites was a trip to Merzouga. Visiting the Sahara was something I've been wanting to do for years and it truly lived up to my expectations. It was beyond beautiful and I loved every minute of it. One moment in particular that I'll hold onto was waking up early to hike into the dunes for the sunrise; it was surreal. 


What do you work towards in your free time? 

I have always been an active person, involved in sports and exploring the outdoors. Volleyball has been a huge part of my life throughout high school and my collegiate career. I've had fun being able to continue playing on the AUI Team. I also try to utilize the gym as much as I can. Aside from that, I have been studying French for years and it is a goal of mine to become fluent one day soon, so I hope to get a little practice with my French while I am in Morocco. 


What’s your dream job? 

My goals have been changing and developing throughout time, so I do not have a specific dream job in mind. But, I am trying to go into cross-cultural psychology because I am interested in understanding different cultures and how they influence and shape people in different ways. I hope to have a job that will allow me to travel and get to know different cultures and people, and hopefully use the knowledge and information for good, by facilitating more understanding and tolerance worldwide. 


If you could choose anyone, who would you pick as your mentor? 

That is a difficult question. I do not know, but if I had to choose, the first person that comes to mind is Beezie Madden. She has been someone I've looked up to my whole life as an Equestrian. I love riding and she is an amazing rider, and part of the American Olympic team. She is widely respected and she worked hard to be as successful as she is and I'm certain that I would learn a lot from her. 


What songs/artists are you currently listening to? 

Some of my go-to artists right now are Post Malone, Travis Scott, and Khalid.