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Student Testimonials

Student Internship Experience

Kate Boehler

Kate Boehler

Kate Boehler, an economics and French major from SUNY Cortland, interned at The Adventure Project (TAP), as an Accounting/Bookkeeping intern. Kate’s experience as the student activities board treasurer on her campus led her to this internship. TAP is a start-up nonprofit designed to “add venture” to support entrepreneurs in developing countries. It brings together people determined to create jobs in developing countries and works on issues related to health, water, environment and hunger. In 2012, TAP’s effort impacted over 500,000 people around the world.  Kate has been responsible for entering all donations, purchases, and bank transfers into the accounting software program each week. She assisted in creating the Annual Report for the organization by working on the public financial report for the organization.  She met with the organizations CPA a couple times each month to make sure that everything is accurate, but overall pretty much carried the financial records of the organization. Kate has been quiet independent. She enjoyed working with TAP in a collective incubator, the Center for Social Innovation.



Monica Farrel and Gregory Blitstein

Monica FarrellGregory Blitstein and Monica Farrel both have interned at the Foreign Policy Association, an organization with a 95-year history. The FPA aims to serve as a catalyst for developing awareness, understanding, and informed opinion on U.S. foreign policy and global issues.

Gregory Blitstein, a double major in political science and Spanish from University at Buffalo, worked as an Events Department intern at the Foreign Policy Association. Helping coordinate and assisting the President of FPA in planning different conferences, task forces and other events held throughout the year. He was involved in their annual World Leadership Forum. Task Forces are shorter events designed to spread awareness of growing issues that affect the world. He helped plan a Task Force event on Climate Change and Global Conflict.

Monica Farrel is a junior in international relations. She worked at the FPA as an Executive Office intern. She focused on education, event planning and social media management. The FPA publishes a yearly magazine entitled Great Decisions, which aims to educate Americans about eight pressing foreign policy issues of the year. The Foreign Policy Association holds various events throughout the year that are focused upon the topics of Great Decisions. Monica worked to design the topics of discussion for the lectures, locate venues and panelists for these events, and advertise these events to FPA members and students. Every year the FPA holds a Great Decisions Teachers Training Institute to help promote education about foreign policy in high schools across the nation. Monica was responsible for maintaining contact with the teachers of the institute and provided resources for them to educate their students.

Both Greg and Monica helped organize and participate in high profile speaker events. They have heard from such academics as Francis Fukuyama. They also invited the GEP students to participate in an event where they heard from the UN Deputy Secretary General Jan Eliasson.



Alex ElmarsiAlexander Elmasri

Alexander Elmasri is a senior in international relations at SUNY New Paltz.   He interned with the Program Department at the Clinton Global Initiative (CGI), the initiative of the Clinton Foundation that convenes global leaders to create and implement innovative solutions to the world's most pressing challenges. He helped fellows in this department develop the content for all of the CGI meetings. Included in this process is creating the meeting schedules, format and session topics, as well as the selection and recruitment of moderators and panelists. As a program intern, he was also responsible with aiding the department in support of the day-to-day management of all program related matters. The very first activity that he participated was the CGI annual meeting which coincides with the opening of the UN. This event hosts some of the most powerful people in the world like President Obama and other government officials around the world. Alex got to meet with President Clinton and Chelsea Clinton as they prepare for the next year’s program.  



Nadine Ahrabi-Nejad


Nadine Ahrabi-Nejad, a marketing senior at SUNY New Paltz. Nadine interned at the Membership Department of Doctors Without Borders. Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) is an international medical humanitarian aid organization that provides independent, impartial assistance in more than 60 countries to people whose survival is threatened by violence, neglect, or catastrophe, primarily due to armed conflict, epidemics, malnutrition, exclusion from health care, or natural disasters.  As a marketing intern at MSF, Nadine worked closely with the Direct Marketing Associate for Creative and Production on a variety of marketing tactics aimed at reaching donors all across the United States.  She assisted in direct mail activities, email marketing, and logistical work behind fundraising events including LA Marathon and the New York City Marathon.  She worked on tracking donor giving behavior, as well as conducting analysis of industry marketing materials and trends.

She also participated in weekly brown bag lunches at the organization where she heard from doctors returning from the field such as Ethiopia and Syria and other relevant information about the humanitarian work of the organization. Nadine conducted a comparative research project where she did surveyed different MSF branches in exploring donor behavior globally.



