Tag Archives: UN Women

Mahlatse Ramoroka ’19 and UN Women

By: Mahlatse Ramoroka ’19

I am a South Africa national, currently part of the IPED program through the South African Centennial Scholarship. I am interning with United Nations Women at the Independent Evaluation Office (IEO). The mission of UN Women is “to enhance accountability, inform decision making and contribute to learning on gender equality.” The IEO facilitates the monitoring and implementation of wider gender stratification throughout the bodies or agencies of the United Nations. The primary focus of the office is on adopting gender-responsive, decentralized and cooperative evaluation systems at a national level that strengthen the capacities of women and girls across the board. My responsibilities as an intern include handling administrative duties, conducting research on the UN’s System Wide Action Plan (SWAP), taking notes in meetings, and analyzing evaluation reports. I have been doing some detailed research on goal 6 – clean water and sanitation – of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) with particular attention to applying the UN-SWAP framework to the WASH (Water, Sanitation and Hygiene) sector, gender equality and institutional governance.

One of the most significant highlights of my internship is being able to participate and observe, by attending and helping at events, how gender equality is championed. On the 22nd of November 2017, I attended the launch of the campaign that seeks to end violence against women and girls, led by the Executive Director of UN Women, Dr Phumzile Mlambo-Ncquka. The campaign was launch under the theme “Leave no one behind: End violence against women and girls”.


Interacting with people from different countries, at different levels of the organization has been another life-changing experience for me. I am enjoying my experience at UN Women, at it continues to afford me various learning opportunities.

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Student Spotlight: Grace Avila at the U.S. Mission to the United Nations

Grace Feature

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.

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