Guest Post by UCLA Nourish Alumnus Amna Qamar
Life After Nourish? There is such a thing, y’all.
I was a member of Nourish at UCLA from 2008 to 2012 beginning as a general body member and graduating as Chapter Director. After graduation, I moved to Washington D.C. with the hopes of finding a job at a small non-profit implementing international development programs. In my mind, the perfect job would be to facilitate and implement the equivalent of Nourish’s summer projects. Instead I found myself working at the U.S. Office of Foreign Assistance Resources at the Department of State. The office is a joint State Department and USAID (U.S. Agency for International Development) organization which manages funds used to finance both agencies’ foreign assistance programs. We help decide how slivers of the foreign assistance budget are spent and USAID missions and State Department bureau field offices implement the programs on the ground.
While the work I do on a daily basis does not resemble the work Nourish Chapters do, both organizations operate on the premise that well-designed aid is good. We see aid as a tool and a long-term investment. We recognize that if other countries and communities succeed, the United States succeeds. And we both believe that local organizations can be instrumental to deliver aid effectively. What stuck with me from Nourish may not be the same for every other member and I think that is the inherently remarkable thing about the organization–that it appeals to diverse interests and can lead its members to divergent paths. Do you want to pursue Nourish Project like work full time? Do you want to continue working in partnership with communities and implementing sustainable development programs? You can.
– Amna Qamar
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