Thursday, March 24, 2011

I got into both grad schools!

Hi y'all! Great news! I got into both grad schools I applied to: The New School's Milano School for Management, and NYU's Wagner School of Public Service. I have two weeks to decide between them, and it's going to be tough.

The New School's program would be a Master of Science in Nonprofit Management. The school and program have a lot going for them: I really clicked with the people there; it's a very social-justice-rooted program; it's specifically designed to help people do exactly what I want to do (run nonprofits); and perhaps most importantly, they're offering me quite a lot of money. However, no one's ever heard of them, and as a newer program they don't have the kind of institutional and alumni clout as other programs.

NYU's program would be a Master of Public Administration in Public and Nonprofit Management and Policy. They also have a lot going for them: They've got serious clout, funding, good repute, and mighty alumni. However, I didn't feel welcomed or inspired there, and they're offering me a smaller amount of money. I'm giving them another shot to convince me at the admitted students open house next week.

As you can see, I have a strong initial preference. But to go with my heart (I like them, they are nice!) or what seems to be a more responsible long-term institutional connection (they are powerful, they can help me be powerful too)?

Saturday, March 5, 2011

leads for summer internships?

I am hoping to do an internship this summer in Africa, and am wondering if you have any leads or contacts you could recommend to me. Specifically:

WHO: Me, Petra Aldrich. For those of you who don't know me, I am a current Masters candidate at Columbia University's School of International and Public Affairs in the Economic and Political Development department, specializing in Management. I have previous experience working in anti-human-trafficking in Thailand for one year for World Vision. I have interned this winter in Haiti with Explorers Sans Frontiers, a small Philladelphia-based NGO serving medical needs in Port-Au-Prince tent cities. I have further previous experience in NGO corporate and donor relations, volunteer management, and program management. A short version of my resume/CV is here: feel free to contact me for more information.

WHO ELSE: a mid-range to large international NGO like Oxfam, IRC, CARE, UN, Save the Children, or smaller but equally awesome ones I might not have heard of. I'd prefer organizations that directly serve the basic needs of impoverished communities.

WHAT: an internship, doing productive work in
a) program design, or monitoring and evaluation, or
b) any other aspects of development project implementation and management.

I'm more interested in programs addressing:
-refugee needs,
-gender issues,
-community health, and
and less interested in:
-medical clinics,
-legal, and
-finance assistance programs.

WHEN: This summer, between late May and the end of August, but perhaps not the entirety of that time.

WHERE: somewhere in English- or French-speaking Africa, preferably these countries which have a theoretical higher tolerance for lesbians:
-Rwanda (a top choice)
-Madagascar (a top choice)
-South Africa (a top choice)
-Kenya (but not Nairobi)
-Central African Republic
-Burkina Faso

Thanks for any leads or other help that you can offer in making my summer a productive one!

-Petra Aldrich