Archive for Events

Tuesday, December 5th, 2017

IEM Spotlight: Dan Solomon

Daniel Solomon is a graduate student at the Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey (MIIS).  He is currently interning within Intercultural Learning at CIEE, fulfilling the practicum portion of his master’s program in International Education Management.  He has been living in Valparaíso, Chile, and working out of the CIEE study center in Valparaíso, since July of this year.

This interview was kindly conducted by Martha Shtapura-Ifrah, Center Director, Haifa

Title: Intercultural Learning Intern
Hometown: Arlington Heights, Illinois
M: Where are you from originally?  Where have you lived?

D: Originally, I am from the suburbs of Chicago, though I’ve lived mostly outside of Chicago since 2009. I lived in Israel for one year as a community service volunteer and an event coordinator. I came back to the US for the holidays in 2010 while I was waiting for my working holiday visa for New Zealand to come through. Originally that experience was supposed to be for a year, but I obtained another visa and stayed for 2 years. I later did some travelling across the U.S. and Southeast Asia on the way to Australia, where I did another work and holiday visa for a year. When I came back to the US this time I decided that I wanted to take my international living experience and apply it towards a future career in international education.

While I was job searching, I began working for Cirque du Soleil and traveled with them for almost a year. Later in the run, I started to apply for graduate schools with international programs and I was accepted into the International Education Management program at the Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey.

M: What was your bachelor’s degree in?

D: My bachelor’s degree was in visual communication with a minor in marketing. My life, prior to the travelling described before, was in live entertainment where I worked in customer service and event coordination.

M: I feel like you have what I call “the travelling virus.”

D: Yes, that would be accurate. That was instilled in me from childhood. My father, growing up in Chicago, always wanted to drive and see other parts of the country. I think when he was a kid they made one trip out to California and that was all he got. So, when I was old enough, I think I was 10, we made our first road trip. Every year my dad would look at a map and pick a different direction away from Chicago and that was the direction we would go. In my childhood I got to see a large part of the country through the windows of the minivan and that obviously carried on to the rest of my life.

M: How did you come to Chile? What was your incentive?

D: When it came time to actually look into practicum placements, I was focused on an institute of higher education in the US. My goal is to work in a study abroad office, to encourage students to take advantage of the opportunity to study abroad, so I wasn’t thinking about doing an international practicum or working with a program provider. One of my professors who came to know me well over the year in Monterey, including my interest in intercultural development, sent me information on an intercultural learning internship with CIEE. I had completed a course with this professor during J term where we went on site visits to universities, program providers, and branch campuses at different sites in Madrid and CIEE’s orientation session was the site visit that most impressed me. At that point, I got in touch with Elsa and we talked about what an internship would look like. The options presented to me where working remotely from the U.S., going to the CIEE offices in Portland, or coming to Valparaíso. An important component for me was being in an environment where students are, so it made sense to want to be on-site.  In addition, this region of South America topped my personal travel wish list and would allow me to continue developing my Spanish language skills.

M. How has your experience been so far?

D. It’s been great. Certainly there were challenges, especially with the language. I studied Spanish in high school for three years, but I hadn’t studied Spanish for over 15 years before my graduate degree. One of the highlights at MIIS is that they require a language as part of the program. They allowed me to do a summer language intensive program, a year’s worth of college Spanish in 8 weeks, before starting my degree program and that’s what really sent me on this path. Without that, I wouldn’t have been able to go to Madrid, and I wouldn’t have been able to come here to Chile. Even with that, the Chilean way of speaking, which drops some of the consonants like the “d” or the “s” sounds at the end of words, and adds a lot of slang or colloquial words that have origins in the indigenous populations, has taken getting used to.

M: Have you noticed any differences in nonverbal communication as well?

D: When I’m on public transportation, there’s more acceptance of physical contact than there would be in the US.

M: Can you describe the family that you lived with?

D: I live with my host mom, Rosa, two of her sons, and a “nephew” who is the son of one of Rosa’s good friends. He’s going to school in the area, but he is from the north of the country. So there’s 4 of us.

M: And how was the experience in the beginning? A bit awkward?

D. Yes, I think it was a bit awkward at the start. The first day that I moved in, the grandmother passed away. I think that one of the good things that came out of me being a new person that joined their family is that it was an

opportunity where all of the family members from both the extreme north and extreme south ends of Chile came together in the middle to celebrate the life of their mother and grandmother and I got to meet the family all together in one place. I come into the house after a walk and I am greeted by 30 people doing karaoke. That was my welcome to the family.

M: I wanted to ask you what you’ve learned about your host culture and your own culture but first we need to define what your culture is. How would you define yourself culturally?

