Ilyssa is a PhD student in the Political Science department and a Fulbright scholar. Her broad research interests include political violence, conflict resolution, transnational terrorism, organized crime, and post-conflict state reconstruction, particularly in the Middle East and Africa.
Her dissertation focuses on the role played by economic actors in conflict and emphasizes the role played by ethnic ties, diaspora, and immigration. She has conducted research in Mali and Algeria.

Ilyssa received her BA in Political Science with a minor in History from Sciences Po (Paris, France). She received her MA in International Security from the Paris School of International Affairs (PSIA, Sciences Po), and a Master’s Certificate in National Defense and Security from the French Institute of Higher Studies in National Defense (IHEDN).