Archive for IPSS

Friday, April 22nd, 2016

IPSS Fellow Shen Li’s Interview with the WTO

Shen Li

2016 IPSS Fellow Shen Li is currently interning in the Market Access Division of the World Trade Organization.  The WTO recently interviewed Shen for its newsletter – you can read the interview below.

Where are you from, and what did you study before joining the WTO?

I am from Beijing.  I did my Bachelor’s degree in China where I studied French.  Then I went to the US to do a Master’s degree in International Policy Studies – Trade, Investment and Development – at the Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey.

One of the reasons I am here as an intern is to earn academic credits for my school project.  I applied for an internship at the WTO because I am studying trade.  Also as I have studied French, Geneva is the perfect place to practise it.

When did you apply for the internship?

I have been planning the internship for a long time.  I would say that the WTO has fascinated me ever since I started to study trade two years ago.  I have always wondered what it would be like to work here.  At university, we had an international trade negotiation class where we simulated negotiations in the Doha Round, imitating the way WTO negotiations take place.  Whenever we wanted to raise some points or ask questions, we would raise a nameplate to speak.  It is amazing to find it is exactly the same here.

I submitted my application last October and I was really surprised when I received the internship offer in December.  This is my very first experience of professional life so it is a great starting point.  I am really excited and grateful to have this opportunity to learn about trade issues, the needs of developing countries and the challenges facing international trade.

You have been working in the Market Access Division since 1 February.  What kind of work have you been doing?

I am mostly working on the Trade Facilitation Agreement with Sheri Rosenow.  Last week we organized a donor event, where donor countries and international organizations introduced their programmes for helping developing countries implement the Agreement.  Once the Agreement is implemented, the international trade is going to flow much more smoothly.  So I feel like I am making a real contribution to world trade.  It’s so exciting.

In March, we had a workshop to help participants gain a better understanding of the Agreement so that their governments can ratify it sooner rather than later.  I helped to prepare the presentation and facilitated the workshop with other members of the Trade Facilitation Agreement Facility team.

How have you found life at the WTO so far?

I really like the atmosphere here because people are very open to other cultures.  Everyone in the Market Access Division is really nice.  I am also so pleased that we have a Volleyball Club at the WTO because I really love playing volleyball.  It is quite relaxing to play a game after work.  I haven’t met all the interns yet but we do have lunch together and sometimes we meet in the atrium for a coffee break and to have a chat.  It is a really nice opportunity to get to know people.

Is it your first time in Switzerland?

No, this is my second time.  As I studied French for my Bachelor’s degree, I undertook an exchange programme in Paris.  As an exchange student, I had quite a lot of holiday so I took the opportunity to travel, including to Switzerland.  I used to think that everywhere in Switzerland would be very peaceful, like it is by the lake, but after moving here I realize it is much busier than I thought.

What have you done for fun in Geneva?

I have tried a relaxing picnic by the lake with some friends.  I’ve also been to the chocolate festival, which was very interesting.  We tasted all kinds of chocolates and bought many different varieties.  It was a good way to spend the weekend.  I like Geneva because it feels very familiar here, having already lived in France for a year.  So there are not too many culture shocks and that has helped me adjust more quickly than I did in the US.

Last question: what are your plans for the future?

I think after this I will go to the US to finish my school project and graduate.  After that, I haven’t given it a lot of thought but I would welcome any opportunities involving international trade.  An international organization would be perfect but the private sector could also be interesting.

Wednesday, March 30th, 2016

From MIIS to IPSS & Beyond

IAEA_Photo_Tom Gray

Thomas Gray, NPTS 2015

IPSS 2015: International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)

It’s always inspiring to speak with current IPSS fellows in the field, but I’m also curious about where students end up afterwards and how their IPSS experience fits into their longer term career path.  Thomas Gray, a 2015 IPSS fellow and former NPTS student currently working at the IAEA in Vienna, graciously agreed to share his experiences and speak about his path from MIIS to IPSS and beyond.