D: I am definitely American in a lot of ways. As much as I’ve travelled, and consider myself understanding of cultural differences, I am still very heavily on the individualist side, and that is an American trait. It was me deciding on my own to leave the US and go live in Israel, or New Zealand, or Australia. Coming here and being part of this culture in Chile, a collectivist culture, I like it. My ancestors came from Russia, from a more collectivist society, and I see that in a lot of what my mom says or what my grandparents said. It was nice to come to Chile and be part of that, to live in a host family where at least once a week the family gets together for a big meal. Either we’re having the meal in our house or it’s an opportunity to go visit one of Rosa’s friends or family friends because it is ingrained into the culture here. Lunch is a big part of that. In many U.S. offices work is the most important thing. A lot of times you go and get lunch, and then sit by your desk and just keep working. You don’t really take time out to have a real lunch. Here, between 1 o’clock and 2 o’clock, everyone stops what they’re doing and we all spend an hour having lunch together in the office. It’s definitely something to appreciate. I think that my next stop, when I leave here and go back to the U.S. for my next job, that would be a difficult readjustment. “What do you mean I have this half an hour lunch break that I need to take by myself?”

M: Did you learn anything new about yourself while being an intern?

D: I’ve learned that I can survive in a Spanish speaking environment. It is nice that I have this other language skill and that I don’t have to rely on someone else’s level of English.

M: What are some of the most meaningful projects that you were involved with?

D: Going over IDI data from the Spring 2017 semester and breaking that information out by study center, by region, and by demographics of the students. In addition, looking at the ICL course evaluations that we were able to collect and looking at student feedback. Those were all incorporated into the Academic Affairs Outcome Report. The second project is the newsletter and that’s been really good as a way to have contact with some of the instructors in different parts of the world who are doing the Embedded Intercultural Component, who are running the ICL, or who are willing to do interviews with interns for newsletters. What I’m starting to work on, Elsa and I are going to facilitate a training for staff to run the Embedded, or a variation of that. And that will be, I think, the most rewarding component of my internship. It is just in the early stages at this point.

M: what have you learned significantly from the internship?

D: it’s almost been like another intercultural communication course for me. I took the Embedded Intercultural Component course myself and now I am looking into being able to adapt that and facilitate that for this next round. The ICL course didn’t run in Valparaíso, but I had access to all the facilitation notes and the readings so it’s been good for me to have the opportunity to continue my own personal training and to have access to different articles and resources that I didn’t have during my degree program. I think that has been one of the largest components of my learning, a continued personal development of my intercultural sensitivity.

M: What has been the highlight of your internship so far?

D: The people. I work in a wonderful office and everyone’s been, even from the start, extremely welcoming of me here. And those lunches help, we have all that time to spend together and have conversations and get to know each other. I enjoy coming in and saying hello to everybody. In Chile you greet people by touching your right cheek to their right cheek. It’s something you don’t usually do with people you don’t know well in the US, what would be considered intimate contact. But here, even if I meet someone for the first time, if I am introduced to someone at work or in my host family, that’s how we greet each other.

M: If you could summarize in one word your total experience in Chile, what would you say?

D: I would say enlightening. Being an older student in graduate school, and now being here and living with a host family and working on these projects, it’s like I’ve had the opportunity to do a real study abroad experience with all the information that I have now on how to adjust and how to go through the stages of cultural transition. I think that everything that I’m going through and experiencing in my time in Chile will be valuable in my being able to see this from a student’s perspective and being able to support them throughout their  study abroad journey with empathy, knowledge, and sound advice.

Thursday, November 30th, 2017

IPSS 2018 January Pre-Departure Workshops Announced

The International Professional Service Semester (IPSS) program at MIIS recently announced its January 4 -17, 2018 workshop schedule. A summary of workshop offerings is as follows:

High-Value Organizational Consulting (IPSS 8530 A, 1-2 credits, Pass/Fail) Jan 4-5, 9:00am-5:00pm

This workshop will be taught by organizational expert and successful government, nonprofit, and private-sector consultant, Dr. Beryl Levinger.  Participants will learn tools for analyzing an organization, its culture, its approach to meeting mission, and ecosystem analysis.  They will also master key skills for effective organizational consulting including client reconnaissance; client relationship management; and the creation of value-added consultant deliverables.  The 15 contact hour workshop in January can be taken for 1 or 2 credits. Students wishing to earn 2 credits for this workshop will turn additional deliverables in the first month of their internship – these deliverables will help them apply the tools they have learned in this workshop to better understand their host organizations. Instructor: Dr. Beryl Levinger.

Designing and Evaluating Interventions (IPSS 8531 A, 1 credit, Pass/Fail) Jan. 13-14, 9:00am-5:00pm

This workshop will cover basic tools and steps involved in designing successful interventions (i.e. projects and programs) and effectively evaluating these interventions.  This workshop will prepare students to assist the growing number of organizations across various specializations that are trying to establish more systematic design and evaluation systems. Instructor: Emily Morris; Monitoring, Evaluation & Research Technical Advisor, Education Development Center, Inc. (EDC).

Quantitative Data Analysis in a Professional Setting w/ Excel (IPSS 8532A, 1 credit, Pass/Fail) Jan 6-7, 9:00am-5:00pm

This course is designed to meet the needs of graduate school level students who are looking to improve their understanding and abilities to collect and analyze data using Microsoft Excel. Collection and analysis are covered in the same course because proper planning and collection of good quality information requires understanding of data analysis and vice versa. The course will be broken up into three distinct modules that are each catered to the skill set of the respective audiences: Beginner, Intermediate, and Advanced. Instructor: Kevin Morenzi.

