On Friday, October 1st, 2021 IPED hosted this year’s non-profit career day virtually. The event was organized by Andrew Gardener, our new IPED Careers Coordinator, and included speakers from Catholic Relief Services (CRS), the Grameen Foundation, and the Clinton Foundation who shared first-hand insights and tips for career paths in their non-profit organizations.
Nadia and Kev focused our attention on the International Development Fellowship as a starting point for a career with CRS. Kev spoke about the importance of being intentional and proactive during the application process, particularly in applying as soon as is possible. The fellowship is a 12 month development program leading to careers in international relief and development. It is tailored to building skills and experiences in programming and operations focusing on: project design and development, project management, monitoring and evaluating, accountability and learning, partnership and capacity building. Language skills are highly taken into account during the application process, which also includes a language exam for those who include proficiency in a second language. This fellowship opportunity includes various benefits and is open to all, including international students.
Our second presentation was Emily Romero, IPED ’08, from the Grameen Foundation.
Emily Romero is a Senior Director at the Grameen Foundation, a global non-profit organization based out of Washington D.C. that is dedicated to empowering the poor, especially women, and to create a world without poverty and hunger. As Senior Director at Grameen Foundation, Emily leads the Institutional Relations team’s efforts to pursue strategic partnerships and new funding opportunities for financial inclusion, women’s economic empowerment, and digital agriculture programs worldwide. As a Peace Corps Volunteer, Fordham Arrupe Fellow, and Catholic Relief Services International Development Fellow, Emily spent five years living and working in Central and West Africa supporting microfinance, women’s empowerment, and environmental education initiatives.
The Grameen Foundation does work in Latin America, Africa, and South Asia providing empowerment services for for women and leveraging community agents and technology. The foundation has institutional relations with the State Department, USAID, other international governments including the UN, as well as corporate foundations. Their work focuses on capacity building within the community being worked in, using local agents to serve their communities and bring needed government programs to people’s doorsteps. The Grameen foundation has various career opportunities including internships, fellowships, and full-time positions across their global operations. Emily credits her securing a high level position to the culmination of her past experiences including work with CRS.
A notable piece of advice from Emily about approaching a career in non-profit was to “focus on the leadership more than the job description,” in order to align with your work and remain motivated.
Our third and final presentation was with Grace Avila, IPED ’17, and her colleagues Erica Kruszel, and Cassie Epstein.
Prior to joining IPED, Grace served as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Thailand. After finishing Peace Corps, Grace came to IPED on a Public Service Fellowship. While at IPED Grace interned at the US Mission to the UN, the State Department in Myanmar, and with UN Women. Grace also earned a second M.A. in Economics while at Fordham. After graduation Grace worked with the Friendship Ambassadors Foundation before moving to the Clinton Foundation where she is today.
Erica Kruszel is a manager at the Clinton Global Initiative, and Cassie Epstein is a Senior Associate with the Clinton Global Initiative University.
There are multiple career opportunities at the Clinton Foundation including work in government relations and foreign policy as well as fellowships and internship opportunities. Careers at the foundation can be attained through different paths of studies and work experiences. Our speakers also provided insightful career tips about salary negotiation and preparing for career prospecting.