Internship: National Union for Democracy (NUFDI)
Location: Washington, D.C.
Program: Summer Social Impact Internship (SSII) Fund
Concentration: Near Eastern Studies
Why did you choose your internship?
I chose this internship because I have a passion for both international relations and Iranian affairs; my time at NUFDI allowed me to explore both of these fields in depth.
What have you learned?
Perhaps the most important thing I learned this summer was that personal stories are just as important as textbook readings when it comes to understanding a nation's history and culture. During my time at NUFDI, I was able to meet and talk with people who have had firsthand experience growing up in Iran, researching Iran, or often both. These encounters helped me to further my engagement and learn so much more about Iran than I could have elsewhere.
How do you think this opportunity will impact your career path and/or future goals?
The work at NUFDI is very humanitarian-focused; interning there helped me to realize that this is an interest which I would like to continue in future work. NUFDI is a nonprofit, and although I loved my time there, I think that it also helped me to realize that I would like to explore other forms of engagement as well, whether that be through government, journalism, or another venue.
What has been most memorable for you?
My favorite memory at NUFDI is the Wednesday lunch-ins we all had together, where the boss would bring in professionals (in academia, activism, etc.), who talked about their own work and offered us future career advice. I really enjoyed getting to meet all these people and hearing what they had to say.