Applied Qualitative Data Collection and Analysis (IPSS 8533A, 1 credit, Pass/Fail) Jan. 11-12, 9:00am-5:00pm

Students will acquire and practice tools essential for systematically analyzing qualitative data as a professional in the government, nonprofit, or private sectors. “Learning by doing” will be the main instruction approach. Examples from typical assignments from professional setting such as needs assessment, policy analysis, and M&E will be used to facilitate learning. Instructor: Scott Gregory Pulizzi

Networked International Organizations: Using Networks, Measurement, and Social Media for Learning That Leads To Impact (IPSS 8534A, 1 credit, Pass/Fail) Jan 16-17, 9:00am-5:00m

This two-day workshop will help create an integrated communications strategy that makes effective use of social media and mobile tactics and tools to get results for their host organizations.   Those results may be increased brand awareness, fundraising, inspiring and mobilizing stakeholders to take action, or outreach.  The course will also help students develop a professional learning and networking strategy that will help them deepen the impact of their internship and support their career goals. Instructor: Beth Kanter, an author who was recently named “One of the Most Influential Women in Technology” by Fast Company.

These professional skill workshops will be open to students and professional outside of the IPSS program space-permitting. Please email to express interest.

Friday, November 10th, 2017

DPMI Plus Spotlight: Malvya Chintakindi


Malvya at the Taj Mahal. It is around half a day’s journey from where she currently lives!

We spoke with Current DPMI Plus student Malvya Chintakindi about her experience as a researcher for the organization Outline India, which specializes in quantitative and qualitative research. She talks about her strategy for finding the right internship, which classes from MIIS have helped her out the most, and advice for working in development.

How early did you start looking for internships?

During my DPMI Monterey classes, I was of the mindset that I would look for an internship as summer approaches – probably during March. I soon realized that I wanted to a internship in India as it is more pertinent and relevant. I actually started looking for jobs/internships in February 2017 and my plans were finalized in May 2017. The earlier one starts, the better.

What was your strategy? 

I had two points in mind – 1. I want to work in India, 2. I would like my role to include Monitoring and Evaluation duties. Finding a job/internship by based the job title alone can be heavily misleading. It is not easy to find a job that says “M & E Officer” or “M & E Specialist” as it may not always be feasible or practical depending on the region of work, terminology used in the region and what “M & E” particularly entails for that specific organization. I broadened my scope of search and looked for anything within the development sector with my own specifics in mind.

What suggestions do you have for interviewing well?

I was myself! Once through the written test, I had a skype interview where I spoke about everything that excites me.

 Which classes at MIIS have been the most practical in terms of the work you are doing now?

 A mock interview with enumerators, before kickstarting fieldwork for a project with Tsuda University, which aims at building a multidimensional index for measuring poverty and life satisfaction.

Definitely DPMI, Program Evaluation, and Organizational Sustainability. I wish that I had taken classes on finance for nonprofits.


What is the best advice you received for working in development?

I have been hearing out anyone who talks to me about the field of development. I think ground level experience is invaluable and I am so excited to embark on ground/field work soon.

A snapshot of one of the enumerators from the Tsuda University project, This project aims to build a multidimensional index to assess the overall life satisfaction of individuals belonging to low and middle-income groups.

What are your plans once the internship is completed?

I will still be working with the same organization and exploring the field of development in India.

What has been the most surprising thing to happen to you since arriving in India?

I am living in a city called Gurugram up north – away from my home city, Hyderabad. It has been a great learning experience to be in a new city, exploring both new foods and culture. I have been mistaken for a school kid so many times!



Any other tips or suggestions for students who are about to begin their internship search?

Be yourself – do not compromise on that. Give everything a very persistent try. Search for internships early and be sincere.


Thank you Malvya! Best of luck!

Tuesday, October 31st, 2017

Are MIIS Alums using a New Model of Sustainable Development in Peru?

Full Article Published in Middlebury Magazine
By Carolyn Kormann ’04
Photographs by Brett Simison

OVER THE PAST HALF DECADE, in the Andes Mountains of southern Peru, two bearded Americans—a couple of Middlebury Institute graduates named Aaron Ebner MPA ’11, and Adam Stieglitz MPA ’11—have made the same harrowing trip hundreds of times. Their starting point is the city of Calca, where they live, and their destination is Lares, a district on the other side of a mountain pass—14,448 feet above sea level—where a group of indigenous, Quechua communities with Incan roots are scattered. Since 2009, Ebner and Stieglitz—under the auspices of their nonprofit organization, the Andean Alliance for Sustainable Development (AASD)—have worked and conducted research in the region, establishing long-term relationships with the campesinos who survive there by farming and raising animals on the steep mountainsides. Ebner (known locally as Ah-ron), Stieglitz (A-dam), and the AASD have, at this point, become household names.

Julio Cesar Nina and Yésica Cusiyupanqui had seen numerous NGOs come and go in their native Peru. What they’ve experienced with the Andean Alliance is a different story.

