Category Archives: Search Resources

Acronym Salad: Part I – USAID

USAID Small Logo

The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) is the U.S. Government’s primary agency for international development and humanitarian assistance.  Given the breadth of its programming, the agency and its workers will often use short-hand notation to describe the offices in which they work and the programs that are carried out within.

In this edition of acronym salad, we will discuss two primary acronyms of use to potential development workers, IQC (Indefinite Quantity Contracts) and PVO (Private Voluntary Organizations)

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What Language Should I Study?

“To prosper economically and to improve relations with other countries, Americans need to read, speak and understand other languages.”  U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan, 8 December 2010.

While learning a second language is linked with a number of different benefits, including slowing brain aging, improving multitasking abilities, and the acquisition of another language, this somewhat elides the question of which language should one study for a career in public administration or international relations? Continue reading

How to Make Your DoS Internship Stand Out!

On Friday, we spoke about State Department Internships, what they are and how they can benefit graduate students.  Now, since the Department’s internship application opens today, I thought it would be good to talk about how to make your application stand out and secure the internship placement that fits your strengths. Continue reading

Interning with the Department of State

Seal of the US State Department

Seal of the US State Department

Each year, the MAIR program has a number of students pursue internships with the U.S. Department of State at home and abroad.  The class that entered in 2013 could count among their number students who worked in the US Embassy in Cyprus, the US Embassy in the Philippines, US Embassy in Singapore as well as colleagues in the bureaus of African Affairs, Conflict and Stabilization OperationsInternational Security and Non-Proliferation, and Population, Refugees and Migration. Since the Department’s Internship Application will open on Monday, September 2, 2014 and close on October 17, 2014, those of you interested in the opportunity will need to work quickly to make sure that your application materials are submitted on time. More information about State Department Internships is below the fold. Continue reading

Ways to Handle a Professional Transition

Mind the Gap

Good Preparation for a Career Transition Source: Wikipedia.org

Throughout your post-Maxwell School career in international relations or public administration you will likely have several different jobs. A recent Bureau of Labor Statistics study estimated that late-period Baby Boomers (1957-1964) will hold 11.3 jobs in their lifetime. Some Millennials are expected to hold 15-20 jobs during a career. (Personally, I’m on 6, depending on how you count different positions within the same company). Continue reading

Advice for Job Market Shoppers

Mass Market Paperback Not Included

Something to bide your time. Source: Wikipedia.org

Regardless of whether you are a public administration or an international relations student, you will be on the job market before you think.

During your time here at Maxwell, we hope that you will also develop the professional skills necessary to succeed in the job search.

Thus, we wanted to share the following article about Going on the Job Market? by Professor Amanda Murdie of Kansas State University. Even though it is written for a doctoral audience, Professor Murdie gives some advice that is applicable for all graduate students and job seekers. Continue reading

The Art of Informational Interviewing

It's not always this complex

A Social Network
Source: Wikipedia

Students are often intimidated by the idea of “networking” and feel that they should be able to compete successfully for a position based solely on their qualifications. While this is an honorable approach, it is especially necessary in today’s market to identify people in your field of expertise who you can use as contacts when looking for a professional position.  Continue reading

Getting Started in International Development

Remember that it is a marathon and not a sprint

Getting started in Development
Source: flickr.com

For those of you interested in working in the international development field, starting your search will involve more than just deciding on what the focus of your studies will be, but conceptualizing the development landscape to make sure that you are pointing your career search in the right direction.  Luckily, Michele Carter, an Association of Professional Schools in International Affairs (APSIA) aluma wrote an essay that can offer some additional tips to those of you interested in the field.

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International Affairs within the US Government

While the search for international affairs jobs in the U.S. government often starts with the Department of State, the U.S. Agency for International Development, and the Department of Defense, it doesn’t necessarily have to end there.  In 2013, the Robertson Foundation for Government, GovLoop, and the Association of Professional Schools in International Affairs (APSIA), published “Making an Impact_Guide to International Jobs in Government,” which provides details on the 50 federal agencies and offices that have international components.  If you are interested in working in the international arena for the US government, it behooves you to take a look.

Diplomacy and Development Organization

As parts of the United States government, the Department of State and the US Agency for International Development (USAID) have complicated organizational systems. Given the interlocking tasks and multiple hierarchical layers, it is important for those interested in working in the system to have a working knowledge of these organization structures as they consider their potential career path. Thus, we’ve prepared a quick guide to all of the major offices in both organizations for your use. Continue reading