This week, we caught up with current MAIS student to learn about his recent internship experience. All MAIS students complete an internship intended to apply in-class learning to real-world situations. Jules (MAIS ’18) shares his experience below.
Who are you:
My name is Jules and I am from Yaounde, Cameroon. I am interested in global issues, more precisely, in conflict resolution and human rights advocacy in Central Africa.
During my first semester in the MAIS program, I had the opportunity to intern in the Marketing and Digital Communications Department at the World Affairs Council of Northern California. World Affairs is a non-profit organization that offers opportunities to meet with international experts, work with local nonprofits, participate in global conversations, explore international careers, and study abroad. The organization also provides events and forums to give people the opportunity to discuss international issues with experts in the field.
How did the MAIS program prepare you for your internship?
The MAIS program provided me with invaluable critical thinking, research, and writing skills that greatly enhanced my work at the organization. The program taught me how to be detail-oriented, and how to think outside the box. Moreover, the knowledge on global issues acquired during the program helped me evolve as an intern. I was able to communicate with experts in International Studies about political, economic, and social global issues.
What were some highlights of interning at this organization?
Interning at World Affairs was my first concrete professional experience in the US. The organization is an outstanding knowledge and networking platform for students interested in international issues. In my case, having had the opportunity to discuss American foreign policy with Samantha Power, former US ambassador at the UN, was priceless. Moreover, I was lucky to hear advice from Duncan Green, the Oxfam Senior strategy adviser, on how to impact change through an organization.
What did you gain from your experience?
My experience at World Affairs helped me understand the work of a non-profit organization and the different impacts of this particular organization. Since I aspire to be an actor of change in my country, as well as the African continent, the skills and knowledge I gained are definitely important contributions to achieve this dream. Moreover, meeting experts in the field of International Studies gave me an insiders perspective and knowledge about what it means to work in the field.
Finally, I acquired some useful planning skills that have helped me manage the African Union Club at USF, an on-campus organization for which I am the president. The club aims to foster the debate African political issues at USF.