A new look for the blog, and a new update on what’s been going on at IEDP!

Our program’s capstone project is known as a policy brief, in which we analyze an issue and current policy surrounding it and then suggest our own recommendations to the relevant governing body/organization on how to improve it. Incorporated into this capstone is a poster session, in which we condense our work into snappy sentences and smart graphics to present to both our classmates and IEDP-affiliated faculty and staff.

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Our cohort split into three groups, with each group commandeering wall space for about thirty minutes while everyone else mulls from poster to poster, munching on cheese and delicious samosas (that Dr. Thapa brought for us, the kind soul!) and asking questions. Even though the range of posters ran from seemingly minuscule (from yours truly) to curiously large (here’s looking at you, Evan), everyone created lovely posters! From what I could tell, everyone held their own while fielding questions.

My specific topic dealt with improving multilingual education in Nepal, so I was certainly sweating bullets when Dr. Thapa came around to evaluate my poster. Happily, he found it to be good and even suggested a few other recommendations that I will certainly incorporate into my policy brief. Overall, the entire atmosphere was so casual thatΒ any stress I may had been feeling proved futile.

Not only was it worthwhile to gain the communication skills (and finally discovering the SmartArt graphics on PowerPoint- after all these years!), but it was also amazing to see the range of interests and work from the rest of the cohort. We had presentations on developing non-formal education programs with Nigerian nomads (Ania), integration of out-of-school youth in Guinea (Bintou), schools for food security in Dakar (Ryan), and so, so many more. Check them out below!

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Afterwards, a good portion of us went out to celebrate, enjoying just one more night of relaxation before returning to the mountains of papers, presentations and internship logistics that await us still. One thing I can say for sure is that we’ve gotten much closer as a group, and though the bittersweet goodbyes are soon approaching, it feels grandΒ to be a part of this amazing and talented group of people.

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There’s only one more week of class left. Wow.