MIIS to IPSS

Tom came to Monterey after six and a half years in the U.S. Navy.  As an incoming NPTS student, Tom knew he wanted to do a professional internship and had hopes for the IAEA due to his interest in international nuclear safeguards.  The connections that the James Martin Center for Nonproliferation Studies has with different international professional organizations and the history of MIIS interns at the IAEA were a large part of Tom’s motivation to attend MIIS.

Tom applied for an IPSS fellowship with the IAEA as a second year NPTS student.  Previously, the NPTS students from MIIS that had interned at the IAEA had all worked in the Office of Public Information.  However, the year Tom applied, a position in the Department of Safeguards was available– this was a stroke of luck for Tom, as it matched up with his interests even more.

IPSS and Beyond

After his four month IPSS fellowship at the IAEA, Tom began a yearlong graduate fellowship program in the Department of Energy’s National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) in Washington, D.C.  This is another opportunity frequently pursued by MIIS students: there are typically at least one or two former NPTS students per year.  During the NNSA fellowship, Tom found out about another fellowship newly established by the Office of Defense Nuclear Nonproliferation in honor of Dr. Ian Hutcheon, a scientist who worked for Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory.  This fellowship is a two-year assignment as a Junior Professional Officer in support of the IAEA’s  Division of Nuclear Security.  Tom was the first fellow selected – he decided to leave his fellowship with the NNSA a few months early in order to pursue this opportunity and go back to working with the IAEA.  When I spoke with him he had been on the job for a week and a half.

Current Work

Tom attributes his selection for his current fellowship in part to his previous experience at the IAEA, which also allowed him to hit the ground running upon his return.  Tom’s primary task at the moment is to help organize a conference that the IAEA is hosting at the end of 2016.  Right now is an important time for the IAEA’s Division of Nuclear Security.  Eight years ago, Obama announced the Prague Agenda, his plan to secure the world’s nuclear material from use in terrorism.  According to the plan, a nuclear security summit has been hosted every two years since.  The last summit is happening this month in D.C.  The IAEA has been identified as one of the institutions responsible for continuing the progress made over the last 8 years, and the conference Tom is organizing will set the tone for how the international community sees nuclear security continuing after the Obama Administration.

Tom’s Advice

For NPTS students, IPSS can be a strategic choice because NPTS is a field where you need connections…  you never know who will lead to a job.  The NPTS field can be a hard field to break into and a strong professional network is critical.  If you decide to do IPSS, Tom recommends setting your internship up for as long as possible.  The first few months at any job involve a steep learning curve; the more time you have at your internship, the more time you’ll have to apply what you learned in those first few months and the more time you’ll have to impress your new boss.

Wednesday, March 16th, 2016

IPSS fellow Danny Pavitt speaks about his work at Conservation International

Danny

IPD student and IPSS fellow Danny Pavitt is currently in the field working as an Environmental Peacebuilding Intern at Conservation International.  Conservation International (CI) has been around for 30 years and was established with a vision that included not only the conservation of nature, but also the well-being of humans in relation to nature.  As Danny puts it, the overarching mission of CI is to promote healthy ecosystems globally and improve human well-being (ensuring a healthy, productive planet for everybody).

At CI, Danny is one of four staff members working in the Peace and Development Partnerships department of the Policy Center.  Environmental peacebuilding is at the intersection of capacity development, conflict resolution, and environmental conservation.  One of the central goals of the Environmental Peacebuilding Department is to raise awareness about the interconnectedness of conservation and peacebuilding.  Environmental conservation is not impossible in conflict areas; you can actually use environmental peacebuilding to mitigate conflict.  Promoting healthy ecosystems and mitigating conflict are not mutually exclusive and in fact can work more effectively in tandem.

