Key Takeaways

It has now been a few weeks since my Department of State internship experience came to an end, and I want to reflect on a few key takeaways of this summer.

  1. I am confident about my ability to excel in an office environment. This was my first summer internship and my first time working a 9 to 5 job. I wasn’t sure what to expect, but looking back on the summer, I am proud of what I accomplished. On my last day, my supervisor and I sat down for a feedback session, and she had a plethora positive comments and virtually no negative ones. I am relieved that despite my lack of professional experience, I exceeded expectations at the State Department.
  2. I am more clear about my future career path. I enjoyed the work I did in the human rights bureau of the State Department, and I hope to work there sometime in the future. Although I want to work in the NGO sector as well, I think working for the government would be a more viable option after I have more work experience and maybe education down the road.
  3. I appreciate the value of academia. Sometimes, while sitting in a lecture hall on a Monday morning learning about political theories, it is easy to think “what is the point?!” And the truth is, I didn’t apply political theories to my work this summer. However, I recognized the value and applicability of the writing and analytical skills that my political science classes have taught me.
  4. In one way or another, I want to continue working in the human rights sphere. Specifically, I would like to do field work for an NGO out of college, if I can. I am passionate about educating girls, creating economic opportunities for women, and improving quality of life for refugees. This summer only enhanced my desire to strive towards empowering and giving a voice to the people at the lowest rungs of society.

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