Keith Uffer

Keith Uffer

Keith Uffer, an international relations major, interned at the United Nations Association of the United States of America, Southern NYS Division. The UNA-USA is an association dedicated to building understanding of the UN and supports the ideals and vital work of the UN among the American people. They do this by their education and advocacy programs which stress the importance of nations working together and the need for U.S. leadership at the UN. Keith worked on organizing and judging a video contest in which middle school students and high school students based on the “world they want”. He also was involved in expanding UNA-USA’s outreach over social networking sites. UNA-USA is leading the civil society consultations on the Post 2015 agenda for the Millennium Development Goals in the United States. Keith helped plan and coordinate a major consultation event where the GEP students were also invited to participate. The results of these consultations will later be shared with by UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon. Keith also organized the Human Rights Day Event, which took place at the Eleanor Roosevelt library in the Mid Hudson Valley.





Dilrupa Haque

Dilrupa Haque is a senior in International Relations at SUNY New Paltz. She interned at the International Institute for Humanitarian Affairs, a research and training center affiliated with Fordham University. The IIHA offers a professionalization opportunity through degrees for people with several years of experience in the field of humanitarian affairs. This internship was perfect for Dilrupa who wants to go into this field; she was able to see first-hand insights into the field of humanitarian affairs. The center offers great resources for those who are in the field of humanitarian affairs to professionalize through courses designed for people who are already in the field. Dilrupa confirmed that her future lies in this field through this internship.





Ricky HernandezRicardo A. Hernandez, Jr.

Ricardo A. Hernandez Jr., a double major in political science and journalism, served as a communications intern at the International Gay and Lesbian Human Rights Commission (IGLHRC), an organization dedicated to ending discrimination or abuse on the basis of sexual orientation, gender identity or expression. He created multimedia for the organization using video editing software. He wrote press releases and media advisories about upcoming projects, studies and events for the organization. He monitored IGLHRC in the news, and conducted research on LGBT human rights violations in selected regions. He aided in the creation of a manual to help LGBT activists in Iran. His editorial on a historic UN event was published on line. This event held at the UN with 10 foreign ministers including Secretary of State John Kerry was an unprecedented meeting to address violence and discrimination against LGBT people around the world. He helped organize and host a delegation of international activists and visitors from around the world for meetings at the UN around the December 10 Human Rights day.



Christiana NicolaouChristiana Nicolaou

Christiana Nicolaou, an International Business major at SUNY New Paltz, interned at the New York City Mayor’s Office for International Affairs, in the Division for International Business. The Division for International Business aids foreign companies in establishing operations in New York City. At the Mayor’s Office she was able to observe companies intending to launch their businesses in one of the most competitive cities in the world and ultimately understand the obstacles and opportunities in conducting business globally. She was also responsible to keep the international business directory as well as the events calendar of this office accurate and up to date. Christiana worked on a project exploring the programs initiated by the government of New York City in comparison to other globally competitive cities around the world in attracting technology related businesses.




Jennifer VanriperJennifer Vanriper

Jennifer Vanriper, a senior in international relations, interned at the Humpty Dumpty Institute as a part of the Higher Education Alliance team. The Humpty Dumpty Institute is an NGO dedicated to “putting the pieces back together.” The HDI was formed after its founders traveled around the world, witnessing firsthand things falling apart around the world in places such as post-genocide Rwanda, and decided to take action. Today, the organization runs both diplomatic and large-scale humanitarian projects around the world. These include strengthening US-UN relations, removing land mines for post-conflict areas, and promoting healthcare and food security in developing nations. The Higher Education Alliance department that Jennifer worked at connects higher education institutions with UN in order to raise awareness. Jennifer helped organize events on different campuses related to Peace and Security, Human Rights, Sustainable Development, and the Post-2015 Development Agenda. She helped put together contact information and calendars, publicity, and social media. She also helped HDI organize their speaker database. 


Caitlin O'Donnell

Caitlin O’Donnell

Caitlin O’Donnell has been an intern at the Global Legal Program of the Center for Reproductive Rights, which is a global legal advocacy organization dedicated to expanding reproductive freedom for women around the world. The Center works to expand access to quality, safe, and affordable reproductive health care. As an intern, she supported the work of the Global Legal Program’s team of legal advisors, fellows, program associates, and legal assistants. Her projects ranged from doing research and fact checking on world abortion laws to creating and organizing databases for communication and outreach purposes. She was able to attend both center wide staff meetings and meetings for the Global Legal Program specifically.


Cecilia SteinCecilia Stein

Cecilia Stein, a senior in international relations, interned at the Clerk’s Office at the United States Court of International Trade. The Court of International Trade was established in 1980 to oversee all legal cases arising out of international trade policy in the United States. Cecelia helped write a memo on the change of rules of the court’s advisory committee. She also worked on the law library court archives, and preparing for an investiture ceremony for two new judges appointed the court. She was responsible for helping write the chief justices’ speech at the investiture ceremony. She gained tools for legal research working with a judge half the semester. She also had the opportunity to attend court hearings and meet one on one with other judges to gain insight on how the work of the Court impacts the globalized economy.