Professional internships allow Evans Scholars to apply knowledge gained in class to real world situations, explore different career options, and build their skills toward a desired career objective. In addition to career and alumni resources available through Swarthmore, many scholars take advantage of the Evans Scholars alumni network and staff for advice and contacts.
Mary Klap '11 — American Chamber of Commerce in Costa Rica
Mary worked with the American Chamber of Commerce in San Jose, Costa Rica in summer 2008, where she developed a guide to trade detailing customs laws, logistics and regulations for importing and exporting between Costa Rica and the United States. "I was able to fulfill my goals of working abroad and gaining experience with international trade and foreign direct investment." The following summer she interned in New York City at Shared Interest, which guarantees bank loans in South Africa's economically disenfranchised communities to encourage the creation of jobs, housing, and small businesses. "I was really interested in working with socially proactive investments, so this was a great fit." This summer she will work in asset management at J.P. Morgan. She is excited to work at a preeminent institution gaining knowledge and experience with investment processes, strategies, and instruments.
Roseanna Sommers '10 — Near East Foundation
In summer 2007, Roseanna interned in New York City with the Near East Foundation, which works to improve conditions for marginalized people throughout the Middle East and Africa who are threatened by endemic poverty, conflict, migration and climate change. Her project focused on locating the survivors of the Armenian genocide who were put in orphanages sponsored by the Near East Relief Foundation. She gathered photos and memories of the victims and the survivors to build a lasting archive of the organization's history. She corresponded with a historian in Armenia and helped him piece together the history of the orphanages by locating photographs of important events and locations. Later that summer, Roseanna traveled to Armenia to follow up on her research, experience the culture firsthand, and learn more about her Armenian roots.
"I had never been much of a history buff before, but that summer I felt like I finally 'got it' — why people care so much about bygone events, why they make us learn about them in school, and why people continue to debate them today. That summer I got to be a historian myself, and I realized studying history is actually a lot of fun when you are making your own discoveries. I enjoyed sifting through archives, reading old documents and diaries, looking through photos and trying to put them in order. It was a little bit like being a detective. I remember how exciting it was to discover a photo of an orphanage that had the exact same distinct round windows as another one I'd seen in a photo sent to me by Missak, my collaborator in Armenia. I realized they must be the same building. I scanned the photo and emailed it to him and he wrote back 'Oh my God, I am shaking! It is the same building.'
"I also realized that studying history can answer a lot of my questions about why the world is the way it is today. Now I understand why so many Armenian Americans lobby for legislation recognizing the genocide, why it is so important that the killings be acknowledged as 'genocide.' I feel much better positioned to weigh in on the debate now that I have seen primary documents firsthand."