Anna Feigum, GMAIR ’12, Cohort 2 (Vienna, Bangkok, Geneva, London, Leiden)
GMAIR Graduation: July 18, 2012
“Whether this program is right for you depends on your personal experiences and goals...This program is partially about learning your options and opportunities for career paths, as we visit a great deal of varying organizations in every city. Aligned with this, the program itself is a fairly broad one, aimed to familiarize us with the different aspects of international relations (humanitarian issues, the UN, regional studies, etc).
This program is definitely a trying and rewarding one… New academic topics coupled with the day-to-day stresses of living in unfamiliar places - and I even traveled/studied abroad a few times as St. Olaf College - has absolutely fostered personal growth, both intellectually and in gaining a better understanding of myself.
If you want what you learn in the classroom to apply to your everyday world, travel and gain experience in unfamiliar situations, I would recommend the global program...I can assure you that this was one of the best decisions I have ever made.”
Carly Timm, GMAIR ’11, Cohort 2 (Vienna, Bangkok, Geneva, London, Leiden)
Consultant - Asia Pacific Forum for Environment and Development
(APFED) Showcase Programme and Delivering as One Initiative
United Nations Environment Programme, Regional Office for Asia and the Pacific
“Don't be intimidated if you have not traveled internationally...I had never left the States before I did this program. One big word of advice...pack light! I survived on one suitcase that passed the weight requirements for flying in Europe. This made my life so much easier...if you over pack, it limits your mobility between campuses when you have a few days to travel.
All of the extra activities and opportunities to interact with professionals that Webster provides students with are just as important as your classes. Take every chance you get to chat with speakers you go to see, get business cards, send out thank you emails to people from organizations that give presentations to you. For example, go to as many Chatham House events as you can in London, and if you come to Bangkok, join the Foreign Correspondents Club of Thailand. I made excellent connections with people I met at these events. The Global program puts you in the right places to be able to make these connections, but you have to do the leg work!
The Global program gives you a great in-depth 'base' of International Relations knowledge. This was perfect for me, seeing as my undergraduate degree was not in this field. However, when it comes to your individual choices for research topics, papers, and presentations throughout the year, try to keep your research focused to one particular area. In the job market, just having a good knowledge of International Relations is not enough. You have to show that you can take this broad knowledge and apply it to something. For example, just about every paper I wrote throughout the year addressed an international relations issue through an environmental lens. I looked at regional cooperation, international rivers, coastal management, fisheries policies. Basically I narrowed my scope; I took what I was learning in International Relations and applied it to my field of interest.”
11 months | 5 countries | 1 university