Danny is currently working with his team to develop a training manual for global field staff to help them better incorporate conflict-sensitive programming.  The manual will have about 10 modules that are all parts of environmental peacebuilding and will address questions such as: How can we analyze conflict that exists? and How can we tie in different parts of environmental peacebuilding?  So far, Danny has completed a Conflict Analysis Module.  This module is helps engage local stakeholders in a conversation in order to become as informed as possible about situations of conflict in a given area.  The idea is that if you understand the situation, conflict, root causes, and main players, you can implement sustainable conservation programs while being conflict-sensitive.

Danny describes his experience at CI as full of learning.  He notes that “it’s been really eye-opening to be in an organization that’s so well-established in what it does and in the field” and has enjoyed collaborating with people who are influential in the environmental conservation world.  Since starting at CI, Danny has realized how connected everything is: “It’s no longer just about environmental conservation – you can’t really think about environmental conservation without thinking about gender, equality, capacity development, infrastructural growth, the economy, international development…  These things are no longer separate for me and they never will be.”

Danny took a leap of faith after his first semester at MIIS and decided to enroll in the 2015 Summer Peacebuilding Program despite being totally new to the subject matter.  This experience opened his eyes to the opportunities out there surrounding environmental peacebuilding.  Some of the courses at MIIS that prepared him for his current work include Organizational Sustainability with Professor Ortiz and Human Security and Development with Professor Laurance.  Danny encourages current MIIS students to explore different and intriguing things they’re curious about but don’t necessarily have experience in (like the Summer Peacebuilding Program for him).  Danny got to his current position by really putting himself out there to explore and understand different parts of international development and to figure out what he didn’t want to do.  In his role now, he enjoys what he’s doing so much it doesn’t even feel like work.

For a glimpse into the work of Conservation International, check out their Nature is Speaking advertising campaign.

Friday, March 11th, 2016

IEP student Whitney Berry to present on behalf of the International Union for Conservation of Nature

geneva

This April, International Environmental Policy student and IPSS fellow Whitney Berry will be presenting at a Geneva workshop titled, “The Application of Genomic Tools for Benthic Monitoring of the Marine Environment: From Technology to Legal and Socio-Economical Aspects.”   She will be giving a presentation at the Natural History Museum in Geneva on behalf of the IUCN, the organization she is working with as an IPSS fellow.  The workshop is sponsored by the Swiss National Science Foundation and the University of Geneva.

More About the Workshop

Rapidly increasing impacts of industrial activities on marine biodiversity strongly affects marine ecosystem health and services. Yet, the growing demand for measuring and mitigating these impacts can hardly be satisfied by classical monitoring based on morphological species identification. New genomic tools based on analysis of environmental DNA (eDNA) could potentially overcome these limitations, but their application for biomonitoring is still very limited. The main objective of the workshop is to examine the effectiveness of eDNA method for seabed monitoring from ecological, legal and socio-economic perspectives. The workshop will discuss the need to modify regulatory requirements and legal instruments for incorporating eDNA data into biotic indices. The participants will also learn about the advantages and challenges of using the eDNA to explore biodiversity and valuing ecosystem services. The event will bring together molecular biologists, ecologists, environmental managers and policy makers interested in integrating genomic tools in environmental impact assessment of industrial activities in marine environment.

 

Check out Whitney’s blog for a firsthand account of her experiences as an IPSS fellow at the IUCN.

Thursday, March 10th, 2016

Reminder: Apply for IPSS 2017 by March 31st

IPSS 2017! (1)

Wednesday, February 3rd, 2016

IPSS, IONP, DPMI Plus, IEM Practicum, FMS, and Student Exchange Placements for 2016 Announced

Screen Shot 2016-01-11 at 3.27.24 PMFor spring 2016, a total of 61 Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey students will participate in our distinguished semester long immersive learning programs, to be placed around the country and the globe. Domestically, students are as close as the San Francisco Bay area and as far away as Washington, D.C. Internationally, they are spread across five continents.

Programs include the International Professional Service Semester (IPSS), the International Organizations and Nonproliferation Program (IONP), DPMI Plus, the International Education Management (IEM) Practicum , the Student Exchange Program, and the Frontier Market Scouts (FMS) Program.

