Notes from the Field: Megan Mounts '18 

Megan Mounts '18 interned with the U.S. Embassy at Bridgetown, Barbados​ for the Summer 2017 term. The following is an excerpt from her internship report.

My summer internship experience was facilitated through the United States Department of State Intern Program. I served in the Public Affairs Section at the U.S. Embassy at Bridgetown, Barbados. The Section is part of the Bureau of Western Hemisphere Affairs. The Embassy mission is to promote U.S.-Eastern Caribbean relations in sustainable economic growth, good governance, and support of a vibrant civil society. The Embassy is unique in that it also serves six other island nations. The Public Affairs Section promotes mutual understandings through education and cultural programs. U.S. professionals and artists are invited to the region to engage with local communities. There is strong support for science, technology, and leadership with young learners. U.S. higher institutions are promoted to college-aged students. The Section controls all Embassy social media outlets, and monitors media releases from local sources to interpret political and economic perceptions of U.S. policies in the region.

Although I monitored media and contributed to official statements and embassy speeches, my work primarily focused on the planning, communication, and execution of educational exchange programs and events. For example, I managed aspects of the VISA interview visit for students selected for the Youth Ambassadors Program, reviewed applicant submissions for the Young Leaders of Americas Initiative, and organized the Parish Ambassadors Luncheon in Honor of International Youth Day which was attended by the U.S. Ambassador.

My internship experiences have solidified my choice to minor in education. I place great value on bringing opportunities to those who have the potential, but not the access, and I was able to be part of managing outstanding programs for learners.

I have decided to complete a global health minor so I can bring a diverse background to my desired profession in some aspect of international development. Learning of current infrastructure challenges in Barbados and water scarcity issues has peaked my curiosity about water use policies and I will take a course in that this year. The common theme through all of my interests, and now my expanded internship experiences, is how public policy shapes outcomes for individuals, communities, and countries.

I am so grateful for the supporting funds from the Nelson A. Rockefeller Center for Public Policy that made this internship experience possible.