Grace Avila (IPED 2017) is currently serving as an intern with the United States Mission (U.S. Mission) to the United Nations (UN), specifically in the Economic and Social Section. The U.S. Mission represents the U.S. government’s interests at the UN. The Economic and Social Section of the U.S. Mission works specifically on issues related to human rights and humanitarian affairs, economic development, gender equality, and other social issues.
As an intern, Grace helps in the preparation and representation of the U.S. for the 60th session of the Commission on the Status of Women (CSW), which will be held from March 14 to 24 this year at the UN Headquarters in New York City. The CSW is the principal global intergovernmental body exclusively dedicated to the promotion of gender equality and the empowerment of women. This year, the priority theme of CSW is the empowerment of women and its link to sustainable development, while the review theme is the elimination and prevention of all forms of violence against women and girls.
In addition to CSW-related work, Grace writes policy briefs and supports the representatives of the U.S. Mission in meetings at the UN and helps in taking down important notes and insights. Grace already shared the room with UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon on three occasions.
Grace applied for this internship during the summer of 2015 on USAJobs. She shared that interested students can sign up here to receive a notification when the internship postings are available, which is approximately six to nine months in advance of the internship start date. She advises other students to provide a very detailed resume since unlike other organizations, the U.S. government prefers extremely detailed resumes.