Reflecting on a Journey of Diplomacy and Advocacy – Enna Zone Džonlić, IUS Alumni Success Story


As a proud graduate of the International University of Sarajevo (IUS), my journey from a student with a 100% scholarship to a changemaker has been nothing short of transformative. My time at IUS laid the foundation for a career dedicated to public service, diplomacy, and creating positive societal change. My story is a testament to the belief that dedicated individuals can make a significant difference in the world.

My tenure as a Legislative Assistant (Foreign Affairs Fellow) at the U.S. House of Representatives was a pivotal experience. Working within the heart of the U.S. political system, I engaged with complex international relations issues, honing my diplomatic skills and understanding of global affairs. This role not only allowed me to contribute to meaningful legislative processes but also enriched my perspective on international diplomacy.

Perhaps one of my most impactful endeavors was bringing together 15 young individuals from Bosnia and Herzegovina to draft a new constitution for our country via Zoom. Over six months, we delved into the complexities of our nation's governance, seeking to propose a framework that could lead Bosnia towards a more inclusive and equitable future. This project, symbolizing hope and unity, demonstrated the power of youth in spearheading societal change.

Directing a documentary about young Bosnians choosing to stay and contribute to their homeland was a deeply personal project. "At the End of the Tunnel" highlights the resilience and optimism of Bosnia's youth, amidst challenges. It was a testament to the power of storytelling in raising awareness and fostering a sense of community and hope among viewers. My career has been marked by numerous opportunities to engage in high-level discussions concerning the future of B&H. Notably, my meetings with Deputy Assistant Secretary (DAS) Gabriel Escobar, both in Bosnia and Washington, D.C., were instrumental in advancing conversations about our nation's path forward. These discussions underscored the importance of international cooperation and understanding in shaping the future of B&H. The privilege of meeting with U.S. Senators Jeanne Shaheen, Thom Tillis, and Chris Murphy was an invaluable experience. These interactions provided a platform to discuss B&H's challenges and opportunities, reinforcing the support and dedication of the United States to a prosperous B&H. Joining leaders such as European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen, Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte, Croatian Prime Minister Andrej Plenković, and Ambassador Johann Sattler at the Europe House in Sarajevo was a definitive moment, discussing possibility of B&H getting green light for opening the talks, and seeing it happen just over a month after the meeting.

Currently, as a Congressional and Governments Affairs Manager for a major animation studio in the United States, I leverage my background in diplomacy and public service to advocate for storytelling that transcends borders and cultures. This role, coupled with my occasional ventures as a production assistant, underscores my belief in the arts as a powerful vehicle for advocacy and social change. I’m a academician at heart, so I am also currently working on my PhD in Law. To the current and future students of the International University of Sarajevo, let my journey serve as a testament to the power of seizing every opportunity that comes your way. The path to success is built on the foundation of curiosity, engagement, and the relentless pursuit of knowledge. Dive deep into your studies, participate actively in clubs and extracurricular activities, and make the most of the international environment that IUS offers. It's in these spaces that you'll find your passions, develop critical thinking skills, and forge connections that can last a lifetime. Remember, every class you attend, every project you undertake, and every challenge you face is preparing you for a future where you can make a difference.

As you navigate through your academic and professional journey, embrace the diversity of experiences and perspectives you encounter. The world is a mosaic of cultures, ideas, and challenges, and your time at IUS equips you to contribute meaningfully to this tapestry. Seek out mentors, engage in constructive dialogues, and never shy away from opportunities to advocate for change. Stay informed about the developments in your field and the world, for knowledge is the fuel for innovation and leadership. Above all, believe in your ability to effect change. Your journey at IUS is not just about the destination but about becoming a beacon of hope, resilience, and inspiration for others. Embrace this journey with an open heart and a determined spirit, and let your actions reflect the values and education that IUS instills in you.