Raquel Silva

A Road under Construction: Building a Path in International Development

Interning at the African Women’s Development Fund in Ghana was an amazing opportunity that allowed me to use many aspects of my Mount Holyoke experience. From an all-female environment, to the team-work and heavy reading and writing load, I felt prepared and thrived this past summer. However, this internship has brought me to some realizations that I will share in this presentation. Although I possess certain skills, I noticed I need to complement them in order to successfully pursue a career in international development. A lot of “homework” needs to be done before becoming a professional: what are the next steps? I know I want to work with women and development, but this is still very broad: how to narrow it down? How to decide between an academic and a “hands-on” approach? Are international nonprofits the only way to go? This presentation will address these questions and reinforce the importance of mentorship, networking and proactivity in the process of leveraging current experience while constructing a path in international development.