Over time, the blog has included many brief references to, or longer descriptions of, student internships, including some responses to an informal survey I sent out last year, asking about academic year internships. Recently, the Office of Career Services added a feature to their website, offering comments from students on their summer internships. The comments range from appreciation for a special opportunity to observe a nation in transition:
Being in Myanmar during this time of transition for the country was fascinating. Through this internship, I was also given the opportunity to visit parts of the country that are not accessible to tourism. The professional and personal growth I experienced through this internship was invaluable.
To making valuable contacts:
I had the opportunity to collaborate with many important people working in the Asia-Pacific region, including the U.S. Ambassador to the Asian Development Bank, the Director of the Asia-Pacific Center for Security Studies and former Deputy Commander of the U.S. Pacific Command (PACOM), and the former U.S. Ambassador to APEC.
To gaining deeper understanding of the work of an organization and a field:
I really appreciated being engaged in research in human rights abuses, in many countries, working with different researchers, and types of research (i.e. outputs). I gained insight into how Human Rights Watch works as an organization, and how human rights research looks from a non-academic perspective.
To developing key skills:
Professionally, it was a great opportunity to work in French on a daily basis, learning how to communicate and articulate key technical concepts in development work, as well as understand the ever-changing and evolving context of economic development work in Burkina Faso. At the end of my internship, I delivered a consulting presentation highlighting the work I had accomplished, in French, to the senior officials of MCA-BF and MCC.
We’re at the point in the spring semester when students who haven’t already pinned down an internship for the summer will finalize their choice of opportunity. These comments from summer 2013 are a good reminder that Fletcher students do some great work, and make real contributions to their organizations, each summer.