By: Eva van Ophem
Ana Blatnik is a Gender and Global Security Program Assistant at WIIS. She is a third-year student at New York University in Abu Dhabi, where she is pursuing a bachelor’s degree in Legal Studies, as well as minoring in Economics and Political Science. Her studies focus on looking at different legal systems via a comparative lens, with an emphasis on the common law system.
Ana grew up in the outskirts of a small town in Slovenia and spent all of her childhood there. When she was eighteen, she moved to the United Arab Emirates to pursue her bachelor’s degree at NYU. Throughout her degree, she has moved around different NYU campuses and has spent some time in the United Kingdom, Ethiopia, and the United States. When Ana graduates from NYU, she hopes to pursue her master’s degree in Europe, which is her home and her favorite place to travel. Her areas of interest range from commercial law to women’s rights and international security. Once she obtains a master’s degree in the latter field, she hopes to work for an institution or organization affiliated with the European Union or, alternatively, go on to pursue a legal career. In either case, she believes she will feel most fulfilled if her work allows her to increase people’s safety, whatever capacity that may be in.
Ana has a wide range of past experiences that have spawned her interest in international security, the law, and gendered issues. Her past work includes working as an intern for UNICEF in the summer of 2019, where she worked in donations acquisitions. She underwent extensive training on working with potential donors and learned about how UNICEF organizes its various programs aimed at increasing child safety. Ana has also had various legal internships, as she worked for the law firm Curtis, Mallet-Prevost, Colt & Mosle LLP in the fall of 2019 where she was both a legal intern and a research assistant. The experience of working in a successful Dubai office of a US law firm was completely different than anything she has ever experienced before but she really enjoyed seeing how fast-paced and intellectually stimulating commercial law can be. In 2020, she also interned at the Royal Courts of Justice’s Support Through Court unit in London, an independent charity that offers support to those that come to plead their case without legal representation. Working there gave her a very unique perspective on the legal system and made her realize how useful it is to have had some form of legal education in her studies, regardless of whether she ends up having a law-focused career or not. Finally, Ana also worked as an intern for the organization femLens which is focused on empowering women in underrepresented communities to become social agents of change through visual storytelling.
As for her personal life, Ana’s favorite pastime includes watching TV shows and solo travel. The latter has been her preferred way of spending weekends abroad and summers living back home in Europe. Her favorite TV shows are workplace comedies or dramas which portray female characters in all their complexity. Her favorite series Suits merges both, but she is also a huge fan of The Handmaid’s Tale, Bates Motel, Big Little Lies and Slovenian classics. Besides watching TV shows and travelling, Ana also loves yoga, which she finds is important for stress relief and staying in touch with her body. As for pets, Ana has a cat whom she adores and calls “Donna”, the name of a beloved TV character but also meaning “woman” in Italian. Funny enough, however, her family cannot agree on one name for their cat, so they have all come to call her a name they each prefer.. As of late, Donna has given birth to three kittens and they are all happy and healthy in Ana’s childhood home in Laško.