On Thursday and Friday, November 3rd and 4th, IPED went to Washington, D.C. for the annual Washington, D.C. Career Trip
The IPED students began the trip at Elephant and Castle to meet with representatives from the International Trade Administration (ITA). The discussions began with Israly Echegaray, an IPED alumna, who now works with the ITA and was able to work on both the TTIP and TPP trade agreements.
Israly had two pieces of advice for those seeking a job with the government: 1. Read the job description and be sure to use keywords when answering the question. 2. When answering, don’t be too high level with your answers initially.
Next to speak was Constance Handley, another IPED alumna, who is now the Deputy Director of the Interagency Trade Enforcement Center (ITEC). Her career began with the ITA in the Anti-Dumping and Countervailing Duties office from which she moved around a little bit before her current position.
The final speaker from the ITA was Shane Subler, IPED alumni, who spoke briefly about his work with Ms. Handley in the ITEC doing analysis.
After lunch the IPED students spent some time at the United States Agency for International Development (USAID). The first speaker was Anthony Cotton, RPCV, IPED alumni and Peace Corps Fellow who went on to get the double Master’s degree in IPED and Economics. He was a Presidential Management Fellow before he began his work with USAID. He has had an exciting career so far, holding seven jobs in seven years within the agency.
His tips were: 1. Spend time meeting people and having informational interviews. 2. Make business cards as a means to induce someone to give you theirs. 3. Apply to everything because it helps you learn your own narrative and to nail your resume.
Next to speak was Sarah Webber, RPCV, IPED alumna, Arrupe Fellow, and Fulbright Fellow to Botswana. Ms. Webber works with the Health section of USAID coordinating and organizing health initiatives for USAID.
Her tip was to apply for the Presidential Management Fellow as it was an excellent way to get a foot in the door at USAID.
The last speaker of the day was Tracy O’Heir, a Jesuit Volunteer Corps alumna, IPED alumna and Arrupe Fellow. Ms. O’Hare is the team lead for the southern and western Africa Foreign Disaster Assistance.
Her tip was to study French because it is super useful for a career with USAID.
On Thursday evening IPED had its annual Washington, D.C. Alumni Dinner at Tortilla Coast. IPEDers, both current and past, mingled and discussed opportunities and shared tips.
Friday morning IPED students went to the United States Department of Agriculture. First to speak was Matt Pavone, an IPED alumni and recipient of a Fulbright Fellowship to Italy. Mr. Pavone works with the Farm Service Agency (FSA) as an Outreach Specialist working to implement credit and community support programs to small-scale US farmers.
Next to speak was Hoa Hyunh from the Foreign Agriculture Service (FAS). Mr. Hyunh is the Director of North Asia in the Agricultural Trade Office working in promotion of agriculture products overseas.
Hoa was followed by Jane Wilkins from the FAS. She is an IPED Alumna, and works as an analyst for foreign banks in order for them to take part in a US funded development program. She is a Civil Service Officer as opposed to a Foreign Service Officer.
Next was Brian Gruse who also worked for the FAS as Assistant Deputy Administrator. His focus was in capacity building in developing countries.
Finally, Brian Dutoi wrapped up the information session with a discussion of his with the the FAS in Food for Progress. He is also an IPED alumni and works on monetizing food commodities.
Following a lunch at the USDA cafeteria, the IPED students wrapped up their D.C. trip with a visit to the Millennium Challenge Corporation(MCC).
First to speak was Kari Nelson, formerly with the MCC, but recently moved to Social Impact. Ms. Nelson gave an overview of what the MCC does and the metrics used to determine country eligibility for “compacts.”
Representatives from human resources, Tom Wyke and his co-worker, Gigi, spoke about internship opportunities and hiring process.
Next to speak was Melissa Griswald from the implementation section of MCC. She works on the actual compacts (projects) from the development stage to implementation.
We finished the session with Sarah Lane from monitoring and evaluation, who spoke about her work and some of the metrics used to evaluate the work done in the field.
It was a wonderful trip and the IPED first years were even able to do a little bit of sightseeing.