Skip to main content
Expand AU Menu

Alumni Profiles



Contact:
Candace Gibson
Program Coordinator
(202) 885-1657
IDPSIS@american.edu

The following are profiles of a few of our approximately 1300 distinguished alumni. They come from many distinct and different backgrounds and work in variety of organizations throughout the field of development.

Monica Malpezzi Price

Owner:

ExperiencePlus! Bicycle Tours (Colorado) and BikesPlus SRL (Italy)


Education: MS, DM - Organizational Development (2006)


What do you love most about your job? Inviting people to immerse themselves in new places and cultures and providing the tools and stimulus for them to learn about themselves and the world. By bicycle no less! Bicycling allows you to fully immerse yourself into your surroundings, allows you to travel at your own pace and makes you feel good mentally and physically at the end of the day.


How did your time in the DM program prepare you for success? Two things: 1) my interest in tourism as a development tool was high throughout my time at AU although there was not a tourism focus available. However, my studies in ID and DM reinforced the fact that the world is so interconnected and that as much as we need to "help over there" we also need to have awareness in the west and not just do charity for the "other". So I see my work in (responsible) tourism as increasing that awareness about the world, the world economy and our actions within that world. 2) my focus on organizational development and management helped me with management issues and training for staff as well as tour development. While a business degree would have done something similar (or better) I think the time in DM greatly helped with improving my management skills.


What advice do you have for current and/or prospective students pursuing careers in development? 1) The purpose of development should be to work yourself out of a job. That would be the ultimate success-keep that in mind. 2) There are many creative tools out there that can help/empower communities, and "traditional" top down development (thankfully not advocated at AU) is not always the best answer (although without the foundation of a solid development education you can't navigate the development world or know what can or cannot work!). Think out of the box as you approach the "developing" world.

Paul Hanscom

Vice President of Marketing and Business Development:

Ewald Consulting


Education: BA - Latin America and Spanish Language Studies (2003); MA - Policy and Program Administration (2004)


What do you love most about your job? The opportunity to learn about people and organizations dedicated to advancing careers and economies locally, nationally, and globally.

How did your time in the Policy and Program Administration program prepare you for success? I learned about the importance of nonprofits in policy work as well as the tactical tools to function well as part of a nonprofit leadership and consulting team.


What advice do you have for current and/or prospective students pursuing careers in development? Try to identify where you want to make a difference – working on topical matters at a policy level or “in the trenches” working directly with the individuals and communities being impacted.


Stephanie Cate Lord

Executive Director:

The Batonga Foundation


Education: MA - International Development - International Public Health, Education, and Gender Studies (2011)


What do you love most about your job? At Batonga, I develop customized education programs and financial skills training for the most excluded adolescent girls in sub-Saharan Africa,  so that they can gain the skills they need to support themselves and contribute to society. I love visiting our programs and doing fieldwork.


How did your SIS academic experience prepare you for success? Obtaining my Master's Degree while working full-time helped prepare me for the fast-paced nature of working for a small, quickly growing NGO. I was able to immediately apply what I was learning to my job and I believe that helped me to retain and build upon the knowledge I gained while at SIS.

 

What advice do you have for current and/or prospective students pursuing careers in development? For current students, be sure to take advantage of the skills institutes! They really help to convert theory into professional expertise.

Skills Institutes

Students in classroom.

Intensive three-day courses, training students in state-of-the-art international development techniques

find out more

Tinker-Walker Fellowships

Acacia Tree

Through the Irene Tinker-Millidge Walker Fellowship, students can receive financial support to offset the costs of including overseas field experience in their research, internship, or practicum.

Find out more