Student Information

Student Name

Elizabeth Spenst




Internship Information

Company/Organization: International Rescue Committee

Mentor(s):Ellen O'Connell

Topic of Internship

International Relations

Background Information

At work in over 40 countries and 22 US cities, the International Rescue Committee (IRC) is a leading nonsectarian, nongovernmental international relief and development organization based in the United States. When people are forced to flee from conflict or disaster, the IRC leads the way to safety and self-reliance. When an emergency happens in the world, the IRC arrives with urgently needed supplies and expertise within 72 hours and stays until help is no longer needed. The IRC is very active in refugee relocation and promoting self-sufficiency. The CEO and President of the IRC is the former British politician David Miliband, and a very active and high-profile Board of Directors and Overseers help further the mission of the IRC.

Summary of Internship

Interning for one of the best and biggest nonprofits in the world is truly an amazing experience. My mentor is the Vice President for Board and Overseer Relations, so I get to be a part of the administrative side of humanitarian aid. Ellen gives me a lot of interesting projects to work on that take anywhere from three months to a single day to complete. My longest project was researching the IRCís impact in Germany from 1950-1960 by going through the corporate records from this time period and pulling out the references to Germany. I do a lot of investigative research, like asking sister organizations about their health care methods and crafting a biography about a board member by going through her file that started in 1996. At my internship, I am always engaged with interesting assignments and I am surrounded by incredible people who will answer all of my stupid questions about how to use the copier. Ellen is an amazing mentor who truly cares about the intern and the IRC is a great place for people to be if they are interested in humanitarian aid and global issues.

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