The AASD is a small, unique NGO. Its mission is to support community-led development projects. Unlike other NGOs, at least those working in the Andes, one of its primary tactics has been the establishment of deep trust-based relationships with the communities in which it works. Since Ebner and Stieglitz started the organization while they were graduate students at the Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey, they have also made academic research and experiential education key components of the alliance’s model. Their approach relies heavily on the help of students who take part in their courses and programs.

International NGOs have traditionally followed and, in many cases, still follow a top-down model of development. In the cartoon version of this model, an NGO shows up in an isolated, poor (by Western metrics) place and tells its residents what they are missing, or what will improve their quality of life, or what skills they should learn. NGOs dig a well, or teach some classes, or do whatever it is that they determine the place needs, despite having never lived there. Then, like a traveling circus, they leave.

Ebner and Stieglitz are critical of this approach but admit that their own mindset when they arrived in Peru was not so different. They gave lip service to the idea of community-led development, but actually came to the Andes like nouveau eco-missionaries, with a plan to build greenhouses next to schools. They believed that this simple idea could immediately create significant improvements in people’s lives. Instead, over the next eight years, they were humbled, frustrated, resented. Some of the greenhouses were ignored or unused, the victims of changing school directors or a lack of community ownership. Ebner and Stieglitz had many sleepless nights wondering what they were doing with their lives, and if their efforts had any value or impact. They spent years without salaries. But they also were not afraid to acknowledge their failures, their misunderstandings, and to use those experiences to help them refine and refocus the alliance’s mission.

Gradually, the AASD has made a small but steadily positive impact. School greenhouse projects led to family greenhouse projects, which turned out to be much more successful and sustainable. (Since 2012, they have helped 65 families build them.) Beginning in 2014, they began emphasizing the experiential-education arm of their organization and started collaborating with Middlebury professors to create courses for both graduate and undergraduate students. Students did a semester of in-class preparation for the work they would do on site in Calca—during J-term or summer recess—then another semester of follow-up reflection and analysis. (The AASD has also conducted an independent research practicum every summer since 2015.) These projects have centered around topics related to social change and communication, climate change, or, this year, school greenhouse gardens. The AASD has then presented its findings to organizations like Calca’s regional office of economic development, ensuring that community members’ wants, needs, and concerns are addressed on the larger institutional and governmental stage.

Several Middlebury Institute alumni have traveled down to Calca and stayed with the AASD after their internships or independent studies ended, including, most notably, two current senior staff members: Gaelen Hayes, the experiential learning program manager, and Christopher Miller, the director of organizational development. Miller told me that he especially values how the AASD establishes long-term relationships with the people who live in the region. Their approach, he added, couldn’t be more different from big governmental or NGO development projects. “We’re not coming into these communities like Oprah: ‘You get a greenhouse! And you get a greenhouse! Everybody gets a greenhouse!’” Miller said. “We know that’s never going to work. Instead, we go to these community assemblies and present these ideas to everyone. Those who are really open to it, really see the benefit of it—that’s where you’ll see success.”

Adam Stieglitz and Aaron Ebner at a school in Choquecancha.

What is scalable, they say, is their hybrid model bridging experiential education with community-led development. Stieglitz believes it will revolutionize the future of education and cross-cultural exchange, and will spread around the world. He sees universities working with other small NGOs to support their grassroots

development efforts by sending students to help them. Students, in turn, have new hands-on and place-based learning opportunities. The model has endless possibilities, some of which have been piloted at Middlebury already: undergraduate students working with a regional economic development office to evaluate their programs, network with other experts in a particular field, and help the office adapt the program to make it better; and wraparound courses that precede and follow a student’s research done in Calca. “It’s not just about a three-week experience during J-term,” Stieglitz said. “It’s everything leading up to that and what comes after.” He imagines an evaluation class in which students design a way to evaluate one of the AASD’s programs, then go to Calca and carry it out; or a live case study, in which people in a community in Peru are involved in the class taking place at Middlebury. “It’s about building that cohesion,” he said. “Experiential education is adding value locally, in Peru.” But in their model, it’s “not just about students coming in and helping communities. There is also this bilateral flow, push and pull—what students are taking away from these brilliant sustainable communities as it relates to their studies.”


Read the full article published in Middlebury Magazine here.

Monday, October 2nd, 2017

IEM Practicum Spotlight: Dave Malacki

We spoke with the always delightful Dave Malacki about his current IEM practicum experience in Portland, Oregon. Read on to see what he has to say about the pros and cons of staying local vs. working abroad, post-practicum plans, and tips on finding the best practicum fit for you!

How did you find your practicum? What is your job title? How big is your office?

My practicum search first began by identifying liberal arts institutions in California, and after discussing some options with IEM faculty I expanded my geographic search northward into the Pacific Northwest (PNW). I conducted informational interviews with IEM students on practicum and IEM alum in the PNW as well as having a cold email template ready to send to any institution that met my search criteria.

I held multiple conversations with the assistant director in Lewis & Clark College’s Overseas & Off-Campus Programs office and opted to join their team based on the projects I desired working on that aligned with their needs. The Overseas office has three full-time staff members and three student workers. I’m serving as their graduate assistant for the term.

