The Clements Center's Student Professional Development Fund
enables UT undergraduate and graduate students the opportunity to intern at some of the top governmental and non-governmental organizations across the world by providing monetary support for unpaid positions.
This summer, the Center funded seven students: four graduate students and three undergraduate students. Here's Nali Shah's story:
"As the government relations intern at the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) in Washington, every day is different. I work under the congressional liaison, preparing materials for senior UNHCR meetings with Capitol Hill staff, NGOs, and other United Nations officials. In addition to this, I monitor congressional activities, such as recently filed bills or public hearings. My supervisors and I spend a lot of time out of the office at Congressional hearings or NGO and think tank briefings.
"The best thing about my internship is having the chance to watch history in real-time. At this particular moment, Washington is changing every day. It has been interesting to watch the national security community adapt to the new political climate.
"Participating in the Undergraduate Fellows Program and London Maymester has enabled me to better understand the historical, theoretical, and political context of my work. Overall, this experience has reaffirmed what the Clements Center initially fostered within me – a commitment to national security, in the context of human rights and global development. Moving forward, I hope to use my scholarship to enable refugees around the world to lead lives of dignity."
Nali Shah is a Liberal Arts Honors senior with majors in Government and minors in Communications Studies and Economics. She is a Terry Foundation Scholar, alum of the 2016 Clements Center Maymester and Undergraduate Fellows programs, and Fall 2016 Archer Fellow at the Brookings Institution.