Hi! I’m Kate. I was a postgrad student of the MA IR course 2017-2018 in Paris but have since moved back to London where I now work as the Programme Officer for Migration and Europe at the Overseas Development Institute (ODI), a political research think tank, and before that I worked as the Technical Team Co-ordinator at the British Red Cross.
Career wise did you have a vision of what direction you wanted to take before/during your time at ULIP?
Before I started at ULIP I had no idea what I wanted to do with my career, I had just finished my undergrad in English and Classical Studies and was interested in publishing but definitely knew I didn’t want to be a teacher! Coming to ULIP not only meant moving countries but also changing courses and focuses on International Relations, and to be honest I still wasn’t sure what direction I wanted my career to take when I left Paris in the summer of 2018 having finished my masters!
Since graduation has this vision changed?
When I graduated I had already been working at the British Red Cross for 4 months and at that point I knew that I wanted to work in the humanitarian or development sectors but I really wanted to do more policy-based work, and certainly I wanted to move my broad focus as a Technical Team Coordinator covering all regions and all thematic areas to narrowing in on migration as this was my masters dissertation focus and an area of policy that I was most interested in.
What memories stand out for you from your time in Paris and at ULIP?
People say university is the best time of your life, and whilst I wouldn’t go that far, I do have a lot of really positive memories from being in Paris and at uni there. What stands out for me, apart from getting to know Paris so well and truly feeling like it was my home and my city, was the freedom to shape my year there through by my classes at uni but all the opportunities that living in Paris brings. Most importantly, all the brilliant people that I met on my course and some that I am still in touch with now and have visited all over the world.
What advice would you give your younger self/current students at ULIP?
Work hard but enjoy your time in Paris and make the most of all it has to offer! But also, don’t worry too much about what you are going to do after uni, you’ll find the best things are the ones that seem to happen by accident and you kind of fall into, and something will always come up.