Category Archives: Trips

Summer Series: Angeli Diamante ’18 and the LISA Award

By: Angeli Diamante

Angeli with Cristo de la Concordia. This statue is taller than the Christ the Redeemer statue in Brazil!

I was awarded a Language Immersion Study Award (LISA) fellowship to study Spanish in Bolivia. With Spanish being one of the most widely spoken languages in the world, learning this language will be an asset in my future career. Living in Cochabamba, Bolivia was different from life in New York City. Life moved at a slower and relaxed pace. And the food was wonderful – I definitely recommend eating their salteñas.

Angeli with the guide in Pico Tunari.

Choosing the Maryknoll language learning program was a great choice. The personalized instruction from the professors helped me become better in my weak areas. It was not only language they imparted. Every week we had an hour-long conference where we learned more about the culture and the state of Bolivia. We also had cultural trips which made me appreciate the country beyond its language and tourist spots.

I had the wonderful opportunity to stay with a very hospitable host family who took great care of me during the entire 6 weeks in Cochabamba. Being surrounded by non-English speakers definitely forced me to improve my communication skills in Spanish.

Angeli with her host family.

LISA is a great opportunity and I urge students to apply for it if they can. Not only do you learn a new language, you experience a different culture as well.

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IPED in South Africa

By: Moses Cam

Last August, 8 IPEDers went on a trip of a lifetime to South Africa to participate in the Emerging Markets: South Africa program alongside South African students and professionals. The study tour program runs through the partnership of Fordham University and the University of Pretoria. It aims to deepen students’ knowledge of emerging markets while studying within the South African emerging market, with the academic coursework and research culminating into the creation of an Equity Investment Prospect Report. The course is required for the advanced certificate in Emerging Markets and Country Risk Analysis.

For three weeks, students had the opportunity to learn about emerging markets in the classroom while also see the theories in practice through various site visits that exposed them to the different sectors in the South African economy, with a focus on the banking and finance industry. Informational trips included visits to the Public Investment Corporation, South African Reserve Bank, the Johannesburg Stock Exchange, the National Economic Development and Labour Council (NEDLAC), Standard Bank, the American Chamber of Commerce, the Brazilian Embassy, and other venues.

Aside from the academic load, participants of the course were also sent on cultural excursions to expose them on the rich history and traditions of the Rainbow Nation.

While students spent most of their time in Pretoria and Johannesburg, IPEDers had the opportunity to
check out Cape Town and experience everything that the coastal city and wine capital of South Africa
had to offer: an immersive experience in Robben Island, a memorable hike up the majestic Table
Mountain and gorgeous views courtesy of the Cape of Good Hope.

The South African experience was capped off with a trip to Kruger National Park where students went on a safari to see the famous Big 5 of the South African grasslands.

The Emerging Markets: South Africa Study tour is an incredible opportunity for students to study an
emerging market economy while immersed in that emerging market economy. Scholarships are
available through Fordham’s St. Campion Institute.

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IPED Career Trip: Washington D.C.

By: Sarah Garwood

November 16th and 17th, our 2019 IPED cohort traveled to Washington D.C. to visit with IPED alumni at various organizations. After an early morning bus ride, we started our day at the United States Agency for International Development (USAID). Alumni Anthony Cotton ’08, Tracey O’Heir ’06, and Sarah Weber ’05 spoke with us about their work in strengthening financial institutions, LGBTI programming, foreign disaster assistance, and managing large scale HIV/AIDS health grants. They shared with us their tips and tricks on how to succeed in an international development career, particularly in the government sector.

IPED student with alumni at USAID.

IPED students with Dr. Schwalbenberg at USAID.

For lunch, we met at Elephant and Castle Restaurant with alumni representatives from the International Trade Administration (ITA). Connie Handley ’98 spoke about global markets and her work with foreign trade partnerships. Shane Subler ’03 shared about his work investigating manufacturing complaints and dumping violations. They, like their colleagues at USAID, highly recommended the Presidential Management Fellowship (PMF) Program as a channel into government work.

IPED students enjoying appetizers at Elephant and Castle Restaurant.

IPED student and trips coordinator, Greg Fischer, explaining our itinerary.

During the afternoon, students checked out the Jefferson Memorial and other monuments in Washington D.C.

IPED students in front of the Washington Monument.

IPED students at the Jefferson Memorial.

That evening, we gathered at Tortilla Coast for a special alumni dinner. Several alumni came to share a meal with students, talking about their experiences in IPED, work abroad, and professional careers in Washington D.C. The IPED community gathers every year during the D.C. Career Trip for this night of food, fun, and conversation.