Below is a list of current participants, their organizations, and their locations.

 

International Professional Service Semester (IPSS)

Name

Placement

Location

Shen Li WTO Geneva, Switzerland
Melis Okter CA Sea Grant: Coastal Commission San Francisco, CA
Jennifer Adams State Dept. ASST SEC, OCEANS & INT L ENVIR  & SCI AFFS and Montery Bay Aquarium Policy Division Washington, D.C.
Emma Tonge NOAA Oakland, CA
Mairi MacEachern UNGC Network office Toronto, Canada
Whitney Berry IUCN Geneva, Switzerland
Zachary Foco FAO Rome, Italy
Marina Binsack San Francisco Bay Joint Venture Sacramento, CA
Sophia Kirschenman Conservation International Social Policy and Practice Division Washington, D.C.
Thomas Stagg NOLS Patagonia Chile
Jamie Stanton UNIDIR Geneva, Switzerland
Elin Orre UNODA CAB New York, NY
Hussain Alhowaidi UN Office at Geneva: Biological Weapons Convention Implementation Support Unit Geneva, Switzerland
Margaret Coleman US State Bureau of Human Rights, Democracy, and
Labor
Washington, D.C.
Daniel Pavitt Conservation International Peace and Development Partnerships Washington, D.C.
Miranda Salinas Alliance for Peacebuilding Washington, D.C.
Li Ma Stimson Center Washington, D.C.
Kathleen Lucitt IRS Criminal Investigations Branch (International Operations division) Washington, D.C.
Stephanie Gentle IUCN SEE Belgrade, Serbia
Jenny Cho Council on Foreign Relations Washington, D.C.
Phil Goldstein Department of Defense/Pentagon Washington, D.C.
Emily Summerlin San Francisco Business Council on Climate Change San Francisco, CA

International Organizations and   Nonproliferation Program (IONP)

Name

Placement

Location

Hussein Alhowaidi United Nations
Implementation Support Unit of the Convention on the Prohibition of the Development, Production and Stockpiling of Bacteriological and Toxin Weapons and on Their Destruction (BWC)
Geneva, Switzerland
Geraldine Mande United Nations Office of Disarmament Affairs (UNODA) New York, NY
Satomi Tamura United Nations Conference on Disarmament (CD) Geneva, Switzerland
Irene Yu Preparatory Commission for the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty Organization (CTBTO) Vienna, Austria

DPMI Plus

Name

Placement

Location

Judie Henderson Rwandan Ministry of Agriculture and Animal Resources (MINAGRI) Rwanda
Laura Preston Peace Corps Cameroon
Madison Shepard SHE-CAN Mill Valley, CA
Sophie Dresser OneVillage Partners Sierra Leone
Jeanine Willig Social Impact Washington, D.C.
Alina Aslanian International Organization for Migration Bangkok, Thailand
Sonia Esquibel Catholic Relief Services Zambia
Karla Gregorio Program Fellow Oakland, CA
Susan Asselin Peace Corps Senegal
Alcide Guillory III GSIPM Immersive Learning Team Monterey, CA
Julia Meli International Organization for Migration or Search for Common Ground Middle East and North Africa
Tom  Ford Peace Corps Nicaragua
Amanda Kruse

Peace Corps

Burkina Faso

International Education Management (IEM) Practicum

Name

Placement

Location

Kaela Conroy Brown University – Office of International Programs Providence, RI
Tessa Fancher Middlebury College Middlebury, VT
Maria Gleason-Maddox University of Wisconsin-Whitewater Center for Global Education Madison, WI
Michelle Gloster PLUS Education U.S. Corp USA
Talia Gottlieb Pearson College UWC Canada
Emily Greenblatt Intercultural Communication Institute  Portland
Alcide Guillory III GSIPM Immersive Learning Team Monterey, CA
Courtney Jackson American International Recruitment Council (AIRC) Bethesda, MD
Sydney McLoughlin  To be determined
Peter Seilheimer California State University at Monterey Bay Monterey, CA
Abbey Wallace CIEE Portland, ME

