By Catrice Austin
Social Media Liaison
On March 16, Director of Internships and Career Development Dr. Catherine Ruby and Director of Professional Services Mr. Kyle Younger took a group of eager freshman and sophomores on a New York City Internship Summit.
Despite persistent transit delays, students gathered in front of the Chase Manhattan Bank, gazing in awe as the sun shone down on nation flags blowing outside of the United Nations.
During the summit, students visited the U.S. Mission to the U.N. where they sat in the press room with Public Affairs Specialist, Kenzi Green, President Management Fellow at FEMA and Seton Hall alumnusLogan Whitehead, and Director of Special Projects Mille Meyers. Both Green and Whitehead gave valuable advice on taking the Foreign Service exam, how to start a career at the United Nations and why it is never too late to pursue one’s dreams. When speaking on their experiences and career paths, they shared what inspired them to work for the U.S. Mission to the UN. Green even offered the advice that while working for the U.N. is not impossible, it is not the only way to make an impact in the world of diplomacy. She encouraged students to go out and experience the world, and to seize every important opportunity to help them grow into well-rounded individuals.
The second site on the tour was the CNN Time Warner Center. Here, students met with Paul Murphy and HR Coordinator Kristina Garcia, who both offered insight into the world of journalism. Murphy, who is a School of Diplomacy alumnus, talked passionately about his job as a writer and producer for CNN. He shared his unexpected journey into journalism and how covering prominent stories and informing the world on the latest news is all that he could ask for. Murphy welcomed questions about his toughest stories and what it is like working on high profile stories, and how he feels about the new era of journalism – which he answered with great optimism – stating that increased criticism has made him and his colleagues become better journalists. He shared that he welcomes constructive criticism because, according to him, it launches dialogue that makes room for improvement. Afterwards, Murphy took the group on a studio tour where students were able to get a behind the scenes look at the control room where the CNN magic happens, and took a peek at the studio where journalist Anderson Cooper films his segments.
After being blown away at CNN headquarters, students headed into the Council on Foreign Relations where the awe continued. Inconspicuous to the passersby and located in a building that blends in with all the other Park Avenue buildings, the CFR building may not grab one’s attention by first glance; but when inside, the air of prominence, diplomacy and tasteful décor surely reflect an organization dedicated to civic duty. At CFR, students had the opportunity to sit in the briefing room with CFR National Intelligence Fellow Michael Dempsey and Human Resource Representative Mia McCully. After the amazement subsided, students picked Dempsey’s brain on careers in the CIA, his experience working for former presidents Barack Obama and George W. Bush, and his stance on technology and where it is leading us today. Mia McCully expressed her love for working for CFR and encouraged students to apply to their summer internship. As the last session came to a close, there was an air of optimism and students buzzed about their experience and “how cool it was to be in the Council of Foreign Relations.”
Visiting these three sites has given not only myself, but my fellow classmates’ insight into the career path we wish to take after we graduate. It still feels surreal to know that I was sitting across from Michael Dempsey, listening to him retell stories of working in the White House, but I am nonetheless grateful for the opportunity the School of Diplomacy has given me. My biggest take away from the New York City Internship Summit is that anything is possible. No goal is too big and if I work hard enough, I will achieve it.
The trip was one of the many ways the School of Diplomacy supports their students, as the School frequently arranges and hosts various summits to organizations and companies, where students can meet with professionals, work on networking skills, gain exposure and insight into a particular field of study. This is done through the school’s invaluable alumni network.