Several students in the International Political Economy and Development program (IPED) will take prestigious positions with aid groups this fall, according to Henry Schwalbenberg, Ph.D., IPED’s director.
Bridget Bucardo Rivera, who will receive her master’s degree in August, has been named an International Development Fellow by Catholic Relief Services, and will be assigned to Nicaragua in the fall. Through an IPED International Peace and Development Travel Fellowship, Rivera is currently working in El Salvador with Catholic Relief Services on a four-country initiative that assists 7,100 small-holder coffee producers in Central America and Mexico.
John Briggs, also an August graduate, also has been named an International Development Fellow by Catholic Relief Services, and in the fall will be assigned to Uganda. He is currently working in Honduras with Catholic Relief Services on a project that will offer at-risk youth options for meaningful and sustainable livelihoods through vocational training. Briggs is also an IPED International Peace and Development Travel Fellowship recipient.
Catholic Relief Services uses its International Development Fellows Program to recruit the best and brightest from among the graduates of the leading graduate programs in international development, according to Schwalbenberg, who says out of a thousand applications, only about 20 are chosen. Given the small size of the IPED program, Schwalbenberg said he is very pleased to account for about 10 percent of all successful applicants.
Chengguang Zhao, although not officially selected as an International Development Fellow, has been offered a contract to continue his work with Catholic Relief Services in Sierra Leone. Through an IPED International Peace and Development Travel Fellowship, Zhao has helped to implement a U.S. Department of Agriculture school feeding program.