Student Exchange Programs

Name

Placement

Location

Jordan Fernandez Middlebury Schools Abroad Amman, Jordan
Janet Addoh Middlebury Schools Abroad Madrid, Spain
Eli Hatch Waseda University Tokyo, Japan

Frontier Market Scouts (FMS)

Name

Placement

Location

Julianne Scott Pulsera Project Granada, Nicaragua
Tony Chow  To be determined
Angelina Skowronski  To be determined
Ben Grimmig  To be determined
Clover van Steenberghe  To be determined
Kenji Tabery  To be determined
Nenneya Shields  To be determined
Sherry Sybertz  To be determined

Best of luck to all of you!!!

Monday, January 4th, 2016

Internship advice from former IPSS and DPMI Plus Fellows

Screen Shot 2015-12-17 at 10.33.30 AMIPPSers and DPMI Plusers will soon begin a new adventure at their internships in Geneva, Washington D.C, New York City, San Francisco, Chile, and Zambia.  These respective internships are essentially an audition for work at UNHCR, the State Department, the Peace Corps, Catholic Relief Services, the IAEA, and/or the IUCN to name a few.

As this years fellows are not the first to embark on such an adventure, we would like to share advice from last years cohort.

Last year, we asked fellows, what challenges did you experience that MIIS didn’t really prepare you for?

IPSS and DPMI Plus Fellows mentioned the following challenges:Screen Shot 2015-12-17 at 1.16.29 PM

-email chains with over 10 cc’ed co-workers and navigating who to cc on which email.

-saying yes to everything and taking on too much

-social media management

-not being assertive about project selection

How can IPSS and DPMI Plus fellows mitigate these challenges?

IPSS and DPMI Plus 2015 fellows offered the following suggestions:

  1. Have a strong backbone
  2. Stay organized
  3. Keep an open mind
  4. Don’t take on too much
  5. Manage your expectations
  6. Be creative and come up with an innovative project proposal
  7. Remember that knowledge gained at MIIS is not the end-point
  8. Learn office culture and adjust your style accordingly
  9. Send an introductory email with a list of your skills and interests
  10. Nurture relationships.

Forbes, LinkedIn, and TED also have a number of recommendations:

  1. Ten ways interns can create a great first impression
  2. TED Talk with Amy Cuddy: Your body language shapes who you are 
  3. The ultimate intern to-do list 
  4. 6 simple steps to make a good first impression 

 

Tuesday, November 17th, 2015

Still looking for January workshops?

Screen Shot 2015-11-13 at 4.51.42 PMDid you know that all MIIS students are able to take International Professional Service Semester workshops this January?

IPSS workshops include: High Value Organizational Consulting, Designing and Evaluating Interventions, Quantitative Analysis with Excel, and Applied Qualitative Data Collection and Analysis.

In Applied Qualitative Data Collection and Analysis(IPSS 8531 A, 1 Credit, Pass/Fail) January 6-7, 2016 with Instructor Erika Takada, “Participants will design an intervention with an accompanying monitoring and evaluation (M&E) system.”

In Designing and Evaluating Interventions(IPSS 8533 A, 1 Credit, Pass/Fail) January 9-10, 2016 with Instructor Emily Morris, “Students will learn and practice key methods of applied qualitative data collection and analysis.”

In High Value Organizational Consulting (IPSS 8530 A, 1-2 Credit, Pass/Fail) January 14-15, 2016 with Instructor Beryl Levinger, “Participants will learn tools for analyzing an organization, its culture, its approach to meeting mission, and ecosystem analysis.”

In Quantitative Analysis with Excel (IPSS 8532 A, 1 Credit, Pass/Fail) January 16-17, 2016 with Instructor Kevin Lorenzi, “Students will improve their understanding and abilities to collect and analyze data using Microsoft Excel.”

