Warraich is an Analytical Lead and Startup Success Manager at Google and serves as a Board Trustee for the Squeaks Foundation, which provides scholarships for underprivileged female students in Pakistan.
Headshot of Sameer Shafi
Sameer Shafi

“Social impact and data-based policy go hand-in-hand,” said Sameer Shafi Warraich, MPP’22, “and that’s been at the core of my academic and professional journey.”

In 2014—years before Warraich applied to Harris—he was already finding connections between service and data. “I had just earned my BA in political economy from Rhodes College in Tennessee and decided to take that knowledge home to Pakistan. I wanted to focus on education—specifically women’s education—and development capacity building in remote areas.” 

To that end, Warraich served as a School Development Professional for Innovate Educate Inspire (IEI) Pakistan, helping local schools develop their sustainable management policies. He also became a Board Trustee for the Squeaks Foundation, an organization that provides scholarships to female students in the Northwest region of Pakistan.

“I started realizing that social impact was really at the core of everything I did—and wanted to continue doing,” said Warraich. “I also realized I needed to develop the skills to better fill some of the gaps I saw that prevented social change, such as a resistance to digitization and a disconnect between international organizations and the populations they served. My next step,” Warraich said, “was Harris.”

During his time at Harris, Warraich completed the Specialization in Data Analytics and used those skills to develop a deep familiarity with data analysis and communication. He carried those skills into the suite of data-wrangling services he currently performs for Google, where he analyzes massive pools of digital information. “I work primarily with the retail sector to provide insights about macroeconomic trends, support companies in developing tools to ensure a robust and durable privacy centric impact measurement in the digital space, and work with proprietary Google search data to track consumer trends in different markets.” Warraich also contributes to Google's startup accelerator as a Startup Success Manager, working primarily with companies focused on Sustainable Development Goals.

“What I deeply appreciated about UChicago was the ease with which my core values of bringing about impactful social change aligned with data analytics and evidence-based policy.”

The Harris community, Warraich said, has also been invaluable. “I met people that became lifelong friends—not just peers or classmates, but people who will be part of my life for many, many years to come.” 

Warraich also was an Obama Scholar while at Harris, which he credited with further developing his understanding of service and leadership. “We met some of the biggest emerging leaders from around the world and worked with people doing somewhat similar work but in totally different communities and with totally different pedagogies. That experience definitely opened my mind to new methods and tools for making an impact.”

For those considering applying to Harris, Warraich recommends exploring UChicago beyond the classrooms. “Really get involved in the community, whether through behavioral research, Crime Lab, or the Obama Scholars Program. As much as we are trained in theory, it’s important to take advantage of some really hands-on work.”