Malyse Uwase ’13
Women for Women International, Kigali, Rwanda
BPIP Alumni Association Internship Fund
Class Year: 2013
Hometown: Kigali, Rwanda
Major: International Relations/ Women’s and Gender Studies
Campus Activities: Member of: Bucknell African Student Association ( BASA), Essential, Black Student Union (BSU), and Common Ground. I also work for the office of International Student Services, as well the Women’s and Gender Studies department.
What is the most interesting or important thing you took from your Internship this summer?
I learned how an NGO such as Women for Women International manages to operate and become successful. I was able to experience first hand issues that women face in some developing countries face, and how they can be helped to overcome them. I got to participate in different programs that aim at empowering women by educating them on their rights and providing them with the opportunity to learn a skill that can provide them with an income. In the long run they not only help their families but also their communities, and their country. The internship helped reaffirm my interest in the field of women and development.
How did the BPIP Fund help make your experience possible?
The organization was willing to give me a non paid internship position, but I would have not been able to work full time in that condition . The BPIP helped me take care of my expenses while I was working full time.
Why would you recommend the BPIP Fund?
I would recommend it because it truly does make a difference when you are trying to find an internship in the non profit or public area. It gives you the ability to have those internships that you really want to do. This in turn can help you figure out if you truly want to work in certain field or not. Plus you get a lot of experience because you are often working in an office as a full time employee, and you get an idea of work place dynamics and so much more.
I would like to share the links of both organizations I was able to discover while doing my BPIP internship. The first one is the organization I worked for: Women for Women International (Rwanda chapter) that helps women in post conflict countries by providing them with different tools to make their lives better.
The second one is Ubushobozi, a small project that operates in a rural area, that helps teenage girls obtain a revenue by teaching them how to sew as well as English and some computer skills. Two American women came to visit their sisters that they sponsored through Women for Women International, and told me about this other small project that they are a part of. I was their translator for the day and I made arrangements to visit their project because it sounded interesting. I ended up loving it and continued to volunteer for them because the project truly does make a difference in the girls’ lives.