These professional skills workshops are open to students and professionals outside of the IPSS program, space permitting.  Please email ipss@miis.edu to express interest.

Friday, September 11th, 2015

IPSS Info Session this Tuesday

globalization-globe

This Tuesday, September 15th, there will be an informational session about the International Professional Service Semester (IPSS).  The IPSS program is offered through the Graduate School of International Policy and Management (GSIPM) during the Spring Semester.  IPSS is an immersive learning experience, in which fellows secure internships with international organizations in the US and abroad and earn up to 12 units of academic credit.  This session will cover IPSS requirements, syllabi, and stories from Spring 2015 IPSS fellows.

When: Tuesday, September 15th

Time: 12-1pm

Where: Morse B106

To learn more information about IPSS visit go.miis.edu/ipss or email ipss@miis.edu

Friday, September 4th, 2015

IPSS Fellow Cervando Banuelos worked to verify and deter state sponsored cyber attacks

Cervando Banuelos

Cervando graduated from the Institute in August 2015 with a masters in Non-proliferation and Terrorism Studies and is now pursuing a masters degree in Computer Science at the Naval Post Graduate School.

IPSS Fellow Cervando Banuelos, worked at the Verification Research Training and Information Center (VERTIC) in London this past spring.  Based on his experience at VERTIC, Cervando believes, “Cyber security is an issue in economics, finance, infrastructure, nuclear power, and his ability to view adorable kittens online.  In other words, cyber security is now a fundamental part of everything.”

The question is, can we stop all  cyber attacks today with a deterrence agreement?  Unfortunately, no we can’t.

Cervando believes that our first step should be to deter state-sponsored cyber attacks, “these are attacks carried out by foreign government agents and members of foreign intelligence communities and they could be for disruption, theft or damage.  And I say that an agreement for the deterrence of state sponsored cyber attacks with international cooperation and an overseeing and enforcing body, and compliance through verification would limit the amount of attacks and the destructiveness of the attacks.”

Read an article that Cervando co-wrote during his IPSS fellowship at Vertic, in Trust and Verify, Issue 148.

Thursday, September 3rd, 2015

IPSS Fellow Victoria Bell tracked illegal, unreported, and unregulated fishing(IUU)

Victoria Bell

Victoria Bell recently completed her IPSS fellowship and graduated from the Institute with a masters degree in International Environmental Policy.

Victoria Bell believes, “Illegal, Unreported, and Unregulated (IUU) fishing is a global problem that threatens ocean ecosystems and proves to be a food security, human security, and economic issue.”

For her IPSS fellowship, Victoria worked as an Ocean Policy Fellow at the Marine Conservation Institute in Washington, D.C. in an effort to accurately assess the issue of IUU fishing that generates over 20 billion dollars annually.

Victoria’s fellowship was unique because it coincided with the start of the 114th Congress.  Her task was to push a bill first proposed by Madeline Bordallo of Guam to regulate illegal, unreported, and unregulated fishing (IUU).

Victoria participated in a team effort to rally democrats and republicans in the House of Representatives and the Senate to sponsor a bill that will lessen the economic incentive for IUU fishing.  In order to make her pitch, Victoria became very familiar with IUU fishing stories including those of egregious human trafficking offenses of the Bandit 6 that Sea Shepard had been tracking in the southern ocean.

Victoria shared, “this current Congress is as close to passing (IUU) legislation as we have ever come and it’s very exciting.”  Victoria and her team were responsible for 15 members of Congress that have co-sponsored IUU legislation. Read more about her fellowship on her IPSS student profile page>>>

Wednesday, September 2nd, 2015

IPSS Fellow Theresa Gauvreau worked to improve legal apparatuses in Pakistan

Theresa Gauvreau Picture

IPSS Fellow Theresa Gauvreau recently completed her last IPSS deliverable and graduated from the Middlebury Institute with a Masters degree in International Policy Studies with a concentration in Human Security and Development.