What has been the most surprising/unexpected thing to happen to you at work?

Well, before even having the first conversation with LC I knew their study abroad participation rate was rather high (60-65%), yet did not expect such high interest from newly matriculated students. This was a pleasant surprise and required me adapting my advising strategy away from major-specific advising more towards general education advising as most freshmen have yet to declare majors.

On another note, the first project I worked on was a rather robust redesign of their application portal. Due to it being a large project, it was somewhat daunting and required working with campus stakeholders to identify resources available on campus to reduce the final price point. It was surprisingly challenging, yet very rewarding to see it implemented for all fall applicants.

What are the pros and cons of doing your practicum in the U.S. vs abroad?

Well, doing practicum in the US was a very personal decision between my partner and I. We both would have loved to live overseas, but didn’t really want to go through immigration procedures again if we decided to come back to the US.

A pro of doing practicum anywhere in the US is the ability to network in that location. It’s great to do phone informational interviews, yet doing them face-to-face really helps both parties establish a bit more rapport which could lead to potential job notifications earlier.

Do you have a favorite local Portland spot?

Ohh, I have this awesome tea spot, Tea Chai Té (where I’m ironically writing this), that serves the best milk tea I’ve had outside of China! To jive with the hipster vibe, one of their locations is inside of an old train caboose.

Aside from businesses, the entire Columbia River Gorge and areas around Mt. Hood for hiking and exploring are easily my favorite places to enjoy some time in nature and escape from city life. Unfortunately, the fires in the Gorge have closed a couple of the epic trails I did there. However, for anyone looking to get some awesome exposure, the Cooper Spur trail on the NW flanks of Hood offers views of Rainier, St. Helens, Adams, Jefferson, and on clear days a couple of the Sisters. It tops off around 8,500 feet with nearly 5,000 feet of elevation gain in about five miles. Well worth the constant trudge up!

Which IEM course has helped prepare you the most in your daily work?

It’s difficult to pinpoint one specific course, yet based on the book that I find myself reaching for in the office most days I suppose Education Abroad Management. Advanced Topics in Education Abroad, as well as Design & Assessment, were both highly useful in the work that I’ve done thus far, too. I’m continually referring to the NAFSA Guide to Education Abroad to ensure that my project work is getting rooted in established practice. Both skills developed through D&A, along with topics discussed during Advanced Topics have helped me greatly in drafting reports and informing the designs of projects.

Do you have any plans post-practicum? If so, what are they?

Find a job! Extending beyond that I’m planning on returning to Pittsburgh a bit later in 2018 to see my two best friends get married. As always, I have plenty of concerts I want to attend and the northwest is a great place to ensure that happens! Professionally speaking, I do want to stay connected in the field through conference attendance and establishing connections with organizations like Lessons From Abroad and PDX Abroad.

What has been your favorite cultural experience?

I think most of my classmates know I have a keen interest in live music. Recently, I caught a performance by a solo pianist in an old church that had the most amazing acoustics. It certainly helped that the performer was covering mostly Phish and The Grateful Dead, two of my favorite bands. Initially, I wanted to write going to Powell’s Bookstore for the first time, but that just seemed too generic. However, Powell’s is a great place to get lost on any rainy day!

Final thoughts?

The process of finding a practicum site accompanying with having a full course load was a stressful experience for myself. I had classmates that didn’t find practicum until well after the end of the spring term, and having that patience could prove useful when determining the best fit.

Best of luck in the future Dave!

Wednesday, September 27th, 2017

IEM Practicum, DPMI Plus, IONP, and Boren Fellow Participants for Fall 2017 Announced

For fall 2017, a total of 58 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 Monterey, CA and as far away as Washington, D.C. Internationally, they are spread across five continents.

Programs include the International Education Management (IEM) Practicum, DPMI Plus, International Organizations and Nonproliferation Program (IONP), and the Boren Fellows Program.

