Marissa Payne received a Master's degree in international relations and international communications from Boston University, graduating with distinction. While studying at BU, she was a research fellow at the university's Institute for the Study of Conflict, Ideology and Policy. Since childhood, Marissa has been fascinated with all things Russian. After graduating from Grinnell College with a degree in Russian language and literature, she moved to Moscow, where she worked as the editor of a nightlife and entertainment publication. Despite her forays into Moscow's decadent club and fashion scenes, she finds the country's foreign policy an even juicier subject.