Theresa Gauvreau, 2015 Dunspaugh Dalton recipient spent her last semester at the Middlebury Institute as an International Professional Service Semester Fellow and worked for the State Department’s Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs (INL) in the office of Pakistan.

Gauvreau was tasked with strengthening  legal education programs in Pakistan to improve the capacity of legal apparatuses, improve student’s opportunities and their access to practical training. She was also involved in an initiative to improve conditions for female police officers.

Through her IPSS experience at the Bureau,  Theresa has gained new skill sets and the insider knowledge desired for a top level State Department employee.  She is currently pursuing a career as a U.S. diplomat in the Foreign Service.

Interested in learning more about former IPSS participants?  Check out our student profiles page>>>

Friday, August 14th, 2015

Congratulations to 2015 IPSS Graduating Fellows

Miis_flags

 

Congratulations 2015 IPSS fellows! 

This Spring, 30 International Professional Service Semester fellows set off to work in Austria, Italy, Myanmar, Namibia, Peru, Romania, Samoa, Switzerland, Thailand, the United Kingdom, Washington D.C., and Monterey County.  These students worked for some of the most well known organizations in the international policy world, including The United Nations Development Program, UN Women, The Food and Agriculture Organization, The World Trade Organization, World Wildlife Fund, The North Atlantic Treaty Organization, The Marine Conservation Institute, The International Atomic Energy Agency and the International Organization for Migration.

IPSS fellows have written that their internships were tremendously valuable, both academically and professionally.  Students were able to expand on their academic studies through trainings, conferences, and field-research.

Several of these semester long internships have resulted in job offers for IPSS 2015 fellows!  We wish all fellows the best in their new careers!

 

Tuesday, August 4th, 2015

MIIS IPSS Fellow Liz Martinis researches financial inclusion in Peru

For her IPSS fellowship, Liz Martinis worked with the Andean Alliance for Sustainable Development and conducted field research with IPSS fellow, Gaelen Hayes.

 

Imagine hiking up a mountain, finally arriving to a house, flipping a coin that ultimately lands heads instead of tails, and continuing up the mountain to the next house. Such research has been conducted using dice and flipping a coin in order to maintain randomization. For the last 6 months, IPSS fellow and Dunspaugh Dalton recipient Liz Martinis has been hiking around the Sacred Valley of Peru conducting research centered on financial access and inclusion.  Fortunately, Liz has had the support of IPSS fellow Gaelen Hayes and the Andean Alliance for Sustainable Development, a non-profit started by MIIS Alumni, Aaron Ebner and Adam Stieglitz, to conduct this immersive research project.

Liz’s interest in the region began with an initial research project with Team Peru in January 2014.  Since then, she’s been determined to learn more about financial culture within historically marginalized communities.  She believes that, “a key asset for insuring health of communities is access to financial resources.  These resources allow families to invest in livelihoods, education, and health, as well as fortifying them against unexpected shocks and times of hardship.”  Through her research with Hayes, Liz has experienced surprises and challenges in the field, and her study has evolved based on responses from surveys, focus groups, and semi-structured interviews.  Ultimately, her hope is to “help families gain resources which can be used in a manner they deem most beneficial.”  Read more about her findings here.

 

Thursday, June 18th, 2015

MIIS Center for the Blue Economy fellow gets surprise visit from MIIS staff at Nairobi UNEP Headquarters

IMG_1707On the day of my departure from Nairobi, I ventured to the Gigiri neighborhood of Nairobi to visit the 140 acre United Nations Office in Nairobi (UNON). The complex houses over 20 UN offices including the headquarters for the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) and UN Human Settlements Programme (UN-Habitat). Both UNEP and UN-Habitat headquarters were established in Nairobi in the late 1970s.

After you pass through UNON security you are greeted by a beautiful winding walking path lined with international flags ending at life-size bronze elephants and 10 meter high “KaribuUN” letters. The compound offers the chance of observing local wildlife such as red duikers, squirrels, marsh mongoose, vervet monkeys and olive baboons.

