Now that two years have transpired, so has my outlook on my academic and professional career. For one, I have learned to be more open-minded. When I first got accepted into SAIS I was steadfast on doing the International Development concentration, but I had been waitlisted for it and ultimately had to opt for my second option: Latin American Studies (LASP). This has undoubtedly been one of the best decisions I have made. This is mainly due to the LASP internship I did last summer in Medellín, Colombia that afforded me the experience of a lifetime. Not to mention the cohesiveness of the department that trickles down to its cohort.
Furthermore, studying at SAIS has also given me such a broad perspective, particularly, at the intersection of policy and economics. Not coming from an economics background, the compulsory economics component has not been free of challenges; however, the new set of skills that I have acquired has allowed me to see policy-making from a different angle and I feel properly equipped and a well-rounded professional that can make tangible contributions from the public to private sector.
Congratulations to the incoming 2017/2018 cohort! Whether you’re starting in Nanjing, Bologna, or Washington, DC; this is the beginning of an incredible journey.
Welcome to the SAIS community!
Ileana Valle (MA'17)