Students eating at Tortilla Coast.

Students and alumni talking at Tortilla Coast.

The next day, we met alumni Brian Dutoi ’14 and his colleagues Megan Francic, Michael Riedel, and Jill Luxembourg at the Foreign Agricultural Service Office (FAS). These Foreign Service Officers spoke about the promotion of food security through international free trade. They also talked about government to government trade, food safety, and the intersection of trade and development.

IPED students at the Foreign Agricultural Service.

After a pitstop at the White House, we met with IPED alumnus Cameron Hinksen ’13 at Chemonics. Chemonics is a private sector project management firm with staff in 76 countries. Ninety-five percent of their business comes from USAID contracts and projects. Cameron talked with us about the mission and structure of Chemonics and gave us tips about securing meaningful employment upon graduation from the IPED program.

IPED students in front of the White House.

IPED students at the White House.

IPED students at Chemonics with Alumni Cameron Hinksen ’13.

Overall, the trip was informative and gave students an inside glance at some of the top government development organizations in Washington D.C. All alumni, both at our site visits and the alumni dinner, were warm and supportive. Thanks to all those who contributed to the success of this trip!

IPED students in Washington D.C.

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2017 Bronx Trip: “Undesign the Redline”

By: Sarah Garwood

Greg Jost meets with IPED students outside the Andrew Freedman House. photo credit: James Duke

Last Friday, IPED students met with Gregory Jost at the Andrew Freedman House Designing the WE studio to learn about the history of redlining in the Bronx, New York. The interactive presentation included historic maps of the city, government documents from the late 1930s, and visual representations of historic events over the past several decades.

Greg Jost explains Undesign the Redline exhibit to IPED students. pc: Elly Reserva

IPED student, Clare Pressimone, checks out the exhibit. pc: Elly Reserva

The presentation exposed the systemic racism involved in the segregation and resettlement of people across various neighborhoods in the Bronx in the 30s and 40s. Neighborhoods were labelled and rated based on the populations that lived in each area and subsequently experienced pressures and discrimination from lending organizations, housing providers, and neighbors. Repercussions of these policies are still prevalent today.

Greg Jost explains Bronx history in front of a mural on the Grand Concourse. pc: Sarah Garwood

After viewing the exhibit, we headed down the Grand Concourse, enjoying murals and some Jamaican cuisine along the way. The trip concluded with lunch and continued dialogue at Railroad Park.

IPED students and Greg Jost at Railroad Park, Bronx, NY. pc: James Duke

To learn more about the history of redlining, planned shrinkage, block busting, and the interactive elements of the Undesign the Redline project, follow this link: http://www.designingthewe.com/undesign-the-redline

Gregory Jost and Designing the WE host a variety of social impact labs and projects. Check out what they’re working on and how you can get involved at: http://www.designingthewe.com/gregory/

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Prestigious Awards: Robyn J Emory-Murray on the Critical Language Scholarship in Xi’an

Robyn Emory-Murray IPED ’18

Robyn Emory-Murray (IPED ’18) is a recipient of the 2017 Critical Language Scholarship (CLS) for Mandarin in Xi’an, China. CLS is an eight-week intensive language and cultural immersion program targeted toward students of critical languages as defined by the U.S. Department of State. This fully-funded government program offers students the opportunity to live among the cultures whose languages they are studying while fully integrating themselves into the language itself.

Datong Furong Park lights at night

Robyn with the Terracotta Warriors 兵马俑

Robyn received the award with the help of the Office of Prestigious Fellowships, who assisted her with the lengthy application process. When asked about the application process, she said, “The Office of Prestigious Fellows was invaluable. They helped me frame my thoughts, answers, and attributes in a way that really spoke to the program and its goals.” The application was due in the Fall, and awards were announced in March of the next year.

Robyn at the Kongtong Shan (崆峒山) Bridge to Heaven

Robyn’s goals are to continue to pursue Mandarin in the hopes of using it as she pursues a career in economic and international security studies, specifically centered on the Sino-American relationship.

The reward for the night hike, sunrise from East Peak of Hua Shan

Robyn had the following advice for those interested in the program: “Go all in. There is a pretty intense language pledge and those that stick to it really see amazing results. At the same time, though, don’t stress yourself out. You will have a lot more success if you take care of yourself and remember that learning a new language should also be fun!”

The lights during the Hua Shan (华山) night hike

Robyn on the famous Hua Shan Plank Walk

Robyn is a full-time student in the IPED program and a recipient of the Public Service Assistantship.

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