As I toured the conference center, I made my way to the new UNEP offices to visit our unsuspecting Center for the Blue Economy Fellow, Emma Tonge, currently serving as an intern on the Marine Litter Project. Emma follows in the footsteps of 2015 CBE fellow, Kelsey Richardson (IEP ’05) whose summer 2014 UNEP Marine Litter Project research is now being used in two published UNEP reports including: “Valuing Plastics: The Business Case for Measuring, Managing and Disclosing Plastic Use in the Consumer Goods Industry” and a second report on the use of microplastics in personal care and cosmetics products. Kelsey is now serving as a MIIS International Professional Service Semester (IPSS) fellow at the Secretariat of Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP) in Apia, Samoa.

Click here to read more

Thursday, June 18th, 2015

MIIS IPSS alumnus tracks illicit weapons trading around the world

Jonah_Leff_UN_Weapons_Inspector
Information provides governments and policymakers with arms data previously never available.

It was my first year working at the Middlebury Institute of International Studies (MIIS) at Monterey when I met MIIS IPS ’06 alumnus Jonah Leff. He was studying the effects of conventional and small arms violence under the tutelage of MIIS professor Edward Laurance, a pioneer in the field of small arms and light weapons trade treaties and research. Jonah was also a fellow serving an internship at the United Nations Office for Disarmament Research (UNODA) through the MIIS International Professional Service Semester (IPSS) program. The IPSS program is designed to help students jump-start their careers through junior-level internships in their field during their final semester of graduate schoo.

Jonah currently serves as Director of Operations at Conflict Armament Research and is based out of Nairobi, Kenya (where we recently met). It’s been wonderful reconnecting with Jonah over the years and to see the MIIS and Middlebury College students he has supported in entering the important field of preventing armed violence.

Click here to read more

Wednesday, March 25th, 2015

IPSS Fellow Blog Featured on LinkedIn

Aileen Yang

Check out current IPSS fellow and International Policy Studies student at MIIS, Aileen Yang’s blog article featured on LinkedIn.  Aileen is spending her last semester at MIIS as an intern at the World Trade Organization (WTO) as a distinguished IPSS fellow.  She is blogging about her experience in Geneva, relevance of MIIS classroom simulations, and life at the WTO.

You can check out the story here, https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/from-simulations-reality-interns-reflection-aileen-yang?trk=hb_ntf_MEGAPHONE_ARTICLE_POST

Thursday, March 12th, 2015

Follow a Current IPSS Fellow’s Blog

 

 

Tom Gray, is in the Nonproliferation & Terrorism Studies (NPTS) graduate program here at MIIS.  His final semester at MIIS he is working at the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) in Vienna, Austria as an IPSS fellow.  Follow his journey through his blog, Every Wich Way.

Tom’s Blog offers an insightful perspective of what it is like working for a large international organization in the nonproliferation domain.

Enjoy the Blog!

http://sites.miis.edu/everywichway/

 

Thursday, February 5th, 2015

Analyst Program with the World Bank Group

 

Check out this great opportunity with the World Bank Group!

 

Picture1

 

 

 

 

Thursday, January 29th, 2015

Upcoming Info Sessions for IPSS, DPMI, and Tunisia

IPSS 2016

http://www.miis.edu/academics/monterey-abroad/service-semester

Info Session: Thursday, February 12, 2015, 12-1pm @MG100

Application Deadline: September 1st, 2015

 

DPMI, DPMI +

http://www.miis.edu/academics/short/development-management

Info Session: Thursday, Feb 26, 2015, 12-1pm @CF452

Application Deadline:

Summer 2015: Early Review – March 1st, 2015; General Application Deadline – April 1st, 2015

Winter 2016: Early Review – September 1st, 2015; General Application Deadline – October 31st, 2015

 

Tunisia’s Transition to Democracy – June 2015

http://www.globalmajority.org/, and more info here.

Info Session: Tuesday, February 10, 2015, 12-1pm @ MG100

Application Deadline: May 1st, 2015