I was stunned by how little could be done within the legal system to support people who had been deported from the US and was instead drawn to the power of the media to shape public discourse. I hope to build experience to one day write for a popular science magazine and work to bridge academia with outside communities.
Overall, I thoroughly enjoyed my internship experience and am heavily considering going into production following graduation. What I liked most about the role as an underwriter for a wholesaler was seeing the balance of multiple layers of responsibility. As a broker, it is important to maintain your relationships with both your carrier underwriters and with your agents. To gain trust from both sides, it is important to be an expert at what you do—be ethical, know your contracts and guidelines, and show integrity.
My summer in DC allowed me to see the inner-workings of a women-focused non-profit while giving me the flexibility to work on my thesis. Currently, I am in the process of applying to various law schools. I am plan to earn my J.D. and work for the government in some capacity, either in Florida or in DC.
I am incredibly grateful to the Social Science Scholars program for both the generous funding and the leadership training, which will benefit me throughout my life. My project was immensely valuable to my personal, educational, and professional experience. I am now well-versed in how I can combine my prior experience in public diplomacy and languages with environmental conservation, something I am extremely passionate about.
Post graduation, I aspire to pursue a career in the hybrid non-profit and social entrepreneurship space in the developing world. While I have suitable experience on the non-profit side of things through different involvements with NGOs over my previous summers, before this internship I had never been directly involved with profit-focused entities. Accordingly, my time with VGS and PrivySeal served as my first real-life exposure to the business world and helped fill my experience void. Because of this, I can say with complete confidence that this summer allowed for enormous personal and professional growth and has brought me significantly closer to my eventual career goals.
My experience in the Caux Scholars programs truly enriched my educational experience as an undergrad and has given me a plethora of new perspectives and ideas to share with my classmates. I was privileged to have been in such a unique and encouraging environment in Switzerland which allowed me to attain new levels of personal growth. Through this program I developed life long friendships with people all over the world and professional connections with many individuals in the conflict resolution field. This was a truly valuable and life changing experience.
From this experience I developed an interest in issues such as state policy capture, in which policy decisions are directed away from the public interest towards a specific interest and can undermine democratic values and trust in government. My summer experience has served to empower me achieve my goals of one day conducting research, writing, and lobbying for policy which protects civil liberties and mainstreams human rights with a regional focus of the Middle East and North Africa. I intend continue my education to assist in similar endeavors and high-level policy research and analysis at a broader level.
Due to the funding provided by the Social Science Scholars, and in particular my donor Marshall Cohn, I had some of the best experiences to last me a lifetime. I traveled to the former capitol Ayutthaya, went snorkeling in some of the clearest oceans I've ever seen, and even joined a football league (soccer in the U.S.). I’ve tried dishes I can’t pronounce and sang karaoke to Japan’s greatest hits. I’ve laughed with some really funny and kind people, and I’ve cried with those same people. Words can’t put into context the journey and fulfillment this opportunity has offered. I’m truly humbled to have had this experience and I believe it has changed me as a person.
I am incredibly grateful for the opportunity Social Science Scholars afforded me, and the chance to work with the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission this past summer. I was given opportunities to do work that I truly loved, and was given public recognition for it. I found a new passion—Malaysian religious freedom—and am on the cusp of being a major player in the international religious freedom industry.
I was in Brazil for just over two months, and spent most of the time visiting different quilombos in the region. Whenever Dr. Rocha was not sending me out into the field, I was shut away in her home library for hours on end, reading and unlearning much of what I had thought about race in Brazil prior. Apart from my mini-ethnography, there were many takeaways from my time in Brazil, and I must offer my sincerest thanks to Social Science Scholars and my supervisors, who guided me along the way.