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

International Education Management (IEM) Practicum

Name Placement Location
Christopher Adams Middlebury School Abroad Spain Spain
Lauren Bell Peace Corps Liberia Liberia
Noelle Boucher Education USA Malaysia
Khatab Cissokho Middlebury School Abroad Cameroon Cameroon
Caitlin Cook Portland Community College USA
Janira Cordova California State University at Dominguez Hills USA
Jessica DiFoggio Middlebury C.V. Starr School in Italy Italy
Grace Earley DC Language Immersion Project USA
Catherine Golub Middlebury Schools Abroad at ICU in Tokyo Japan
Charlotte Grant Save the Children- International Laos(SCIL) Laos
Eli Hatch NYU School of Professional Studies, Tokyo Japan
Schuyler Horn Monterey County Weekly USA
Victoria Hudak UC San Francisco USA
McKenna Hughes Middlebury C.V. Starr School in France France
Elizabeth Imasa Knowledge Exchange Institute (KEI) USA
Alyssa Jackson EUSA Madrid Spain
Martha Jensen DIS Study Abroad in Scandanavia Denmark
Seth Joyner Univeristy of Utah Asia Campus South Korea
David Malacki Lewis and Clark College USA
Anna McCreedy UC Berkeley International Office USA
Jessica Meado CEA Study Abroad Prague Czech Rep.
Melissa Nix EUSA Spain
Karla Piacentini Foundation for Sustainable Development USA
Erika Quinonez Florida International University USA
JoLyn Rekasis The Andean Alliance for Sustainable Development Peru
Rebecca Richey Performing Arts Abroad (PAA) and Syracuse University Madrid Center USA
Hope Sanders Kent State University USA/Italy
Alexander Smith Northeastern University, Global Experience Office USA
David Smith EUSA Sevilla Spain
Daniel Solomon CIEE USA/Chile
Brett Srader International School of Myanmar Myanmar
Eric Staab WorldChicago USA
Laura Stipic Syracuse University France
Shayna Trujillo Diversity Abroad USA
Yijun Wang California State University San Marcos USA
Stephanie Weisfeld Case Western Reserve University USA
Sarah Whitley University of Utah Asia Campus South Korea
Katy Wilson Middlebury Institute of International Studies USA
Ayako Yamada Asian Institute of Management (AIM) Philippines
Zilin Zheng ISS and FIUTS offices, University of Washington USA


Name Placement Location
Eli Hatch NYU School of Professional Studies Tokyo Tokyo, Japan
Sarah Whitley University of Utah Incheon, South Korea
Amy Nguyen Relief International Myanmar (remote)
Karla Piacentini Foundation for Sustainable Development Sacramento, CA
Charlotte Grant Save the Children Luang Prabang, Laos
Malvya Chintakindi Outline India Gurgaon, India
Lauren Bell Peace Corps Response Liberia
Katie Morton TechnoServe Johannesburg, South Africa
Katie Boynton Oasis Legal Service Oakland, CA
Cody Minnich   Unicef Phnom Penh, Cambodia
Ayako Yamada Asian Institute of Management Makati, Philippines

Boren Fellows

Name Placement Location
Chelsea Lavallee African Flagship Language Initiative (French) Senegal
Andrew Meador Hopkins-Nanjing Center Certificate of Graduate Studies (Mandarin) China
Jimmy Smith Middlebury Schools Abroad Jordan

International Organizations and Nonproliferation Program (IONP)

Name Placement Location
Joseph Rodgers UN Instistitute for Disarmement Research (UNIDIR) Geneva, Switzerland
Stephanie Halasz International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) Vienna, Austria
Maria Rivas Cueva Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization (CTBTO) Vienna, Austria
Paul Warnke UN Office for Disarmament Affairs (UNODA) New York, New York
Margaret Rowland UN Office for Disarmament Affairs (UNODA) New York, New York

Leave of Absence

Name Placement Location
Ariana Alva Ferrari Think Beyond Plastic Honduras

Thursday, September 14th, 2017


2 or 3-week international development and social change training open to all degree programs with optional credit-bearing internship/job fellowship open to DPP and IEP students.

All students interested in DPMI & DPMI PLUS, are recommended to attend this INFO SESSION on Tuesday, Sept 19, 2017, at Casa Fuente-434.

Click here to read more

Tuesday, September 5th, 2017

Tech in the Tenderloin Hackathon & Tech Fair

Calling all creative MIISfits interested in flexing your ideation and innovation muscles!

Click here to read more

Monday, July 17th, 2017

Call for Application: Certificate in International Development & Social Change

Certificate in International Development and Social Change

A professional graduate certificate program for careers in program design, partnering, management, and innovation (DPMI)

Launch Your Career

This program is designed for aspiring development and social change practitioners seeking expanded career opportunities in program design, partnering, management, and innovation (DPMI). You’ll gain the program design, evaluation, strategic partnering, and facilitation skills needed to launch a career in international development, becoming part of a global network of over 1,300 DPMI alumni tackling the world’s most pressing problems.

Intensive Hands-on Training

The highly interactive, participatory, and student-centered curriculum includes three modules:

Designing & Managing Development Projects

  • Design and assess projects that foster sustainable development
  • Use simulations and case study exercises to learn the approaches widely used by multinational organizations such as USAID, World Bank, and UNDP

Facilitating Participatory Development

  • Master the tools and techniques to be an effective facilitator, trainer, and change agent
  • Understand the importance of local human resource development
  • Learn to transfer skills to communities so they can conduct their own training programs

Social Entrepreneurship & Strategic Partnering

  • Conduct analyses of vision and mission in a context of social entrepreneurship
  • Identify core competencies and forge strategic partnerships for organizational effectiveness
  • Use innovative software applications for challenging simulations

International Faculty

The program is taught by internationally renowned specialists who have extensive knowledge of the development field, including Beryl Levinger of the Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey, Evan Bloom, formerly of Pact, and co-founder of Root Change, and Sharon Bean of USAID.

