This post is part of a profile series on NPSIAns and their summer work experiences. If you have any questions for the student profiled, please refer to their contact information at the bottom of this post.
Name: Andrew Luth
Workplace: Mines Action Canada
NPSIA cluster: Conflict Analysis & Resolution
Position obtained through the Carleton co-op process?: No
Undergrad school(s): Calvin College
Undergrad major(s): History and International Affairs
What is your commute to work like?
15-20 minute bike/bus ride or a 30 minute drive due to traffic.
How would you describe the dress code at your work?
Are there many other NPSIAns at your workplace?
No other student interns at the moment.
What are the lunch options like nearby your work?
There are several lunch places nearby, but I prefer bringing a lunch from home.
How many jobs did you apply to this summer?
I applied to about 30 co-op jobs but was unsuccessful. I’ve met with with Kevin, the co-op administrator, and he confirmed that my resume, cover letter and interview skills are all strong. Unfortunately there doesn’t seem to be a lot of logic to the hiring process. I’m applying for Fall positions right now and would recommend you meet with the co-op staff as soon as the co-op process begins. Also, make sure you have backup plans for the summer. There are plenty of amazing opportunities outside of co-op and I encourage you to take advantage of them.
What is your favourite part about your job?
I work in a very small non-profit advocacy organization, but we really do an awesome job of punching above our weight. It’s awesome to feel like you are making a difference and that your skills are valued.
What is the most challenging part of your job?
Honestly, it’s probably remembering to take my lunch break and leave at the right time. I love my job!
What is an average day like for you?
There is no average day! I have participated in all sorts of different projects, from directing a twitter advocacy campaign, to writing letters to ambassadors and ministers, to doing research and writing blog posts http://minesactioncanada.nationbuilder.com/riw2015.
How much is your hourly wage?
Is your workplace fully bilingual, or does it favour English over French (or vice versa)?
It’s an English office, but if you have French skills they will be exploited.
What are some exciting things happening in your workplace right now?
I’m working on letters about the Convention on Cluster Munitions to all 100+ non-States Members encouraging them to sign or ratify. We’ve also got a 70 day Twitter campaign going right now in the lead-up to the 70th anniversary of the nuclear bombing of Hiroshima. https://twitter.com/MinesActionCan
What surprised you the most about your workplace/position?
I was surprised by the amount of responsibility they were willing to give me, and the effort they put into my professional development.
Are you also taking classes (NPSIA, language training, etc.) and/or studying abroad this summer?
Yes, I’m heading to Shanghai for a month to study at Fudan University under a scholarship from the Chinese embassy. My internship is willing to give me the time away.
Which NPSIA course best-prepared you for your position?
The research and writing skills I picked up in all of my NPSIA courses together prepared me better than anything I learned in particular.
What sort of work experience did you have before this position?
Worked as an English teacher in China for two years. I also have experience working in the oil and gas industry. During my undergrad degree I was in plenty of extracurricular leadership roles, including student government.
What are your hours like?
9-5, and I chose the number of days each week I’d like to work.
Looking back, is there anything you wish you would’ve done differently in your job search?
I wish I would’ve applied for the Explore Program to improve my French, but by the time I found out about it, the deadline had passed.
What is some advice you’d give to a student hoping to get hired/intern at your workplace?
Mines Action Canada warmly welcomes NPSIA students, so if you’re looking for an internship for Fall, Winter, or Summer that will give you real responsibilities and value your skills, get in touch!.
Have any questions for Andrew?
Contact the NPSIA Students’ Association (firstname.lastname@example.org) and we’ll put you in touch!