Upcoming Training: 
  • Monterey, CA: January 8-26, 2018
  • Rwanda: January 9-18, 2018
Application Deadline for Monterey and Rwanda:
  • Early Review and International Applicant* Deadline: September 1, 2017
  • Final Application Deadline: October 31, 2017

To find our more visit our webpage or email us at 

Student Testimonials and featured alumni 


Monday, July 3rd, 2017

Reflections on DPMI 2017 Washington, DC

26 participants successfully completed three-week Certificate in International Development and Social Change program on June 23, 2017. The participants constituted United College Scholars, Middlebury Institute and Middlebury College Students, and international development professionals. As a field visit, the participants got opportunities to visit several development organizations in DC and explore the trends in the development sector. Read the testimonies of the United World Scholars below: 

I applied for the DPMI program because of its relevance to my current role at a microfinance technology startup. Tasked with creating and implementing pilot interventions I was actively searching for frameworks with which to formalize the design process within my organization. In addition to learning and practicing with tools on program design, I gained critical leadership skills, design thinking exercises, and was given time to develop my theory of change within the development sector. A major highlight of the DPMI program was getting to know the other cohort members- especially the UWC participants.

The group work exercises allowed us to learn from each other’s academic, professional and personal experiences with development. Beryl’s weeklong simulation was also a deeply immersive learning experience. I appreciated the visit to the Organization of the American States (OAS) as an opportunity to visualize an alternative path within the development sector. Ultimately, the DPMI program, along with the framework and tools imparted will be relevant irrespective of which sector they are approached and utilized through.  

Amita Ramachandran, Macalester College, ’15 (Economics & International Development)


When I applied for the DPMI program, I was a senior International Politics and Economics major at Middlebury College. I directed most of my academic career towards an interdisciplinary pursuit of subjects related to international development. My interest in the field has been largely shaped and informed by my experiences at home in the Philippines; I constantly think about how I might contribute to the betterment of my country and society.

Three weeks of DPMI was crucial in my efforts to build connections between the theoretical approach I was exposed to in a liberal arts education, and the practical tools and skills applied in the field. It was inspiring to learn from such seasoned instructors and facilitators, the frameworks that are widely used in addressing global and systemic problems. While it might be a few years before I pursue a career in international development, I am grateful to DPMI for allowing me a close look at some of what international development work could involve.

Gabbie Santos, Middlebury College ’17 (International Politics & Economics)



Monday, July 3rd, 2017

DPMI brings MIDD & MIIS students together in Washington, DC

25 participants gathered in Washington, DC, in June 2017 for the Certificate in International Development and Social Change, a professional graduate certificate program offered by Middlebury Institute. The certificate program centers around careers in program design, partnering, management, and Innovation (DPMI). The participants constituted Middlebury College & MIIS students, UWC Scholars, and International Development and Social Change practitioners. The DPMI program has been a big draw for MIIS and MIDD students that allows them to connect and build bridges between the two Middlebury campuses in Vermont and California. The students are not just learning about the recipes of international development and social change, but they are also connecting with one another and learning to work together.

The Certificate in International Development and Social Change program is also offered in January 2018 at Monterey. Please share this with someone who might be interested. To learn more about the program, click here.

Monday, June 19th, 2017

Do you have a social venture that needs funding to launch it?

The D-Prize social venture competition is live!   If selected we will award you up to $20,000 to launch a pilot in any region where extreme poverty exists. D-Prize funds new entrepreneurs who increase access to proven poverty interventions. Can you design a business or NGO that solves one of the Distribution Challenges below:








Interested in applying? Visit for details.


Monday, May 15th, 2017

IEMer Heather Rahimi Excels on South Korean Practicum

Heather Rahimi MAIEM ‘17 has spent the last four months on practicum at the University of Utah Asia campus in Incheon, South Korea.  Having never set foot on the Asian continent prior to her practicum, Heather utilized takeaways from her MIIS coursework, non-verbal communication and flexibility to excel throughout her experience.

What has been the most surprising thing you have encountered on your practicum in Korea?

Seeing as it’s my first time in South Korea, let alone Asia, I have encountered many surprises. I think the biggest surprise, or at least the one that has had the biggest positive impact on me, is understanding that one doesn’t need verbal language to communicate with others. My Korean is limited to “hello”, “thank you”, and “goodbye”, so coming here inspired a certain amount of fear in me. However, I discovered so much can be said without words, especially in Korea. A simple grunt can say a million words! These days I grunt at everything, it can mean “yes”, “oh!”, “I understand”, “I’m so sorry”, you name it! So here is a word of caution to all those who see me after I return state-side, be prepared for countless grunts, warm smiles, and a little bit of pushing.

Credit: Snow College News

What has been one of the most valuable skills or takeaways from your coursework at MIIS that has helped you succeed in your practicum work?

I was pretty nervous for my first day on the job, I was certain I wouldn’t know anything and would have to constantly ask my supervisor for help. But, I quickly found out, my coursework at MIIS had taught me so much more than I thought and left me utterly, if not overly, prepared for this position. I was most grateful for the skills I learned in my Staff Management course. Even as an intern, I definitely needed to manage up, be aware of cross-cultural differences, such as communication styles, and be prepared to lead a meeting when no one else was up for the task.

How has your experience in Korea informed what you hope to do next (whether or not you know what that is at the moment)?

My practicum position at UAC has taught me many invaluable lessons and enabled me to grow as a person and a professional. As an intern, I have been able to work on a variety of projects that wouldn’t typically fall under one person’s job responsibilities. Each project has given me insight into what type of work I want to do in my future and made me realize that although I would prefer to work in education abroad, I am now also open to and enjoy working in international student and scholar services. Whereas before I only wanted to work in education abroad, I can now broaden the scope of my job search and better identify positions that I will thrive in based on my first-hand experience with job responsibilities and work environments.


Friday, May 12th, 2017

Register for Professional Development Weekend Workshops offered in Fall 2017.

Every semester we offer weekend workshops to our graduate students on a wide variety of topics from Development Practice and Policy, Intercultural Competence, International Education Management,  and Nonproliferation & Terrorism Studies.

The Professional Development Weekend Workshops are also open to interested professionals, community members, and students and faculty from other institutions. Access the Fall 2017 workshop listing. For inquiries, please contact:

Apply for a weekend workshop.

Search weekend workshop descriptions in our course catalog.

Friday, May 12th, 2017

Addy’s experience as United Nations Intern in Lima

Addy Michelle Jimenez Haga, IPD

United Nations Centre for Peace, Disarmament, and Development in Latin America and the Caribbean, Peru

January 2nd to June 31st, 2017

Summary of Experience:

Throughout my internship with the United Nations (UN), I have been given the privilege to learn about administrative mannerisms, arms trafficking, forensic ballistics, Resolution 1540, the missing links within the private security sector, and life cycle of its projects, how the UN executes grant writing and much more. I have been able to integrate into an 8-5 job, where I work mostly alone, and where I have developed my own due dates; this has been a change from the intense, rich feedback and team oriented culture at MIIS. However, it has been an enriching experience, and extremely conducive towards seamlessly introducing me to the paying-professional world after I honorably receive my Master’s degree from MIIS.

UNLIREC asked me to keep my blog discrete, which motivated me to be more involved and creative within my in Lima. From the congested city, endless honking, foul smells, to the loving people, kind souls, and delectable food, all whilst enduring stomach infections throughout. This opportunity has tested my resilience and has shown me that I am much more capable, patient, smarter and stronger than I thought.

Thank you for contributing towards this internship in Lima, Peru. I was once told in Peace Corps to represent America as if I was an ambassador each and every day; I have taken this mentality with me everywhere I go. With this said, I am honored to represent MIIS, and am working as hard as possible, being as innovative as possible, and being as positive as possible, to leave the Mafia footprint in Lima.

Read Addy’s blog


Thursday, May 4th, 2017

Application for Student Art Exhibition

If you have any art project that you would like to share with Committee on Art in Public Places (CAPP) or want to organize an art exhibition on campus, please submit Arts Project ProposalFor more details click here.

Thursday, April 20th, 2017

IEM Symposium April 27th!

Hey all! Next week is Symposium! Come out (or log on to Zoom) and support current practicum students in the 8-10am and 4-6pm sessions, as well as those in the 12-2pm session presenting on NAFSA Advocacy Day, Team Spain, CIES and Diversity Abroad!

To log-on via Zoom (no download required), please visit

Tuesday, April 18th, 2017

Social Impact Management Workshop and Internship in Colombia with Fundacion E2E

TALLER PARA LA GESTIÓN DE IMPACTO SOCIAL (TGIS) TGIS is a competitive international program in Medellín, Colombia for current and aspiring social impact practitioners on project design and management, impact measurement, and organizational sustainability. Participants collaborate with Colombian and international students, professionals, and community leaders to solve real issues using cutting-edge tools. TGIS is an unparalleled experience in a collaborative classroom environment where participants learn methods they can apply directly in their work. The program also offers MIIS students the opportunity for a 12-week internship in conjunction with the course, with placements across Colombia. The TGIS curriculum is created in cooperation with the Program on Design, Partnering, Management and Innovation (DPMI).

To learn more and apply, visit:

TGIS June Flyer MIIS (1)

Friday, April 14th, 2017

Call Out for Community Stories !!

Have you made a connection with the local Monterey Community during your time at MIIS? If you have, please do share your stories with us. We will feature you and your partnership with the community. BE PART OF A PHOTO ESSAY showing MIIS & Monterey Community Partnership. Your stories will be developed as photo exhibit that will be displayed on MIIS Campus, Monterey Museum of Arts, and local city halls.

Send us an email if you want to be part of the project or want to nominate someone for the project at 

Deadline: April 21, 2017

Friday, April 14th, 2017

Thinking of connecting locally over the summer?

Please check out the Community Collaboration Lab page and Explore the Past, Present and Future of Collaborative Learning. MIIS and California State University at Monterey Bay (CSUMB) have been collaborating on a project called Community CollaborationLab (CoLab). The underlying question being explored is: How might we have more meaningful, long-term engagements with community organizations that we partner with? This includes student, faculty and staff projects, practica and research. In an effort to collect and share historical data, Immersive Learning has been capturing a range of information on collaborative learning with the local community and surrounding areas. The list of the local partner organizations are listed on our database, if you exploring organizations for summer internships in Monterey County.